Prior to the advent of the Communities First programme, community members had come together to try to regenerate the area. In 2001 the new Welsh Government initiative, ‘Communities First’ with its promise of long-term financial support gave the community the means of realising their aspirations. Building on our earlier work, a community steering group began meeting in October 2001 to work alongside the new Communities First programme, the group subsequently developed to become Melincryddan Community Conference (MCC).
On 24 October 2002 MCC became a registered company, number 4572382 and on 26 September 2005 the company was also registered as a charity, registration number 1111450.
Communities First and MCC together embarked on a wide range of community regeneration activities including environmental, educational, economic, health, community safety and community engagement initiatives. To oversee and further develop this work the Neath East Communities First Partnership was also formed.
During 2012 following Welsh Government ministerial changes the Communities First Programme was reorganised with a move away from a local partnership approach to a wider Cluster approach. In response MCC then aligned with these changes to develope wider area projects to support community regeneration across Neath Port Talbot and beyond.
One of the initial concentrations of MCC was to be an organisation that would continue to influence the development and regeneration of our communities beyond the period of the Communities First programme. This is now being put to the test with the closure of the Communities First programme. Obtaining funding for our work has become more difficult than ever, however the work we do through the development of volunteers and volunteering helps to deliver important community projects and benefits in a very cost-effective way.