Bristol is tackling a range of issues through service, including literacy, work experience, clean streets, and loneliness and isolation. To address literacy, the city has successfully engaged more than 250 citizen volunteers to help boost reading proficiency among children ages six to seven in more than 50 local schools. With this reading initiative, Mayor Rees intends to make sure that all children in Bristol learn to read well and love reading for the rest of their lives. Through partnerships with local organizations including the Ablaze charity, the Retired and Senior Volunteers Programme, and two universities, Bristol plans to develop a citywide program of reading recovery in their primary schools.
The city is also engaging with citizens through a local partnership with the Learning City Initiative to provide quality work experience for young people. In addition, in 2016 two new Mayoral Citizen Action projects were launched to address homelessness. The city is also working with citizen volunteers to clean up its streets. Since November 2016, 1,316 volunteers have picked up over 525 bags of garbage from the city's streets and cycle paths.
Bristol has been a member of the Cities of Service coalition since 2014, when former Mayor George Ferguson signed the Declaration of Service.
Mayor Marvin J. Rees
Mayor Marvin J. Rees is continuing the work started by his predecessor George Ferguson and is instrumental in the success of Bristol’s citizen service initiatives. Mayor Rees has pledged to make Bristol a fairer city for all. His priorities include affordable housing, public transport, early intervention in health, and social mobility through access to education and skills.