Join the Dots PB
Frequently Asked Questions


What does 'PB' stand for?


'PB' stands for Participatory Budgeting.

What is PB?


PB is a way for people to decide how a budget is spent on projects and services in our communities.  It started in Brazil in 1989 and is being used in more than 3,000 cities around the world for budgets totalling hundreds of millions of pounds.  The PB process is being used across the British Isles, particularly in Scotland where it is supported by the Scottish Government and Scottish local authorities.

What are some of the benefits of PB?

  • People have a clear, public say about their priorities.

  • Builds understanding and trust.

  • Builds skills and confidence.

  • Enables deliberation and discussion.

  • Generates action.

  • It is asset-based collaboration.

How does PB work?

  1. Firstly people put forward their ideas against an agreed theme and budget.

  2. These ideas are turned into suggested projects and become bids.

  3. These bids are pitched to the community.

  4. The community deliberates on the bids and then votes for their favourites.

  5. The bids with the most votes get the money to make them happen.

  6. At the completion of the process, the bidders share how their projects went with the voters in a Celebration Event.

  7. Repeat.

What is different about PB?


The big difference is that you decide where the resources go – anyone aged 8 and above is entitled to vote and have their say on the projects they want to support.  The other big difference is that the process is much simpler and there are no long application forms to complete, just a short bid form.​​

Who are the members of the Join the Dots PB design


​We are Becca Bor, St Columb's Park House; Breige Conway, Northern Area Community Network; Noeleen Diver, PB Works and CfC; Marian Farrell, Zero Waste North West and CfC; Wendy Gibbons, Outer North Neighbourhood Partnership; Bridget Meehan, CfC; Cara McLoughlin, St Columb's Park House; Ruth McNeill, Armoy Community Association; Louise O’Kane, Community Places and PB Works; Miriam Turley, Social Farms and Gardens; Roisin Mc Laughlin, North West Community Network.​​

What are the aims of this PB project?

  • To give a concrete expression to the belief stated in the CfC Declaration for The Common Good that 'small collective actions by the many have the capacity to create the change that builds a more peaceful, just and resilient society.'

  • To increase the visibility of those who wish to further this change.

  • To learn together about the PB process and its use in promoting participative democratic decision making.

  • To open a small space for creative ideas, deliberation and collaboration together.

  • To make something concrete happen together.

  • To demonstrate the application of a digital PB process and learn lessons in its use.

  • To have fun while affirming 'There is a way forward and it begins with us.'

What are the principles we have adopted?


The principles we have adopted are those of Openness, Transparency, Fairness, Equality, Inclusion, Collaboration and Empowerment.

What is the theme of this PB project?


The theme of this PB is Creating Connections.  Bids will show this through bringing people together to create an idea and turn that idea into a project that meets the aims in the Declaration for the Common Good and/or by a project that itself brings people together to meet the Declaration's aims.

What is the total amount of money in the budget?


There is a total of £4000 in the budget.​  This has been crowdfunded from the membership of CfC.

What is the maximum any individual project can make
a bid for?


​The maximum a single project can bid for is £500/€-equivalent.

What are the criteria for bidding?


Bids must:

  • Fit with the theme of Creating Connections as defined above.

  • Support the CfC Declaration for The Common Good.

  • Be within the island of Ireland.

  • Be safe and legal, e.g. insurances, permissions, licenses, COVID restrictions, etc.

  • Be feasible in that the project bid for can be achieved with money requested and be completed before 30 April 2022.

  • Should your bid be successful, you are happy to share your experience and the outcome of your project at the Celebration Event in May 2022.

Who may submit a bid?

  • Anyone who is 8 years of age or older.  If between 8 and 17 years inclusive, an adult will be needed to support your idea.

  • Individuals or groups may submit a bid and groups do not have to have a constitution.

  • A maximum of 2 bids can be submitted from each individual or group.

  • Schools can submit an idea if they are clearly supporting young people in having control of the bid project.

  • The money bid for can be used to top-up already secured resources to deliver your idea.

How can I submit a bid and when is the deadline?


You can submit a bid by completing the online Bid Form and emailing a video pitch of your project to the Design Group at  The bid form and video pitch do not have to be submitted at the same time but they do need to be submitted by 12 November.

The video pitch must be no longer than 2 minutes.  If you have any difficulties with the bid form or the video pitch, please contact team members on any of the following numbers: Noeleen on 077-5296-1208; Louise on 077-6683-2512; Roisin on 028-7126-1941; Bridget on 075-1175-1388; Marian on 078-3470-7496.

What happens to my bid?


Once your bid has been confirmed as meeting the criteria, it will be uploaded to our website along with all the other bids so that the voters may decide where to place their votes.  This will happen by 24 November 2021, when voting opens.

When and how will I know if I have been succesful?


You will be contacted by email and/or by telephone by 8 December 2021.

If successful, how and when do I get the money?


We will send you a cheque and you will get the full amount you bid for upfront.

What information must I give about the project, if successful, as it is being completed?


If you're successful, we'll get in touch to tell you what we need from you; and we'll check in at some stage during the project to see how things are going.

Who may vote?


Anyone who is aged 8 years or older, who has an email address and who lives on the island of Ireland.

How do I see the bids and how do I vote?


You will see all the bids uploaded to our website by 24 November.  From there you will be able to vote to support your choices.  More information on voting will be made available when voting opens on 24 November.

How will I know what are the winning bids?


We will have the winning bids listed on our website by 8 December 2021.

What is the Celebration Event and who should attend?


The Celebration Event will bring all bidders and voters to hear from the successful bidders about how their projects went.  It will be a celebration to conclude this Joining the Dots PB project and an opportunity for all of us to reflect on the PB process and what we might have done differently.  This event will happen soon after 30 April 2022 when all the projects will be complete, most likely in May 2022.

Where can I get more information?


There is information on our website for bidders and voters.  We will also run two information workshops for those who have an idea and might make a bid.  These workshops will run online on:


    Meeting ID: 839 8694 4449

    Passcode: 888830


    Meeting ID: 847 4560 0840

    Passcode: 809022

Is there anything else I can do?

This is our first digital-only PB.  We want to learn as much as we can about what worked and what we could improve.  This feedback will be invaluable so we'll be in touch with voters and bidders to get your views.  We'll share some of the key statistics and learnings on our website.


Where can I find more information about PB?


​Here are some further sources of information about PB: