This is the fourth article covering the sessions from the Raleigh Neighborhood Exchange highlighting Asset Based Community Development. We first told you about ABCD in the Raleigh Neighborhood Exchange keynote address. The exchange was held on September 19, 2009. Previous reviews of the neighborhood exchange sessions included teen topics, diversity in communities, and being in a new community. From the Community Organizing workshop description: “Appreciating and mobilizing individual and neighborhood talents, skills, and assets is the foundation for building strong communities.” Presenters were Duane Beck and Raleigh Community Services Department.
In a community, assets are the ability that people bring. Examples of assets could be your neighbors, groups, businesses, or the City of Raleigh. The community really benefits when different assets come together. Asset-based communities are motivated by what they don’t have, using their assets to get what they want.
Five guiding principles
- Everyone has assets (retiree’s, youths, etc.).
- Discover what people care enough about to act. A list of things to change, improve, create.
- Mobilize groups to act. For example, clubs (garden, book, youth tutors) or community festival committees.
- There are different roles for people and programs
- Lead by stepping back. Community leaders don’t have to do everything themselves.
There was also a questionnaire provided at the session to help communities determine what their assets are and focus what they should work on.
Community Building Questionnaire
- What do you like most about your community? [List 3]
- What would you like to see improved in your community? [List 3]
- Which of these are you willing to work on? [Select 2]