In honor of our 125th Anniversary, we will be using our newsletter to highlight 125 projects or initiatives that use civic capital to solve problems and build equitable, thriving communities. These cities have been recognized for engaging community members in collaborative efforts to improve education, health care, economic prosperity and the general quality of life. Today, examples 101-110:
- Rancho Cordova, CA. California may fill the nation’s grocery carts, thanks to a robust agricultural economy, but the health of residents living in urban spaces like Rancho Cordova continues to decline due to lack of access to healthy, locally-produced food, and health education. Soil Born Farms stepped-in to turn urban residents into farmers, teach good nutrition, and creatively leverage community resources.
- Battle Creek, MI. Law enforcement are typically the first on the scene of a mental health crisis. Battle Creek Police Department (BCPD) and Summit Pointe recognized that it is necessary to provide law enforcement with tools and training to better address these situations.
- Norfolk, VA. Teens with a Purpose began as a non-profit for teens to help other teens. The mission is to create a platform to empower young people to use their voices, energy, creativity, and talents to demonstrate their power to effect personal change and positively impact the lives of others through the arts and humanities, peer-led programs, and special events.
- Hollywood, CA. At certain points in its long history, LA Pride has fallen under criticism for being less relevant, too focused on partying and/or commercial interests, and for lacking an educational component to teach people about LGBTQ history. As such, the city convened a task force in 2005-2006 to look at these issues and created One City One Pride.
- Cornelius, OR. The City of Cornelius’ downtown area was underdeveloped and unfinished, so the city undertook an extensive public engagement process to develop a shared vision for recreating downtown to be a culturally diverse core for all residents.
- Battle Creek, MI. To address the behavioral crisis events students were experiencing the Battle Creek School District, the school district partnered with community organizations to develop a comprehensive behavior education plan focused on providing students and families with services.
- Pasco, WA. To avoid future negative encounters between people with mental illness and law enforcement, Pasco’s police department created a collaboration called Hot Spotters, in which the city works with nonprofit agencies, courts, families and other stakeholders to identify high-risk individuals and create plans for each that offer services and prepare law enforcement to handle contacts appropriately.
- Dubuque, IA. The Crescent Community Health Center in Dubuque identified the need for additional health services in their Community Health Needs Assessment. From the assessment, Crescent sought to expand services to lower income residents, uninsured residents, Marshallese residents and residents experiencing mental health crisis.
- Mission, TX. Small business is one of the driving forces behind job creation and economic growth. The biggest problem with small business is that many people start their company lacking proper planning and sufficient initial investment for their idea. The Mission Economic Development Corporation offers several programs to help entrepreneurs in Mission, TX overcome these initial obstacles.
- Cornelius, OR. The City of Cornelius’ Main Street District Plan identified the need for a cultural center, including a library. However, because of financial limitations, the library development committee partnered with a local non-profit to make the project more financially feasible. The result is a mixed-use project that provides housing to low-income seniors and a library.