Building Community One Neighbor At A Time

Our central goal is to build the capacity of communities to create a stronger bond between residents and to solve community problems. Empowered communities are able to drive change when they recognize the needs of every resident, understand their rights and the natural and economic forces that affect them, and are able to take pragmatic actions. Once empowered, communities are better able to build constructive relationships with government institutions, the private sector, and civil society in ways that are sustainable. In turn, local governments, the private sector, and civil society have a greater ability to address community needs.

The community organizations we serve have the passion to revitalize their neighborhoods and much of what they need to make it happen. Our role is to fill gaps by bringing financial resources, serving as a technical expert, and creating partnerships to give a boost to local efforts. Our work enables community organizations to be more efficient, effective, and sustainable by offering best practices, successful models and resources.

 

Neighborhood Democracy Initiatives

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We offer a wide range of technical assistance and capacity building resources to local neighborhood organizations. Our work is designed to help organizations tackle the programs and projects that are needed to strengthen their organizational practices and increase their ability to serve their community.

We provide support to groups and organizations working on community improvement projects or programs at any stage. We support groups and organizations through the process of creating their group or organization, program development, community engagement, and strategy development phases. In some cases, we are able to provide funding or act as a financial or administrative agent.

Our goal is to support programs and projects that build sustainable communities beyond physical redevelopment. We focus on creating stronger social connection and community connectedness through our capacity-building efforts. We work alongside our partners to build organizational capacity by helping those we serve to help their community reach a specific outcome.

Placemaking and Community Design

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We work to capitalize on a local community's assets, inspiration, and potential - all with the intention of creating public spaces that promote people's health, happiness, and well-being. We believe that people and places are what define communities. The residents and places they live, work and play compose a unique identity for every community. We work with communities to engage in deliberate placemaking - engaging Utahns to create the public spaces they want. 

Placemaking inspires people to collectively reimagine and reinvent public spaces as the heart of every community. Strengthening the connection between people and the places they share, placemaking refers to a collaborative process by which we can shape our public realm in order to maximize shared value. More than just promoting better urban design, placemaking facilitates creative patterns of use, paying particular attention to the physical, cultural, and social identities that define a place and support its ongoing evolution.

Digital Inclusion

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Digital Inclusion refers to the activities necessary to ensure that all individuals and communities, including the most disadvantaged, have access to and use of information and communication technologies.

This includes 5 elements:

  • Affordable, robust broadband internet service;
  • Internet-enabled devices that meet the needs of the user;
  • Access to digital literacy training;
  • High-quality technical support;
  • Applications and online content designed to enable and encourage self-sufficiency, participation, and collaboration. 

Digital Inclusion must evolve as technology advances. Digital Inclusion requires intentional strategies and investments to reduce and eliminate historical, institutional and structural barriers to access and use technology.

We work collaboratively with local, state, and national partners to provide support, resources, and capacity-building support for digital inclusion initiatives. We also seek to serve as a resource to policymakers and the general public through our core programming. 

We are proud to be a recognized affiliate of the Digital Inclusion Alliance. 

 

Local Food Systems

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We believe in the power of food. Whether it is making our communities healthier or tying a community together – food is powerful. Our lives are defined by the food we share with others and the rich diversity of food options that we have. We support vibrant and healthy local food systems throughout Utah.

A local food system is a collaborative network that integrates sustainable food production, processing, distribution, consumption, and waste management in order to enhance the environmental, economic, and social health of a particular area. Local food systems align consumer demand with locally produced and distributed food. These systems have the demonstrated capacity to enhance overall community sustainability by increasing economic resiliency through expanded employment and market opportunities; promoting public health through improved access to healthy food; accounting for environmental considerations in land use planning and policy; and addressing social equity by tailoring initiatives to disadvantaged populations. Given local governments’ roles as leaders and conveners in these activities, managers and staff can play a critical role in efforts to promote and support local food systems.

We work to support local food systems by making food policy a priority for local and state leaders. We’re working to ensure that communities are engaged in the work of building local food systems by supporting farmers markets, training and outreach for local gardeners and farmers, local food awareness campaigns, and planning and policy processes that address local food issues. We work to help local governments utilize low- or no-cost opportunities to promote local food systems.


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