24:1 Community Building Initiative
The 24:1 Initiative is an innovative, place-based community development initiative, created to solve in a comprehensive yet targeted way, the serious challenges facing residents and communities within the geographic boundaries of the Normandy School District. This initiative is inspired by 10 years of successful work by Beyond Housing and its partners providing support and improvements in the City of Pagedale. The result is the 24:1 Initiative, twenty-four municipalities with one vision: strong communities, engaged families and successful children.
24:1 is a community driven partnership, convened and facilitated by Beyond Housing. The work to date and the information in this plan is reflective of ongoing conversations and dialogue with community residents and stakeholders. As a result of the excitement surrounding this partnership, in 2009 Beyond Housing secured a five year, $3 million funding commitment to support the work of 24:1. This funding commitment allowed Beyond Housing to fully staff the planning process that has taken place over the last nine months, and will continue to support staffing for implementation of the 24:1 plan.
The 24:1 Planning Process
To guide the planning process and subsequent implementation work, the 24:1Initiative has adopted an approach of Ask · Align · Act. We will continually “ask” for input, making certain that community voice is driving implementation; “align” stakeholders around issues and solutions to create a unified community voice to leverage resources; and “act” on the impact areas outlined in this plan.
Over the last year, the 24:1 Initiative developed a series of ways to ask questions about needs and resources in the community and compiled this feedback, each time taking it back to those we heard from to ensure we got it right. In addition to a planning committee process with over 100 participants, over 52 community meetings were held, with more than 400 attendees.
Throughout this process we also began to align partners and resources to identify shared opportunities and develop a common approach to community priorities. Some examples of this work include:
- Youth and Service Providers events that has engaged more than 190 participants from over 35 different organizations
- Faith Community Breakfast that engaged over 24 participants from 13 churches
- Local Business Stakeholders Breakfast than engaged some 25 participants from 20 businesses within the 24:1 community.
Along with continuing to ask and align, we are now ready to act.
After a year of thoughtful dialogue and intensive planning, we believe this plan is truly representative of the voice of this community. The contents represent areas important to community members, ripe for change, and rich with opportunity. We are calling on residents and partner agencies to rally around this plan and continue to participate by sharing your energy, time and talents.
The 24:1 Initiative is excited to begin implementing these ideas and building upon existing successes in the community. The contents of this plan will serve as our “roadmap,” around which we will bring together partner organizations and community members to get the work done. We will use the approach of ask, align and act to drive implementation by continuing to seek feedback to ensure our plan evolves to best represent the community’s voice and our partners’ capabilities. Specific measures of success will allow us to track progress and help build continuous quality improvement in programs, partnerships and policies.
We know this work cannot be done alone, nor accomplished overnight. But, we believe if all community stakeholders join forces and work together, we can realize our shared vision of building strong communities, engaged families, and successful children.
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”
Barack Obama, President, United States of America