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Disruptive Times Require Skilled Changemakers

Posted by Liz Weaver in February 2019

In this paper, Liz Weaver describes three elements that every changemaker needs when approaching complex challenges - a mindset shift, an agile and adaptable approach, and knowledge and skills in each of the five interconnected practice areas.

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Welcome to the Party! How to Onboard New Collaborative Partners

Posted by Deb Halliday on October 7, 2019

This blog was originally published by the Collective Impact Forum.

If collective impact efforts have any certainties, one surely is the ever-revolving (one might hope ever-evolving) door of community partners coming to the table. Our efforts for inclusivity, the reality that multi-sector coalitions invite instability as people leave jobs and new people come in: it’s inevitable that we will be regularly onboarding new partners.

How do we invite in new faces without disrupting the focus and momentum of the team? I’m often asked this as I coach collective impact efforts. Here are a few strategies that seem to work.

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A Good Place is Better Than No Place

Posted by Jonathan Massimi on October 1, 2019

Over the last couple of years I have had the opportunity to work with a number of communities.  This work has involved a great deal of listening; giving ear to people’s stories, dreams and laments. As I reflect on these experiences, I have come to see two impulses at work, the nostalgic and the utopic. The nostalgic focuses on “the good old days,” memories doled out like cups of sugar and lined with white-picket fences. Recollections of a time where things were simply “better.” 

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Are You Prepared for an Emergency?

Posted by Glenda Cooper on September 18, 2019

We are often told to be prepared for an emergency by having 72 hours worth of supplies on hand. Equally important is getting to know and build relationships with your neighbours.

In fact, these relationships are essential during an emergency and in the days following an extreme weather event when emergency personnel are overwhelmed. During an emergency your first responder will likely not be a first responder; it is more likely that a neighbour will be the first person on the scene.

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Hippocratic Oath for Community Workers

Posted by Jim Diers on August 28, 2019

“First, do no harm.” This dictum is frequently but mistakenly associated with the Hippocratic Oath. Although it was disconcerting to learn that our physicians are not guided by this rule, I’m suggesting that it be adopted by community workers as the basis for our own code of conduct. We need to acknowledge the ways in which we often inadvertently harm the very communities we are trying to help and pledge to work in ways that contribute to their health. Here, then, is an outline of principles I would like to see included in a Hippocratic Oath for community workers whether they are social workers, recreation coordinators, clergy, community police, public health workers, planners, educators, service learning students, outreach staff, organizers or other community-based professionals.

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Creating Transformational (not Transactional) Experiences When Engaging Residents

Posted by Lisa Attygalle on August 22, 2019

What comes to mind when you think of a transformational experience? 

Here’s what it likely does not look like: Filling out a survey; being handed an information card; or responding to a public notice.  

Community engagement practices can often feel transactional: the community is a source of information and the goal is to retrieve that information to design the ideal solution. We say thank you and then move on. 

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Get to Know Your Neighbours, They Might Just Save Your Life

Posted by Heather Keam on August 21, 2019

It seems that there are more and more disasters happening all around the world. As I wrote this my power went out and it was 38 degrees outside. It may not seem like an emergency but what if the power was out for a long time, what would we do? How would my neighbourhood survive in this heat? What could I do to help them?

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