What happened to build back better?

Posted on March 7, 2022
By Paul Born

I know that we are all exhausted by two years of COVID ravaging our communities! We just want it to go away and “please just let us get on with our lives”. I just want to hang out with family and friends, go to a café, a movie a concert. I am so desperate for safe human contact that I even long for a real face to work meeting to discuss real issues with real people!


Remember a time when we said, “we do not want to go back to normal, we want to build back better.” Are we so fed up with COVID that we are even willing to let up on that most important goal?


Embracing a Build Back Better Approach

At Tamarack we want to embrace a build back better approach to COVID recovery and feel that would best happen with cities building community-based COVID renewal plans.

COVID-19 has impacted our communities in unimaginable ways. People have become very ill and too many have died. Children are uncertain about their future and their education has been compromised. Businesses have closed and many will not reopen. The wellbeing of those in cities and communities has been impacted on a scale few of us thought possible.

In the midst of this mass disruption, we have also seen resilience. Neighbours are reaching out to neighbours. Citizens are acting responsibly and practicing physical distancing to collectively combat the virus. Our health system workers are acting heroically. We have seen new ideas emerge while old ideas are being challenged.

Our cities and communities are where people live. It is here we see the effects of public policy and it is here where we will address the issues that matter most to community members. The choices made today will impact how we recover and see renewal from COVID-19. If we want a future where our cities are thriving, we need to work together to achieve a collective community-based response.

Building a Community-Based COVID Renewal Plan

Lisa Attygalle and I have worked together to develop a workshop that is based on 10 foundational ideas to support your community to build an action plan that will reignite and engage people to work together. We will discuss the kinds of strategies we need when responding to situations that are complex in nature, and how to use an Emergent Learning framework to develop a response. We will also share 5 patterns of collective mindsets and 5 patterns of collective practice to shape your community renewal. Most importantly, you will work and learn together with your peers and leave the workshop with a framework to develop a community-based COVID renewal plan.

We would love for you to join us – Learn more here.


Lisa Attygalle, Paul Born, Community Change, Community Readiness, COVID-19, Homepage Blog

Paul Born

By Paul Born

Paul is a large-scale community change facilitator. He is the author of four books including, Deepening Community and Community Conversations, two Canadian best sellers. He is the Co-founder of Tamarack and for 20 years was the CEO/Co-CEO. Paul continues at Tamarack as a coach and trainer providing coaching and training to communities interested in achieving population level change. On Sabbatical until October 2022.

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