One of our top priorities for the Gravois-Jefferson Historic Neighborhoods Plan is ensuring it will spur equitable investment and action in the community. In order to accomplish this, we are emphasizing community organizing and relationship building throughout this process. The “Resource Groups” are a key component of this strategy. Developed in partnership with the Steering Committee, the resource groups will form around the eight plan focus areas (listed below) to involve stakeholders in plan development, effectively increasing communication among partners, breaking down silos, building support for strategies, and sparking implementation.
Through our public process, we have learned there are key values that will be embraced in plan development and future community investment. The Community Vision Statement demonstrates this: “Our vision is for accessible, sustainable, inclusive neighborhoods where families and individuals thrive in a diverse and historically rich, engaged community.”
Key values include preservation of diversity and density, application of a racial equity lens to outreach and strategies, inclusive development that supports low-income residents.
Plan Focus Areas:
These focus areas will serve as the platforms around which resource groups are convened and plan recommendations are developed (in order of community prioritization):
- Safety and Security
- Youth and Education
- Employment and Business Development
- Housing and Community Development
- Health and Community Services
- Transit, Streets and Walkability
- Arts and Culture
- Environment and Ecology
Purpose of Resource Groups:
Coordinate – Consult – Act – Evaluate – Advocate
The resource groups help to involve stakeholders in plan development, effectively increasing communication among partners, breaking down silos, building support for strategies, and sparking implementation. They also connect trained practitioners with passionate community members to develop cross-scale relationships and build a platform for sustained change.
These convening of these stakeholders should be within the scope of community input (use focus area matrixes) and ask questions such as: “how does the work of your organization address community input?”, “where is this organizing already taking place?”, “who else ought to be a part of this conversation?”, and “what is the most effective collaboration model moving forward?”
Participants should include both practitioners and community leaders. The initial meeting will be based off list of proposed partners from past meetings, in addition to steering committee members who self-identified interest and other community members to be identified. Self-identified Steering Committee members will be involved in building the invitation list and meeting agenda.