Wednesday, August 29, 2007


After Tuesday’s discussion, the biggest questions in my mind were: how do community leaders get citizens involved in sustainable development? What are some basic strategies that community leaders can use to facilitate change? I chose to read Chapter 5 “Celebrating Assets and Creating a Vision,” (p 86-98) because I felt this chapter reveals a couple of basic approaches toward creating a sustainable community.
Chapter 5 Main Points
• The first step toward gaining support for a sustainable community movement is to start celebrating the community’s assets. This action creates more awareness to all that is special and positive in a community and begins to create a positive environment for change. People want to be proud of their community and as more attention is focused on the positive things in a community, more value is placed on these assets and more desire to save and preserve them. Hallsmith calls for leaders to administer a survey to determine the community’s assets. The survey will show the community what they value and how they are effectively meeting their needs. When there are common values and goals in the community it becomes easier to preserve the assets and sustain them for the future
.• After the surveys are compiled, it is important to make an assessment of how all the assets are meeting the community needs. An inventory should be conducted to note how sustainable or unsustainable the current practices are. This community “sustainable health report” will give the community a whole view of where the community needs to fill in the gaps to become more sustainable and is the basis for a comprehensive plan.
• Finally the community should adopt a community vision based on the surveys and sustainable practices assessment. The community vision should entail all the goals for the city including social, economic, sustainable, ect. The vision should articulate how the community would like to be in the future. The vision should be relatable to all the citizens and invoke excitement and passion.
Hallsmith states that these steps aren’t easy and most attempts will fail. However, this chapter provides basic action steps for a community to start the progression towards a sustainable community. Absolutely there will be citizens that are unable or unwilling to be a part of a sustainable movement. However, Hallsmith’s tries to provide steps to apply to begin to gain support.

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