2015 Spirit of Portland Awards – Nominations now being accepted through Friday, Sept. 11Read More…
ONI Main: 503-823-4519
City/County Info: 503-823-4000
1221 SW 4th Ave, Suite 110, Portland, OR 97204
When you live in a city like Portland, with neighbors and criminals and laws and a love of process, finding answers to life's questions large and small can take hours, even in the age of instant information. Sometimes, a person is quicker.
The video looks at the first five years of the DCL Program and at the 5 partners.
Diversity and Civic Leadership video is now finished. The video looks at the first five years of the DCL Program and at the 5 partners.
Grant supported two years of the annual Good in the Neighborhood Multicultural Music and Food Festival, an event that brings together neighbors, local businesses, and community resources at King School Park with two musical stages, food and craft vendors, twenty-two community resource tables and a parade. A lasting benefit from the event is these groups forming relationships which last long after the festival and produce numerous community benefits.
Good in the Neighborhood Multicultural Festival is currently in its 20th year of operation, a music and food festival in Northeast Portland attended by over 10,000 residents along with a parade of 2,500 participants. Festival goers consider the event a, "big backyard bar-b-que because it brings neighbors together who haven’t seen each other since high school, or use the event to see people they don’t see until they come to the event," says festival chairwoman Cheryl Roberts.
However, the celebration also serves as a venue for new and emerging entrepreneurs who may not have access to other traditional marketplaces to sell their art, craft, and other maketable goods. Likewise, for many in the community it’s a resource for facilitating access to local jobs, civic opportunities, housing, and a multitude of other opportunities in the neighborhood.
Notes Roberts, the goal is "to highlight what’s good in our neighborhoods…to provide a venue for residents, not just in the neighborhood of King, but throughout the city, who want to participate and sell their goods and to get a hold of important resources."
Festival organizers say such a resource in the community is ever more critical now due to the ecnomomic downturn over the past few years. Says Roberts, whose regular job is as Executive Director of the African American Alliance for Homeownership, "I think the challenge for me is identifying those long-term impacts in the community that we can highlight, rather than focusing solely on what the festival does for the three days."
Economic downturn has also presented challenges with identifying a lead corporate financial sponsor. Long-time sponsor Washington Mutual was a casualty of the recession. However, Roberts and other organizers have been aggressive and creative in their acquisition of sponsors, such as holding awards for longest running sponsors – Safeway and Caruso Produce. Organizers have been very savy working with their long-time fiscal sponsor Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods (NECN) utilizing their neighborhood small grant to cover City permits and fees which accompany a festival of this size and scope.
Even more critical to maintaining continuity over so many years has been Robert’s success in building a thriving volunteer leadership team, The Good in the Neighborhood Planning Team. As a long-time organizer she has consciously offered leadership building exercises at meetings, has been very conscious and respectful of volunteers’ time, and organized planning meetings that are "well organized, start on time, end on time, and offer a place where they can contribute, while being appreciated for their commitment."
"Several team members," states Roberts, have become chairs and co-chairs of civic and school groups, contributing their leadership development to their experience as a Good in the Neighborhood planning team member." A key to their success in building both a great event and leadership is her willingness to "let people be creative," but also challenge them by not letting, "anyone put forth an idea if they aren’t willing to execuite it." The event has truly become a community treasure that is organized by, enjoyed by, and for the betterment of the community.
“Sunday Parkways events are a great opportunity to get to know your neighborhood and your city. Nancy and I have attended them. As family-friendly events go, these can’t be beat,” said Portland Mayor Charlie Hales.
It’s also a great opportunity to get out and meet and or recruit your neighbors! Time and time again I hear from people who are new to Portland and even from people, who have lived here for years, it is really hard to meet people...or it is really hard to recruit people for community activities! That may be true but ask yourself… what kind of effort have you put into getting out there and trying? I have a suggestion for you…it’s called Sunday Parkways! Sunday Parkways is a series of free community events, put on by the Transportation Bureau.
Essentially the City opens it’s largest public space – its streets – for people to walk, bike, roll and discover active transportation. It takes place one Sunday each month from May through September in a different area of the city and you can find more information about Sunday Parkways at www.PortlandSundayParkways.org and by calling 503-823-7599.
So okay now you know about Sunday Parkways but how is that going to help you get to know your neighbors…well here are my tips to meeting your neighbors at Sunday Parkways:
Hit the front lawn: I know we don’t always hang out on our front lawns but if your house happens to be on the Sunday Parkway route it’s the perfect opportunity to get out and meet people. You could invite some friends and family to join…have a picnic, set up some lawn games, let the kids have a lemonade stand. Last year while hanging out with friends in North Portland their neighbors set up a sprinkler so participants could stop by and cool down.
Dress Up: Costumes are not only fun they are a great conversation
starters. And if you are a little shy about dressing up…dress up your bike or wheels you use to cruise along the route.
Bring a Dog: Borrow one if you have to but people love to talk to dogs and will sometimes talk to the people with them. I hear this also works with babies but they are harder to borrow…I think!
Hand Bills: These are small flyers usually the size of a fourth of a piece of paper, it’s “old school” but still effective. Say you are part of your Neighborhood Association or Your Neighborh
ood Watch…or maybe you want to get a group of folks in your hood together to do some disaster prep
aredness, hand out hand bills!! Make sure to include when and whe
re your group meets and some contact info. Also put it in a large font so it is accessible to everyone. You would be surprised about how many people don’t know about these kinds of neighborhood activities and the handbill gives you a segue to start a conversation about them!
GO: I know it’s the most obvious one… but I know some people think if they are not going for a bike ride Sunday Parkways isn’t for them. There are lots of ways to enjoy Sunday parkways. Bike it, walk it, ride your wheelchair, scooter or Segway, rollerskates, rollerblades…heck hop on a little red wagon and use a pole Huckleberry Finn style! However you choose to mosey through put it on your calendar and “Just Go Do It!”
Actionshop: Interrupting Racism for Everyday Living, Sat. June 22, This interactive actionshop, put on by Resolutions NW, will explore what it means to be an ally and tools for interrupting racism.
Actionshop: Interrupting Racism for Everyday Living
Saturday, June 22, 2013
8:30am – 12:30pm
Location: Resolutions Northwest, 1827 NE 44th Ave. Suite 300, Portland OR 97213
Continental breakfast served.
This interactive actionshop will explore what it means to be an ally and tools for interrupting racism. Participants will practice-practice-practice!
The fee for this workshop is $100. We ask you to pay what you are able.
See our website registration page for more detailed information.
Space is available for 6 - 26 people; 1st come, 1st serve.
Please register at www.resolutionsnorthwest.org
*Please forgive duplicates and please feel free to forward.
Also coming soon at Resolutions Northwest:
Restorative Justice in Schools June 17-21 and offered again August 19-23
Race and Mediation Actionshop, Part I September 18
Your Life on Purpose: Let Your Core Values Kick-Start Your Action Plan September 20-21