Systemic Change at the Community Level

Neighborhoods of Hope Webinar Archive

This topic contains 1 reply, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Jack Murphy 3 years, 7 months ago.

  • Author
  • #609

    Jack Murphy

    Here is where you can view the presentation and listen to the webinar:

  • #641

    Jack Murphy

    I’m going to cross posting this reply, since it deals with both the metric question and the broader Community Level approach.
    The Systemic Change Task Force is working on adapting the Bridges Community of Practice model, which we are calling Neighborhoods of Hope. As is noted by the Bridges material, Planning Backwards can lead to real out of the box thinking and that is what we are suggesting with our approach to metrics.
    If our ultimate outcome is poverty reduction in a community, why not start there and back into the programs needed to impact that outcome? Of course the obvious answer is that there are way too many other factors that come into play, so why take on such a difficult challenge as impacting poverty?
    Put yourself back in the shoes of our founder, Blessed Frederic. How hard would it be for a small group of college students to organize a network of volunteers that will extend charity and justice around the world? Do you think those six students had any clue that their idea would have the impact that it has in today’s Society? I can’t imagine they did. The most they had going for them was the confidence that the Holy Spirit was guiding their work. That should inspire us all.
    Where do you start to develop these measures? Two places:
    1. Baseline data for my town: On this site, you can find poverty and employment statistics, and a bunch of other numbers down to a zip code level. Use this information to establish baseline data and measure progress each year (The US Census Bureau updates the figures every September).
    2. Jobs: Perhaps the surest way to get and stay on a road of self-sufficiency is to get, and keep, a job that pays enough to support a family. That means a conference will need to augment their Getting Ahead work by making sure graduates get and stay employed in good jobs:
    • Determining the “self-sufficient” wage for their community (start with this web site then validate with Vincentian experiences)
    • Find employers willing to pay that wage (we have one company that sends a van into a poor area to get folks to their manufacturing plant)
    • Use Vincentians as “job coaches” for the first year or so to help neighbors stay employed
    Using this approach can take our Getting Ahead work to the next level. It may also help us enhance our home visits to empower every Vincentian to systemically changing their interaction with a neighbor in need and really explore the kinds of assistance-financial, spiritual, and life changing, that our charism inspires.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.