Friday, January 29, 2016

Building Community Wealth: Role of Cities

I wrote an article about the Role of Anchor Organizations in 2013 after hearing the Democracy Collaboration talk about this.  An anchor organization is a hospital, university, or other institution that is a long-term part of a neighborhood, and often the major employer.

Today I've been listening to a panel discussion titled: Cities Building Community Wealth: A Gathering at the CUNY Law School.  Here's a link to the video.  

When I focus on volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs I'm thinking of them as a form of bridging social capital, that connects people from high poverty, mostly segregated neighborhoods, with people, ideas and resources from beyond the neighborhood. Such programs can have a transformative affect on the lives of young people, if they are available in the neighborhoods where young people live.

To me, anchor institutions should be the lead convener trying to make such organizations available in the areas where they operate.

Since we're in the middle of a Presidential campaign, and inequality, wealth gaps, Black Lives Matter, and so many issues are at stake, the comment made by the Mayor of Madison, Wisconsin is really important.

"We've elected progressive Mayors. They just have been too ineffective in governing."

Nearly 1000 people attended this weeks Mentoring Summit in Washington. I followed the even via live stream and Tweeted using #mentoringsummit2016.  I hope that this results in a growing number of tutor/mentor leaders from around the country, and Chicago, looking at this blog, and then looking for ways to motivate their volunteers and students to spend time looking at my articles, and the links I point to, like today's panel discussion.

There's lots that needs to be learned. 

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