Jim Diers Community workshop – Inspiring Communities

Jim Diers from Seattle and invited by NZ Inspiring Communities led a workshop at Avondale. Over 100 people from a range of Community Groups throughout Auckland were in attendance.

Louise & Andrew Sinclair attended on behalf of Patumahoe Village and Whakaupoko Landcare and their comments are as follows:

It was a great workshop with emphasis on the positive about what communities can do rather than what they can’t do. This was reinforced by examples of many successful stories over the years with Communities finding innovative solutions to enhance their communities. Some key points were:
1 While think big, specific projects are excellent as the outcomes are very visible and tangible for everyone to see.
2 Find ways to personally connect with all in the community and target communication leaders within your community as key contact people.
3 Stay positive, have fun and have lots of parties / activities to allow the community to connect and interact.
4 Recognise and enhance community bumps (places where people meet).
5 Focus on peoples abilities and not disabilities. Recognise the wide range of skills and attributes everyone has to offer.

Jim Diers is (an internationally recognized community builder, faculty member of the Asset Based Community Development Institute and inaugural director of the City of Seattle’s pioneering Department of Neighbourhoods.

A brief background on Jim Diers is below and links lead to more information.

In past visits, Jim has used his experience to help local councils develop their own programs of bottom-up planning and matching grants to support community self-help projects. Jim has also worked with community associations to share the lessons he learned as a community organizer about building broad and inclusive community engagement. Jim has conducted practical, full day workshops on how to map and mobilize a community’s strengths. In addition, Jim has delivered inspiring speeches full of stories from his work throughout the world about how communities have organized to revitalise downtowns, prevent crime, preserve the environment, create art, grow food, demand justice, and care for one another.

He would be happy to work with you to tailor a presentation or workshop to best meet the needs of your organisation.

Jim’s work has been recognized with an honorary doctoral degree from Grinnell College, Public Employee of the Year Award from the Municipal League of King County, and an Innovations Award from the Ford Foundation and Kennedy School of Government. You can read more about Jim’s work in his book Neighbor Power: Building Community the Seattle Way and, for more information or to book some of Jim’s time, please contact: jimdiers@comcast.net