- People do not have enough time
The most important thing in a city like Hayward is to build a sense of community participation. It is tough for individuals working alone to attain much. However, many people do not get more involved in the issues that are around them, especially events in Hayward, for various reasons. First, people do not have enough time, and community schedules are too inflexible. The most common reason from most people for not participating in Hayward activities is the lack of free time, and another reason is that Hayward’s commitments are too inflexible.
- People lack information
Second, why many people are not involved in Hayward activities is that they lack information about the events. Many people are not aware of the activities that are taking place at Hayward. This is because most of the activities taking place in Hayward city are not publicized effectively for the entire community to understand. As a result, many people are not aware of which activities to take part in. Therefore, it is challenging to participate in any community activities without the knowledge of the events.
- They are not asked to participate
Most people in Hayward city say that they do not participate in the activities because they are not asked. In regards to this, most people are willing to participate, but the issue is that they are not requested. Various organizations in Hayward are tasked with getting people to participate in different activities but they do not reach out to. A community-based organization can aid in asking people who can participate in different activities. Thus, many people can get involved in community activities if they are asked to.
Participatory budgeting offers an opportunity for people to engage in operations of deliberation based on the allocation of public funds. The model of budgeting has become a popular approach for supporting local democracy by enhancing the involvement of citizens in determining the allocation of public budgets. The movie on “participatory budgeting” responds to some of the questions regarding why some people are not involved in community activities like participatory budgeting. The process brings people from different areas to contribute and share on the projects they want the government to handle.
First, getting involved in activities such as the participatory budget will require ample time. An individual will need to create some time to discuss the anticipated budgets. As shown in the video, people create some time to discuss the issues of budget allocation for the community. Thus, it responds to the reason why people do not get enough time. Second, as stated in the video, everyone in the community is expected to take part in the participatory budget. Community members should vote for the proposed projects to exercise their democratic rights.
Misinformation is an issue in community participation. As stated above, most people do not participate in community activities because of misinformation. Some community members would like to participate in activities such as the participatory budget, but a lack of information hinders them. In the video, community representatives are supposed to inform people about the events. These community representatives should inform people around the events that they should take part in.
Article: Community Engagement Matters
- Using a top-down approach to manage a social change initiative
The article presents issues around social change. One of the aspects that interests me in the article is the use of a top-down approach to handle a social change initiative. In the article, it is stated that Christie and Booker used a top-down approach because they believed that the messy work of creating a consensus among the local stakeholders could undermine the reform. It is worth noting that both Christie and Booker believes that consulting a local stakeholder might affect the outcome of the project. A social change initiative should consider the people around the place as the key stakeholders. Based on this, using a top-down approach makes the process ineffective.
- Outsourcing the services of outsiders
In addition, it is interesting to note that Booker hired the services of people who are not members of the community to manage a social change initiative. People who are non-members of a given community are likely to be unaware of the pressing needs of the community. Thus, to successfully carry out the initiative, they would inquire from the community members to understand the social issues that are supposed to be addressed. This proves that members of a community are important in the management of a social change. That said, it was absurd for Booker and Christie to ignore the importance of public participation in the implementation of a social change initiative.
Patient urgency means that any project believed to be of great significance to the people in any given community should be treated with utmost urgency. The challenges that communities experience in the current society are serious and immediate. For instance, when people’s lives are at stake, and a project is expected to solve the problem, then it should be carried out with speed to help eliminate the consequences. However, acting quickly in completing a social project comes with significant risks. The urge to complete a project quickly will result in the use of the top-down approach, which will eliminate the need to consult the local stakeholders. Even with the challenges, the leaders should use a bottom-up approach for purposes of effectiveness.
The article “101 small ways you can improve your city” presents different activities in a community. It is important to participate in community activities. Out of the 101 activities stated in the article, I like the aspect of creating a little free library, plant a tree, and organize local car-free days. First, I like the aspect of creating a little free library in the community. There are students in the neighborhoods who would like to read, but they lack money to visit the libraries that are charged. Having a free library will help many students in the community because some of them come from low income earning families who are unable to pay for the library services.
Second, I like planting a tree because of its ultimate values. Trees are an important part of the ecosystem because they play an important role in the environment. Trees help to balance the air around us by absorbing carbon dioxide. Planting a tree will show the community the value of conserving the environment hence creating a healthy community. The move will create a culture of planting trees, which will translate to having a clean environment. Most of the health problems experienced by most people are attributed to the unclean environment caused by pollution.
Third, I like the aspect of organizing local car-free days because of its health benefits to the people. Organizing local car-free days will not only bring people together but also aid them in physical exercise. During car-free days, people will use bikes and walk to their respective destinations. The initiative will help people in understanding the health benefits of physical activities to an individual. A lack of proper exercise causes the health problems experienced in the community. Thus, organizing such events is important to the community.
MANAGEMENT: Empowering Needles in the Haystack
The two things that interest me in this article are the aspect of seeing diversity as a barrier to the involvement of the entire community and engaging the students in community activities. To begin with, it is interesting that the Hayward community realized that diversity in the corridors would affect their involvement in community programs. In this project, diversity was seen as a hindrance to overall community participation. Based on this, the community council wanted to create a system that would involve people in the community.
Another aspect that interests me in the article is the involvement of the students to help bring together the community, especially the ones in living in the corridors. The community council wanted a solution to the diversity barrier identified during the process. The reason for involving the students is that they can interact freely with people in the corridor. In addition, the students brought energy and enthusiasm to the operations. The student were able to interview hundreds of residents of the Tennyson corridor community. In this article, it is worth noting that the students worked efficiently in working together with residents to develop solutions for their problems.