Love your neighbor.

Bernie on a Journey - Part 14 - October 21, 2019

10-22-2019

A photo from the Complete Count Committee kickoff on Friday, Photo Credit: The City of Fort Wayne.

One of the perks of my job is that it is a combination of research and public relations: so, I can learn and explore, while also making a point of sharing my research and the mission of NeighborLink with others. 

This week, like most, was packed with both research and outreach. 

In terms of research, I have been searching for new ways to get sustainable funding through grants and other programs, which led to me looking into NeighborLink on Guidestar and now the profile is fully updated! Guidestar is important because it is a national foundation database, adding credibility to NeighborLink and sharing our mission with national donors. I am happy to report that we earned their highest seal of transparency, the Guidestar Platinum designation (check us out here: https://www.guidestar.org/profile/52-2389393). In addition, I was able to look at some other cities' models for dealing with neighborhood development endeavors and how to adequately support renters. 

As to public relations, three key meetings occurred: the Southwest Area Partnership meeting, a YLNI Hot Spot and the Complete Count Committee Census 2020 kickoff. These meetings were informative and a chance to represent NeighborLink.

The Southwest Area Partnership meeting was a great part of my week because I was able to hear more about the city of Fort Wayne budget from Mayor Tom Henry, especially the upcoming allocations toward partnerships and the continual changes downtown. The Southwest Area Partnership also represents 3 of my 5 neighborhoods, where I get to hear them interact and voice concerns, successes and improvements.

Then I was able to engage with other young professionals at the YLNI Hot Spot. NeighborLink has been trying to connect with younger demographics in order to encourage lifelong habits of volunteerism, and this was a great venue to make such connections. Other ways we have been trying to connect is through schools, young adult groups and young adult professional societies. 

On Friday, I was able to attend the Complete Count Committee Census 2020 kickoff event. A Complete Count Committee is a community led group meant to raise awareness of, and participation in, the Census. While many people think the Census is boring and silly information gathering, the Census is actually incredibly crucial for the distribution of over $675 billion of annual federal funding. Unfortunately, the people who are most marginalized and most in need of federal funds are the least The Committee is comprised of various community related groups, such as non-profits, churches, media outlets, schools, businesses, and government groups. 

Finally, the weekend was spent on a fun and service oriented work. First, I was able to partner with Pettit Rudisill Neighborhood in their pocket park clean up, especially with weeding the landscaping as seen below. 

Second, I represented NeighborLink at The Summit for Pine Hills City Church's Fall Festival. Overall, it was a great week!

For this week's Bernie On A Journey click: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQUXAc6uVxs&list=PLMeUIoRiiGE7FZogxh8zLritXfTPQbv4i&index=17