Organizing Communities

Organizing Communities

Organizing a community is pretty simple. Just follow these steps:

Okay, so it may look simple, but it is not easy. It's actually quite a challenging process to organize an entire community. Fortunately, we've prepared "The Really Simple Guide to Organizing Communities." Take a look, see if it can be adapted to fit your community...

Now available -- the review draft

This process is based on a model that was developed in the early 1990's through the Conservation Council of Ontario and tested in seven Ontario communities. The results were diverse and amazing. Three communities used their plan to secure funding and become Green Communities; the City of Toronto ran a city-wide Toxic Free campaign involving 28 different organizations, and the City of Cambridge set in motion a City Green strategy that is still supporting community projects today. The model was updated in 2010 and you can view it here.

Organizing an entire community requires a significant commitment of time and resources, primarily from the lead group and coordinator, but also from all the participating and supporting organizations in the community network. The biggest hurdle can lie in starting the process, because it requires a shift in thinking and a commitment of time towards a collective approach. However, the benefits lie in co-promotion, enhanced fundraising, and the ability to link groups and their activities together in community-wide campaigns. Not only can a collaborative process increase the collective community impact, it can increase the individual impact of all the community organizations.

For other examples of community organizing programs and models that use some or all of the elements of our approach, see the Examples page.