What We Do
Jacobsville Join In (JJI) engages people to work together to solve their own problems and change their neighborhood for the better. Our role is to see that the people and structures are in place to create coherence and integrity for the neighborhood. *JJI is responsible for expanding the membership base, maintaining a focus on action, and preserving democratic, participatory structures and processes. JJI accomplishes neighborhood engagement by:
- Listening to residents and stakeholders, who know the community, while helping them to develop the self-confidence to try new things.
- Sharing information and raising questions, options, alternatives and problems that affect the collective power the neighborhood can wield.
- Doing fair share of the work, while striving never to do for others what they can do for themselves. In other words, work with, not for, the neighborhood.
- Empowering individuals to speak for themselves by identifying and developing a diverse group of members who agree to serve as the neighborhood’s public voice on a variety of issues.
- Understanding the power relationships and political agendas surrounding an issue, and analyzing the social, political and economic forces that shape the community to develop sound organizing strategies based on this power analysis.
- Recruit and develop leaders, seeking to discover the skills, talents and interests of current and potential neighborhood leaders, and encourage shared leadership – believing that everyone has the potential to lead if given the opportunity.
- Build public relationships based on the general needs of civic and community life.
- Facilitate meetings and strategy sessions that are productive and focused.
*Adapted from Western Organization of Resource Councils “How to Understand the Role of a Community Organizer.”