"If you're reading this, you should attend. It's open to the public and encouraged to anybody who lives in City Heights, who works here, who cares about the environment, the policies that affect City Heights, and opportunities for residents. Anybody who has that commitment is encouraged to attend," Steve Eldred.
The annual City Heights Community Convening is an opportunity for residents, as well as people and organizations who care about City Heights to come together and celebrate their successes and exchange ideas about building a healthier, safer, and more productive community.
We spoke to Steve Eldred, Senior Program Manager, at The California Endowment and this is what he had to say:
Tell me about the Community Convening:
"The City Heights Community Convening is an effort to support collaboration and integration within the community and across the different campaigns that make up the Building Healthy Communities (BHC) effort. To connect residents, non-profits, system leaders to come together to network, learn about what everyone is working on. The intent is to create a unified community voice to create the change in City Heights that residents want to see."
What's your favorite part of the Community Convening?
"My favorite part has always been the energy in the room and seeing so many people from different perspectives come together for a common purpose. It's very empowering to see the level of commitment people have for their community and the strong desire to work together."
What is the goal of the Community Convening?
"The goal is to reconnect, update each other on current campaigns and opportunities that are coming together, to recognize and appreciate the contributions that people are making through their campaigns and to look for ways to dig a little bit deeper."
How does the Community Convening connect to Building Healthy Communities (BHC)?
"The central goal of BHC is to build power and voice for an inclusive California. At the City Heights BHC level, that's what the Community Convening helps to do, to amplify the power and voice that’s been building and in action over the first Seven years of BHC and helps regenerate those activities into the future."
What does the upcoming Building Healthy Communities planning process look like?
"It's important to notice that final stage is still another three years, which is a long time in philanthropy and grant-making. It’s not at the end yet, not winding down, we still have three full years to continue at full speed. This cycle of planning process has two purposes, 1) to recognize we still have three years and to assess if we need to re-calibrate to meet the priorities of the community, and 2) to create an opportunity to think beyond the three years to set long-term goals and aspirations and use the three years to build capacity and help orient Mid-City CAN and community partners to create longer-term engagement."