Yes, you are a community organizer. I am too. Each of us is.
Recently, I’ve been reminded of this as I’ve heard various people say that downtown Blacksburg will never change – it’ll always be full of bars, a couple shops here and there, and vacant storefronts. Parking will always stink. It’ll never get better.
And then I ran across this video. Take just 15 minutes to watch this video – I promise, you’ll look at where you live as an opportunity and not a liability.
I showed this video to a friend, and she immediately told me why it couldn’t be done here in Blacksburg. “It’s too small”, she said. “College kids leave for the summers”, she said. So what?
- Show up. I’m reminded of time I served on the board of a Homeowners Association. I got involved because I was tired of complaining about our HOA, which seemed to have a host of rules and regulations that no one really knew why they were there, but “we were going to follow them”, regardless of whether they were the right thing to do or not. The same people showed up to each meeting, and virtually no homeowners – other than those on the board – ever attended the. It was a cycle of mediocrity, and nothing ever got down. If you want things to change, show up.
- Give it a name. Companies have names. People have names. Names give us identity. When Blacksburg created the Market Square Park, they didn’t call it “that half block at the corner of Roanoke and Draper Streets”. We want that identifying name, something to rally behind. And when people rally, things get done.
- Set a date and publish it. Force yourself to have a goal in mind. And as people find out about it, others will want to help.
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