Resilient Communities/ Resilient Families

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Operating Years:
2010 - present
Codman Square NDC, Mattapan Family Service Center, Nuestra Comunidad DC, ABCD, Bank of America, The Barr Foundation, The Boston Foundation, The Hyams Foundation, City of Boston Department of Neighborhood Development
Leading Community Development, Catalyzing Comprehensive Community Development
RC/RF invests in people and place and leads to vibrant neighborhoods full of opportunity and choice.
Modeled after successful comprehensive community initiatives sponsored by LISC affiliates in other cities, and developed in collaboration with local philanthropic partners, the Resilient Communities/ Resilient Families (RC/RF) initiative employs a strategic place-and-people-based approach to community development. The program will fund collaborative efforts in Codman Square/Four Corners, Mattapan, and the Warren Street Corridor in Roxbury that will bring together advocates and practitioners from across sectors and disciplines together with community residents to discuss community problems and potential solutions. Our  initiative will place a significant emphasis on community building and organizing strategies, believing that a resident’s network is an important asset that facilitates greater community and household efficacy. 
LISC Boston’s Role
LISC Boston will fund three convening agencies in our targeted neighborhoods to direct a community-driven planning process that produces a quality of life plan, or community contract, that outlines concrete action steps for many parties to manage: residents, municipal leaders, funders, community developers, public health advocates, educators, environmental stewards and public safety advocates. In addition to funding organizers and planning consultants to manage coalition-building and the participatory planning process, LISC Boston will provide funding for early action of implementation steps, and will leverage public and private sector support to implement components of the multi-year action plan. We estimate based on past experience that  every dollar invested in RC/RF will eventually leverage community-level investments valued at $5-10 so that a $1 million investment in a neighborhood will result in $5 to $10 million in additional investments or resources.
As the primary program manager, LISC Boston is responsible for program management, fundraising, administration and evaluation. In partnership with The Boston Foundation, we will play the convening role of the civic partnership. We will provide technical assistance to the neighborhood lead agency and to the community coalition. 
A Dual Strategy: People and Place
The goal of Resilient Communities/ Resilient Families initiative is to address both people and place and to echo the words the Boston Foundation’s strategic plan, encourage and support “thriving people” and “vibrant places.”

Five basic principles under-gird the theory of change embedded in the program’s proposed framework:

  • Juxtaposition and alignment of people and place, and investing in high need people and places
  • Community connections and capacity that enables residents to have control over their outcomes
  • Community-led, funder-supported partnerships where accountability and responsibility is held by the community and strategies and resources are generated in partnership with the funders
  • A generational investment that focuses on specific outcomes for families to break the cycle of poverty to achieve economic progress
  • Coordination of family focused services and quality of life investments at the community level and across funder interest areas

 Scope of Quality of Life Investments

LISC Boston intends for the scope of the planning process to encompass multiple disciplines that share a commitment to people- and place-based redevelopment of neighborhoods and that align with National LISC Sustainable Communities efforts. Convening agencies will work with planning consultants to design a community-based participatory planning process that will determine strategies, programs and activities to improve neighborhoods focusing on these areas:

  • developing the physical infrastructure of neighborhoods
  • building family income and wealth
  • stimulating local economic activity
  • improving access to quality education
  • encouraging the development of healthy environment and lifestyles.  

 You can download the full concept paper here or view the Resilient Communities/Resilient Families website here.

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