|SERA, Inc. - Southeast Raleigh Assembly||
CIVIC ENGAGEMENT PROGRAMMING/PUBLIC POLICY PROGRAMMING
N.O.W. (Negotiating Our Way) Advocacy Program
Southeast Raleigh citizens often need assistance in finding and accessing services and programs that will meet their personal needs during the course of their daily lives for a variety of reasons such as:
While the N.O.W. program does not offer immediate crisis intervention services a N.O.W. advocate can assist Southeast Raleigh residents in determining the resources (in the Triangle area and in the State) that will best address their issue, problem or question. In some cases, the N.O.W. advocate will participate in the process by talking to the service provider, organization or agency and provide intervention services for the Southeast Raleigh resident as needed. While basic advocacy assistance is provided, the Southeast Raleigh resident is learning or enhancing his/her ability to demonstrate the self-advocacy skills needed to negotiate effectively on his/her own behalf in the future.
Southeast Raleigh Relationship-Based Consumption Program
This program will bring to the surface all the hidden talents and skills within the southeast Raleigh community as it relates to effective barter/trade and community consumption. Residents will be taught how to participate in a relationship based program, how to keep track of the deposits and withdrawals to their virtual bank, and how to barter/trade to utilize the talents of the community and provide their individual service to others.
Imagine this: You are a Southeast Raleigh resident. You are unemployed or underemployed. Your daughter is getting married next week; and although your resources are limited, you desire to give her a beautiful wedding. You are a seamstress, so you will make her dress, but what about the wedding cake? Wait a minute…Mrs. Samuels down the block has been making wedding cakes for years, and you hear she has a church function coming up for which she may need a dress. After talking with Mrs. Samuels, she agrees to make your daughter’s wedding cake, and you agree to make her dress for the upcoming church function. No money exchanges hands, yet both of you get what you need.”
This example in its simplest form is a process called “relationship-based consumption.” These hidden talents are so rich and deep that the community can work together to sustain itself and to provide for all its residents.
“Southeast Raleigh Voices” Problem Solving Collaborative Initiative
Southeast Raleigh Voices will collaborate to address the issues of ex-offenders re-entering our community, crime reduction, the feasibility of neighborhood schools, how to productively deal with institutional and systemic racism within the community, and business development that will create employment opportunities. Operating in an action oriented problem solving strategy to confront the issues residents will recruit and develop allies across the community, evaluate and eliminate barriers in order to create success in all the focus areas.
“Using Our Voice” Public Policy & Community Engagement Initiative
This initiative will teach the residents of southeast Raleigh community to recognize the power to their voice, thoughts and intentions to bring to fruition a more just, prosperous, safe, and economically viable community by peacefully influencing public policy and engaging their city, state, and federal government representatives and legislators.
Gail Sheeny, author, journalist, lecturer, has said, “if we don’t change, we don’t grow, if we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.” Change can occur by scrutinizing and working through the venue of public policy. Public policy can be generally defined as “the course of action or inaction taken by governmental entities (the decision of government) with regard to a particular issue or set of issues.
Southeast Raleigh residents will learn how to identify the systems within their community which need to change, what that change should look like and how to propose an alternative system to replace the one that is failing. Community members will learn how to develop whit papers (an authoritative report or guide that often addresses issues and how to solve them) to be presented to city, county, and state government leaders and other organizations, as well as develop public speaking skills. Residents of the Southeast Raleigh community will enhance their understanding of holding each other and themselves accountable as it relates to voting in local, state, and national elections for the good of the community as a whole. Community organizing skills will also be developed through this initiative.