Post

Beyond the Public Meeting: Raising the Bar for Equitable Community Engagement

Written by Aaron Goodman, CDAD Community Engagement Manager Equitable Public Involvement _____________________________________________________________________________ “When engagement is treated as an add-on to the “real” decision making or something that is done only to minimally satisfy legal or community requirements it leads to decisions, plans and developments that likely don’t reflect the input of the whole community.” _____________________________________________________________________________ We’ve...

Post

Measuring and Evaluating Neighborhood Change

Written by Nina Holzer, Manager of CDC Advancement, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress We’ve all seen them. Article after article highlighting the comeback of cities, flocking of millennials to urban centers and revitalization of downtown. Many rust belt cities, whose population numbers plummeted over to the course of the past fifty years, are starting to see a deceleration...

Post

Pro Bono Legal Referral Program

Written by Amanda Gregory, Legal & Policy Program Manager at Michigan Community Resources _____________________________________________ “This is frustrating for the organizations, because often the filing fee is all that is standing in the way of these immigrants working legally.” _____________________________________________ Several years ago, the Grand Rapids Dominican Sisters and the Michigan Immigrant Rights Center wanted to...

Post

Michigan eLibrary for Businesses

Written by Deb Renee Biggs, Michigan eLibrary & Outreach Coordinator, Library of Michigan ____________________________________ “Particularly for micro businesses, this could be a powerful resource to starting a business, as well as maintaining business practices.” ____________________________________ The Michigan eLibrary, otherwise known as MeL, is Michigan’s online library resource. With origins dating back from 1992, this free...

Post

Food Forward MI: Farm to School

__________________________________________________________________ “Combating childhood obesity, diabetes and other nutrition related disease can start in the classroom and extend to the family as students are educated and then empowered to make healthy food choices.” __________________________________________________________________ Rewind to 2015’s Where Food Access and Community Development Merge post, we reiterate that a community food system isn’t just about connecting...

Post

Food Forward MI: Agriculture Workforce Development

Written by Mary ZumBrunnen, CEO of One-Community Consulting ________________________________________________________________________________________ “…the gap between available talent and labor needed is expected to grow significantly over the next few decades. Once again, Michigan is at a crossroads of opportunity.” ________________________________________________________________________________________ Michigan is currently seeing a decline in small and mid-sized farms across the state. This trend has negatively impacted the state’s...

Post

Food Forward MI: Food Innovation Districts

____________________________________________________________________________________ “Michigan has tremendous opportunity to grow our health and economy while maintaining ecological diversity and cultural heritage.” ____________________________________________________________________________________ “A food innovation district is a geographic concentration of food-oriented businesses, services and community activities that local governments support through planning and economic development initiatives in order to promote a positive business environment, spur regional food...

Post

Affordable Housing is Out of Reach in Michigan

Written by Heidi Kurnaiwan, Policy Intern There is no state, county, or city in the United States where a full-time worker earning the prevailing minimum wage could afford a modest two-bedroom apartment. Only twelve counties and one metropolitan area has a minimum wage sufficient enough to even afford a modest one-bedroom apartment. These statistics are just...

Post

Food Forward MI: Food Sovereignty and Governance

Over the last few decades as food inputs and sourcing is of increasing interest to consumers and “buy local” campaigns grow more main stream, the idea of food sovereignty and governance frequently comes up. Who controls our food, food decision making and rights? Nationally, a rare bi-partisan compromise has helped move forward the Healthy Hunger-Free...

Post

Food Forward MI: Food Safety

Have you ever watched the news and heard of a spinach recall or wondered how a melon could hurt you? This past weekend my family and I went out to a restaurant and after staring at raw meat on the main floor through most of our meal, I finally had to ask for a server...