Proudly. That’s how we at CEDAM describe the different projects our members are working on to our networks, friends and families. Our members continuously do more with less and it’s no surprise that their teams are comprised of passionate and driven communities. It is critical to get as many people on your side as possible, including state legislators, by helping them to understand what it is you do and why the issues that they vote on matter so greatly.
The Michigan legislators want to do more than just talk about the issues. They want to learn first-hand the different type of projects that you do with your community by lending a hand. The Legislators Building Communities (LBC) program is a summer-long initiative focused around affordable housing and community economic development.
Senator Caswell and Representative Kurtz jumped right in as LBC participants in 2011 and helped perform an “extreme makeover” in Hillsdale at the Opportunity House, a temporary shelter run by the Community Action Agency on Griswold street. In addition to understanding the organization and project more personally, they also learned that to finish, the project required 25 volunteers contributing close to 1,000 hours.
Owosso’s Emerson Elementary School celebrated Arbor Day this year with the planting of more than 30 trees, which helped to revive the Oak Grove on the school grounds. Streets were cleaned up in Detroit including four major area dump sites, the removal of over 700 used tires and maintenance of the neighborhood Community Art Lot. Representative Wayne Schmidt partnered with the Foundation of Mental Health in Traverse City and worked alongside residents who are formerly homeless, middle-aged men. Together the group worked in the house’s vegetable and flower garden and completed an outdoor fireplace.
And that is only a snapshot of the projects that took place. You and your communities do the work year-round. Take the opportunity to involve legislators in the projects that matter to you and strengthen your relationships for the future.
Now is the time to get your legislator involved with some of the things that you are working on. Contact Jessica AcMoody, Policy & Program Specialist if you are interested in getting involved in Legislators Building Communities.