Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Shift is NEAR...Are you Ready???

As always the days have been vibrant since the last time I posted. I have attended some exciting meeting, events, fundraisers and connected with more people who are definitely on my same wavelength...So much so its been difficult to stop, write and reflect on many of these experiences.  When I do have time to contemplate, I am reminded that these are simply steps towards a powerful movement, that will ultimately SHIFT the perception of our misrepresented community.....The SHIFT is NEAR....Are you Ready??

A few highlights these past few weeks was my monthly alderman's meeting for the 6th Ward.  Usually there are at least 50-75 attendees and I must say at these ward meetings there is LOTS of useful information shared that residents should be aware of...For example, a rep spoke about the TIF 67th & Wentworth area that outlines many areas in Englewood and other neighboring communities. I am particular concern about the old KKC site...As a resident I would to have a grocery store like a Whole Foods or even Trader Joes...

Ok now I may be pushing it but still can't I dream of what I would like to see developed at this site? I know for certain if residents are not organized to take part in the decision making process, our voices will never be heard and we will just have to deal with whatever comes our way....Right?? WRONG!!! At that meeting, I met a few veteran organizers looking to join forces and strategically plan in order to SPEAK UP for our community! The SHIFT is NEAR....Are you Ready??

This ties right into another highlight, the collaborative forum workshop led by Ray Thompson. This was with a small group of residents who are basically "Human Assets" of the community who are all committed to improving the quality of life in Englewood. The ABCD (Asset Based Community Development) model focuses on the assets throughout the community in order to SHIFT the perception of Englewood from always being view as "needy" to  when there are may folks who are actually "advantaged". 

If we continue to collaborate, identify and utilize these assets all around us like the libraries, parks, residents, etc., I am certain a SHIFT will occur! To learn more about this perpetual shift please link here.

Like I mentioned in my last post, its time for the residents to stand up and take back our community from these foreign invaders...i.e., other ethnic groups, agencies, churches, politicians, etc...With a population of over 50,000 residents we are technically a city within itself...Just imagine if 5% of this population join forces...Wow, what a POWERFUL SHIFT that would be....Are you Ready??

Onward to another topic....We just finished up another enjoyable Docs & Dialogue session on Oct. 2nd and I definitely see this project as another powerful tool that brings all the community assets together in one room.  Although many enjoy watching the film then  talking about it....however, I am now noticing many of the attendees are ready to take this dialogue a step farther!  THEY ARE READY TO TAKE ACTION!! I can definitely see solution based organizing being a follow-up to a Docs & Dialogue session! Stay tuned...

I must say I wish it was more events  in Englewood that bridge generational and social economic gaps! Listening to the experiences of our elders while looking at issues from the eyes of our youth is exactly what we need to make a major SHIFT!  I so appreciate all who support this project and contribute to the powerful dialogue and networking that occurs at each session!   

For a detailed recap of Docs & Dialogue please link here.  Also, if you are ready to make a SHIFT to become more civically engaged in the community feel free to email me at There is a always a need to share our gifts to enhance the state of our community....

Well this upcoming week is packed with networking events, meetings and more! To quickly recap here are few events open to the public and community leaders:

Oct. 9th-Docs & Dialogue West Englewood Library-Youth Only (Space is Limited)

Oct. 12th-Networking reception at Perry Mansion Cultural Center - 7042 S. Perry-RSVP Required

Oct. 13th-ABCD Collaboration Forum at Safety Network 5958 S. Marshfield

Oct. 22nd-Live Performance MUGABEE feat. band All Chocolate at Hamilton Park 513 W. 72nd.

Oct. 30th-So Fresh Saturday Halloween Edition -Location TBA

I am sure there are more events happening that I may have missed, don't be alarmed, Englewood now has its own resident based website here:

Do you have some GOOD news to share?? Want your business listed in the directory? Or are you hosting a community event? Sign up and post that info here>>>>>

Believe it or not some of us are technically savvy too!

I think that's it for now...Just remember despite the news coverage we received the are OPPORTUNITIES & GREATNESS here. Please recognize that the SHIFT is NEAR...Are you ready? I hope so, because I know I AM!!

Until next time, TAKE ACTION to CREATE the life you truly desire!!!

Asiaha (Ay-sha) Butler

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