ReGen: Building Community with East Hills Consensus Group

Grounded is working to build the organizational capacity of East Hills Consensus Group (EHCG) so that it can quickly and effectively respond to community issues raised by the residents of East Hills.

EHCG identified three main areas of focus for improvement of their community: Improvements in Public Safety, Stormwater Management, and Community Beautification. As part of our previous work in East Hills, Grounded installed several rain gardens within the vicinity of Park Hill Drive. Continuing our work in this locale, we will expand on our original design: incorporating more amenities such as seating and a walking path will encourage more of the population to emerge from their homes and commune together in common spaces.

In order to better connect residents of the community, Grounded is working to increase awareness of EHCG throughout the community. We accomplish this through a multi-pronged approach, incorporating data-collection, community meet-and-greets, and information sessions. To date we’ve completed three such outreach events, including one in cooperation with Imani Christian Academy. By partnering with a local networking powerhouse such as a school, we’re able to gain a significant foothold in the community and spread word about the EHCG to a wider audience than might ordinarily have been reached through our canvassing efforts.

Additionally, we are hoping to boost and diversify the group’s membership to reflect the neighborhood’s needs. The consensus group is particularly interested in engaging younger members of the community to aid in the community revitalization process.

During each stakeholder interview, we are frequently reminded of the hope that residents harbor: that community ties will be re-knit and that violence (both against people and place) will end. Through the process of placemaking, Grounded Strategies hopes to reinvigorate a sense of community within the East Hills region.