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Section 1 – Introduction

Introduction Community Based Economic Development Strategies for Grand Rapids Central City Neighbor hoods

Neighborhoods are the basic building blocks of cities. Urban neighborhoods incorporate a wide range of uses and can differ greatly in almost all measurable characteristics. Neighborhoods are dynamic in that each experiences constant inflows and outflows of residents, materials, and money. Consequently, neighborhood stability is dependent upon balancing these opposite flows. Community economic development is designed to develop a sustainable, balanced community. Who This Manual Will Help This manual is targeted at Neighborhood and Community-Based Organizations (CBOs) in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Targeted Areas in Grand Rapids (see map in Appendix). It is important to recognize that this workbook can not address every aspect of Community Economic Development (CED). CED is a complex subject. This manual focuses on organizational capacity building, CED, and some of the tools that community-based organizations may use to encourage CED. How to Use the Manual The manual is presented in five sections: 1 Introduction 2 Organizational Capacity Building & The Bridge 3 What is Community Economic Development 4 The Toolbox 5 Final Thoughts

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Section One- Introduction includes an introduction to the manual, an explanation of who it will help, and how to use it. Section Two- Capacity Building. “The Bridge” recommends five components of capacity that are vital to enabling a CBO to perform economic development activities. While this section does discuss how to prepare your organization for community economic development, it does not define which organizations should attempt CED or what their role in an economic development program should be. The manual leaves this question for you to decide. Section Three- CED defines Community Economic Development and explains the goals that drive such activities. The manual breaks CED activities down into categories and briefly explains each. Section Four- Toolbox. Provides a list of tools that enable CBOs to perform Community Economic Development. Each section provides a description of the tool, how it may be accessed, and who to contact for more information. Contents of the Toolbox are indicated by the following symbol:

Section Five- Final Thoughts. This section offers a brief wrap up of Community Based Economic Development in Grand Rapids.

community development guide  


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