Case study: asset-based community development, the Canadian way
- 26 April 2019
- Posted by: Helen Nicol
- Category: Resources
The Tamarack Institute is a Canadian consultancy focussed on supporting community change work, and they’ve recently published a case study looking at the application of Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) theories in Edmonton, the second largest city in the province of Alberta. Not sure what ABCD is all about?
Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) is a methodology that looks at the gifts and assets of people that exist within a neighbourhood allowing them to respond to, and create local opportunities. ABCD’s emphasis is on strengths, connections, citizen leadership, and the recognition that individual gifts become powerful when they are connected.
An organisation called Abundant Community Edmonton was established in partnership with some established experts in ABCD practice, and started out “with the intent to create more connections among neighbours through shared activities and interests”. The claimed results are fairly impressive:
This [project] resulted in the development of a growing partnership between citizens, neighbourhood leaders and municipal officials. The City provided administrative and organizational support, and became a dedicated partner, championing the initiative to ensure that it grew in a sustainable way. The initial pilot started in one neighbourhood, then expanded to three, and is now active or starting in 106 of Edmonton’s 260 residential neighbourhoods. As evidence of its success, in 2018 Edmonton City Council funded 3.5 staff solely dedicated to supporting the ACE initiative.
Not a bad outcome at all. Curious to find out more? Get yourself over to the Tamarack instituter’s website, then, and download the case study in full.