Promoting Community Development and Advocacy

GOAL:

Promote citizen participation and government responsiveness by forming a Cleveland Heights Neighborhood Council that will:

  • give a structure for citizens to voice their needs and concerns to government in a way that increases government responsiveness,
  • provide a space for neighborhood representatives to open dialogues with each other and better understand the diverse challenges that different Cleveland Heights communities face, and
  • increase civic awareness and participation through individual citizens’ engagement with their Neighborhood Representatives.

Cleveland Heights is a city of neighborhoods. We love our block parties. We talk with each other when we’re out for walks. We look out for each other when times are tough. This is one of Cleveland Heights’ greatest strengths.

But, if we do not harness this strength thoughtfully, it can weaken our larger community. We risk becoming too insular and losing the ability to understand the perspectives and challenges of other neighborhoods within our city. And over time, this can create friction between different areas of town as they compete for resources and support.

We need to create a structure that will encourage engagement and dialogue not only within neighborhoods but also across Cleveland Heights’ communities. This will give individuals who may otherwise feel alone or powerless an avenue for being heard and getting problems solved. It can also be a great way to facilitate innovative solutions to community challenges.

Neighborhood Councils are in place in towns and cities across the country. They improve communications between residents and government as well as among different neighborhoods within the larger community. It makes sense that Cleveland Heights should have a Neighborhood Council as well.

How I Will Increase Community Development & Advocacy

I will create a Neighborhood Council in which Neighborhood Representatives

  • speak with each other on behalf of their neighborhoods to build common ground, mutual support, and thoughtful solutions to local challenges, and
  • bring their statements to the Cleveland Heights Mayor’s Office and City Council for consideration and roadmaps for next steps.