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Bright Spots in ABCD

Our quarterly Bright Spots in ABCD series is a live, open, virtual conversation with neighborhood, community, and thought leaders that are building strong neighborhoods and vibrant cities using asset based community development. 

2023 Dates: April 26, June 7, Sept. 6, Dec. 6 (typically, the first Wednesday of the quarter)

Times: 12p-1p ET (US & Canada) via Zoom Webinar

Cost: Free, but registration is required. Links to sign up will be posted 1 month before.

Our first Bright Spot in ABCD show of 2023 will explore how bottom-up resident action and top-down municipal policy levers can work together to build strong communities where all people can thrive. We will visit with Jim Diers, an internationally sought after ABCD trainer and author of "Neighbor Power", as well as Howard Lawrence, Coordinator, Abundant Community Edmonton Neighborhood Services, and Joshua Joseph, Manager, Neighborhood Development Office at City of Kitchener

Save the Date: September 9, 2023 is Restoring Our Cities

Restoring Our Cities (ROC) is a cycling event for amateurs and cycling enthusiasts alike. The tour is organized by Great Lakes Urban and is open to the public for participation. Cyclists will be able to ride 5 to 75 mile routes. Registration is $35 to ride per individual or $25 per person for a family of 4 or more. T-shirts, snacks, and support is provided.

All proceeds will go toward helping the Connectors we support build strong neighborhoods and vibrant cities.

Past Bright Spots in ABCD Recordings

December 14, 2022: Bright Spot in ABCD

On December 14 we visited with Adam Barlow-Thompson and the staff at The Neighboring Movement as they discuss their unique strategy for inspiring, catalyzing, and nurturing authentic, gifts-focused community in the South Central neighborhood of Wichita, across Kansas through an animator network and nationally through the neighboring experiment.

September 14, 2022: ABCD Takes Root in Mansfield, Ohio

In September we visited with Deanna West-Torrence and her staff at the North End Community Improvement Collaborative to learn how they are using Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) to revitalize the North End neighborhood of Mansfield, Ohio. Learn how an asset lens helped turn a potential loss of $20,000 into a gain of $100,000. 

June 8, 2022: ABCD and Local Economic Development

On June 8 we visited with Rev. Damon Lynch, III, Gene Ellington, and Amber Twitty to learn how they used Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) to transform--both socially and economically--the Roselawn and Bond Hill neighborhoods of Cincinnati. Click the link below to view the recording. 

March 9, 2022: The Enduring Appeal of ABCD

Two of the great luminaries of the global Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) movement -- John McKnight, Co-Founder of the ABCD Institute, and Cormac Russell, Director of ABCD Europe -- join with Tecca Jones of Grand Rapids to discuss "The Connected Community: Discovering the Health, Wealth & Power of Neighborhoods."

December 1, 2021: Growing Change in Grand Rapids

Listen in to a moderated discussion with Wayne Squires, Director of Bates Place Neighbors, and two Community Connectors, Tecca and Luke, of the Baxter and Bates Place neighborhoods. You will learn how neighborhoods in Grand Rapids, MI are growing into safe and strong communities, and how you can support these efforts or start your own.

September 15, 2021: Learning to Listen in Godfrey Lee

Listen as Wyoming's Mayor, Jack Poll, our community connector in the Godfrey Lee neighborhood, Doris Perez, and Godfrey Lee resident and neighborhood team leader, Susan Van Bronkhorst, discuss how steady efforts to connect with neighbors add up to stronger, more abundant communities  

June 2, 2021: Hitting the Road: ABCD from Around the Nation​

Listen in as we gathered with leaders from VA, CA and TN to learn about how ABCD transforms neighborhoods and lives. We were joined by Cheryl Gross-Wright, Founder and CEO of Kaleidoscope Collaborative RVA, Amy Moritz, Founder and Principal of Amy Moritz Consulting, and Monika Grasley, Founder and Executive Director of Lifeline CDC. 

March 3, 2021: Human Connection Growing in Holland​

We heard from a sergeant of the City of Holland’s police force, as well as local leaders Amy Mares and Jay Van Groningen, about how neighborhoods in Holland are growing into strong and safe communities. Watch the recording to hear how asset based community development is having an impact in West Michigan.


Great Lakes Urban regularly provides introductory trainings on Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) and Dignity Serves. Demand is often greater than space allows. Register your interest with us now by leaving a message and we will put you on the list to attend our next workshop.

© 2023 Great Lakes Urban. All rights reserved.

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