“As soon as the phrase ‘civic engagement’ enters a conversation people become activity happy. Right away, you’ll hear them launch into an animated discussion of how many forums they want to hold, the number of flip charts they need, how many different color magic markers they want (and whether they are scented!), and concern over what to do with all the pages of newsprint they put up on the wall. It’s enough to drive me crazy.”
“Somewhere in the litany of activities we lose sight of our real purpose and the real people that we profess to care about. We push aside what we must actually learn from people; what we’ll do with what we learn; and the kinds of pathways into the community people are seeking to create for themselves. Instead, “people” become props in our process.”
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