Hello Friends and Partners,
It’s mid-summer, and it certainly feels like we’re in one giant global fever dream. How are you? We know that people are experiencing vastly different types of lifestyles at the moment, and that your plans, your security, your normal functions, are taking on new forms and meanings. We hope you are safe and well, and are always happy to hear from you and to talk through any situation that is on your mind. Please stay safe, model good mask-wearing behavior (over your nose), and seek out conversations that challenge your perceptions about about race and privilege.
We’ve been holed up, practicing all of these things while innovating, and connecting as much as possible through digital and remote platforms. Our biggest talking point these past months: remote engagement does not only have to be digital! There are many ways to connect with others beyond Zoom, and we’re happy to share our thoughts. Speaking of sharing, we have just a few highlights from the last couple of months that we wanted to tell you about.
As you know, at Connect the Dots we truly believe in the magic of collaboration and always work to connect in with partners on projects. We want to hear from you…
- Is there engagement needed on a project / initiative, but you need support getting it started?
- Have you heard word of an upcoming comprehensive plan, visioning work, built environment, sustainability or transportation project with stakeholder involvement?
- Do you need support or advice on remote equitable engagement?
If we have not yet found a time to talk 1:1, please reach out and we can find a time to discuss your niche, your passion projects, or your goals for future collaborations.
Updates from the Irish Side
Our Irish office has been busy on several large initiatives, including a webinar on the Future of Cities featuring insights from international speakers & CTD directors on what our cities can be for citizens and how we can get there with equitable involvement. We are taking advantage of remote platforms to interact with experts all over the world on topics we care about.
And. some BIG news…In line with our mission to leverage our work towards advancing the SDGs, we have just launched our Pan-European project GOGREEN ROUTES, a 10.5 m EU project that aims to transform both environmental and human health, alongside 39 stakeholders 7 partners from 12 countries. Read more here.
This Month’s Project Spotlight: EDIT THE CITY (Knight Foundation award)
Along with our amazing partners THINK.urban (Katrina Johnston-Zimmerman) and Stae (Stephen Larrick), we are recipients of a Civic Challenge grant from the prestigious John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to lead a data-driven engagement process focused on enabling an equitable recovery and resilient future for one of America’s preeminent neighborhood main streets, South Street. See here for more detail.
We are always learning and adapting, and we are stepping up to the challenge of operating during a pandemic. Every few weeks, we add to our current understanding of best practices for equitable remote engagement, and we want to share them with you! Click here to download the document. We are also working with the City now to produce a remote engagement toolkit for Rebuild.
To further share our learnings in an open-source way, we are still offering Lunch & Learns to potential partners and providing workshops (such as a recent one with ImpactEd at UPenn and the nonprofits on one of their great programs). Do get in touch if you’re interested in connecting on this.
Digital Happy Hour and Networking Event Announcement!!
We’re excited to invite you to our upcoming happy hour, co-hosted with the wonderful Urban Geek Drinks. Quality, meaningful networking opportunities have been almost entirely set aside during the current era of social (physical distancing) and remote work. We wish to attempt a novel kind of networking that seeks to accomplish the basic functions of a networking event, while testing out some creative strategies on a virtual platform. Please join us for an evening of chatting and experimentation: a free-spirited yet lightly facilitated discussion space in which to meet new people, talk about all things urban, and drink from home in your comfy pants.
We hope that despite your (likely) current resentment for all things video-chat, that you will join us in search of genuine moments of connection and urban geekdom.
Re-connect with a happy hour on Thursday August 20th at 5:30pm
Upcoming Grant Opportunities
We are interested in pursuing some of the following grants and looking for innovative partnerships. Questions or interest in partnering up? Email us!
- HUD: https://www.hud.gov/cn
- TD Bank: https://philanthropynetwork.org/opportunities/td-ready-challenge
- The Barra Foundation: https://www.barrafoundation.org/investments/catalyst-fund/apply/
To speak to us about any of the above or to discuss an upcoming project or opportunity, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org