There is no substitute for community when it comes to preventing crime, responding to disasters, enhancing our health and happiness, caring for one another and our planet, creating a vibrant democracy, and advancing social justice. Strong communities are needed now more than ever due to the current economic and environmental crises.

Yet, our communities and our democracy have also been in decline for some time. Government, non-profits and other institutions that are seeking to help are inadvertently contributing to that decline. Based on his 35 years of community work in Seattle, Jim Diers shares lessons for building broad and inclusive community participation. He emphasize the power of focusing on the strengths rather than the needs of individuals and their neighborhoods. Jim shares stories of hope from his international travels to illustrate what is possible when individuals and institutions rediscover the power of community. Jim Diers has a passion for getting people engaged with their communities and in the decisions that affect their lives. Since moving to Seattle in 1976, he put that passion to work for a direct-action neighborhood association, a community development corporation, a community foundation, and the nation’s largest health care cooperative. He was appointed the first director of Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods in 1988 where he served under three mayors over the next 14 years. Currently, Jim teaches courses in community organizing and development at the University of Washington and serves on the faculty of the Asset-Based Community Development Institute. He travels internationally to deliver speeches, present workshops, and provide technical assistance to community associations, non-profit organizations, and government. Jim received a BA and an honorary doctorate from Grinnell College. His work in the Department of Neighborhoods was recognized with an Innovations Award from the Kennedy School of Government, a Full Inclusion Award from the American Association on Developmental Disabilities, and the Public Employee of the Year Award from the Municipal League of King County. Jim’s book, Neighbor Power: Building Community the Seattle Way, is available in both English and Chinese editions. Thanks to Plymouth Church, Seattle Washingto
Program Details
Episode S1E9
Broadcast Week Feb 19th 2012
Duration 00:58:00
Audience Rating TV-G
Genre Action
Theme Academic & Education
Language English

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