‘The Big Meet-Up’ Will Celebrate the Small Successes

Nov. 15 gathering a place to share and learn about building abundant communities in Calgary


When it comes to creating abundant communities, taking time to celebrate and learn from the small successes can enable further thriving.

While that celebration might happen in a few different ways, The Big Meet-Up, a Nov. 15 gathering in Calgary offers a space for it to take place through people sharing their stories in a group setting.

Stephanie Sokolowski is one Calgary resident eagerly anticipating the workshop. Stephanie has been engaged in community development work for about two years through the Federation of Calgary Communities. She has come to collect a few stories of her own that energize her.

The Big Meet-UpFor instance, one community she worked with last fall has decided to tackle crime by bringing neighbours together and fostering a greater sense of pride and ownership amongst them.

On Nov. 14, this neighbourhood will be hosting a screening of a documentary from Edmonton called The Avenue. The film tells the story of an Edmonton neighbourhood taking back a street that had become wrought with crime, drug dealing and prostitution.

The hope is that in showing this video, the Calgary community will see how its own neighbourhood might create a brighter future.

Then there’s the story from Calgary’s Beltline Connaught community, which will also be shared at the workshop. This community had already been taking steps to connect around its gifts and possibilities when it became aware of a competition hosted by CBC’s The Eye Opener and the Federation of Calgary Communities to win a sidewalk library. Both the challenges and successes of that experience as a community-building exercise will be shared by one of the residents.

The Nov. 15 gathering is hosted by Calgary’s Community Development Learning Initiative (CDLI). CDLI was launched in 2013 by the City of Calgary Community and Neighbourhood Services, the United Way of Calgary and Area and the Calgary Foundation together with a number of engaged community partners.

The hope is that people who attend the gathering will both take away both wisdom and concrete to-dos.

Through CDLI, residents, organizations, practitioners, funders and institutions have an opportunity to share experiences and find common threads in their learning around community development.  This unique network offers a space to build capacity to support residents and practitioners, to build supportive relationships, and to take collective action around learning.

It has offered various opportunities for people to connect and learn from each other in smaller venues over the past year. The upcoming workshop is the first larger gathering.

The grand hope is that people who attend the gathering will both take away both wisdom and concrete to-dos as well as access to new connections and skills that can bring their work to even higher heights.

The goal is also to discuss how individuals can contribute to and participate in the CDLI group in the long run.

To learn more and participate, please visit The Big Meet-Up event page or phone Jill Koch, Project Lead at 403-287-0611.

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