Friday, February 14, 2014

Second Meeting of Santa Rosa Together, Feb 1, 2014


The second meeting of Santa Rosa Together was successfully held on February 1st, 10am to 12:30pm, at Lawrence Cook Middle School, 2480 Sebastopol Road, in Santa Rosa.  Eighty-five residents participated in the meeting, and notes from it are included below.

A third meeting will be held on April 12th, 2014 at the same time and place.   We can be reached by commenting on this post, and leaving your contact information.

The following ws distributed at the meeting:

Santa Rosa Together Second Meeting: From Vision to Action
Increasing Resident Engagement and Improving the Way We Work Together
Saturday, February 1, 2014
10:00am- 12:30pm
Registration, coffee and snacks begin at 9:30
Lawrence Cook Middle School
2480 Sebastopol Road

Second meeting agenda: From Vision to Action
1.     Welcome, introductions, review of progress to date, and expectations for today --Arnie Barragan  (10 minutes)

2.     Explanation of the process used to develop the drafts for our vision and for this year’s objectives --Hank Topper  (10 minutes)

3.     Discussion/Adoption of Vision and Objectives (30 minutes)
a.     Table discussions  (10 min)
b.     Large group feedback  (15 min)
c.     Thumbs up/down vote  (5 min)

4.     Identification of Possible Action Activities to reach our Objectives (80 minutes)
a.     Table discussion: Facilitators assist participants to identify action activities which would help us pursue this year’s objectives, defining barriers, resources, and additional participants.  Tables select top 5 ideas and summarize in LARGE writing on ½ sheets of paper. (25 minutes)
b.     Table Report outs: Using a blue sticky wall, each table reports out to the whole group on their ideas.  Ideas will be clustered by report-out person and facilitator.  (40 minutes)
c.     Priority Setting and Commitments: Each meeting participant will use 3 sticky dots to vote on priorities for action and commitment dots (as many as they want) to put their names on the actions that they will work on.  (15 minutes)

5.     Summary, discussion, and action items for next steps (20 minutes)
a.     Overview of what we’ve accomplished
b.     Next Meeting and Next Steps
c.     Final thoughts, takeaways, suggestions

If you are interested in being part of the Santa Rosa Together Planning Team, please contact Hank Topper at

Draft Vision

·       Santa Rosa has a strong democratic culture of mutual respect, dialogue, and inclusion that has improved our city’s ability to work together and address concerns.  Everyone’s voice and contribution are valued and encouraged and our mutual respect for each other supports our efforts to find common ground.  All segments of our community are equally valued, fully engaged, and playing leading roles in the development of a strong and healthy city.  Santa Rosa is known across the world for it democratic institutions and culture.

·       A large number of city residents are organized and actively engaged in setting the direction and doing the work to create a great city.  We are a city with a strong foundation of organized neighborhoods and communities where we get to know each other, take responsibility, and learn how to work together and take action to build strong communities and a strong city 

·       Governments and elected officials understand the importance of broad community engagement, support the organization of residents, and partner with residents and their organizations to make important decisions and to accomplish shared goals.

·       Our city’s business, religious, and social organizations contribute resources and services to support resident engagement and partner with residents and their organization to accomplish shared goals.

·       Santa Rosa has developed and institutionalized creative new ways to make it easier for citizens to become informed, learn from each other, and participate meaningfully in the decisions and work that will shape our city.  Our new ways of engaging people give them real power and responsibility and bring the decision process and work to our neighborhoods, schools, and churches to make it possible for everyone to participate meaningfully.

Draft Objectives

Objective 1:  We will take steps to improve the democratic culture of mutual respect, dialogue and inclusion in our city.
Objective 2: We will take steps to increase the number of engaged residents and organized neighborhoods and communities in our city.
Objective 3:  We will take steps to increase the capability of Governmental institutions and their respective policy/decision makers to support and partner with residents and their organizations. 
Objective 4:  We will take steps to increase the capability of our city’s business, religious and social organizations to support and partner with residents and their organizations
Objective 5:  We will develop a new process that increases the number of residents and their organizations participating in the decisions and the work to address a key community issue

Following the meeting, th Steering Committee assembled th following document from materials developed at the meeting:

Cross sector trust building (11/3)
Convene a “mixer” with multiple groups i.e. SR Chamber, Hispanic Chamber and Black Chamber, social justice and local residents to interact to build trust to work together.
Votes:  11
Volunteers:  Eduardo Vasquex, Gail Thomas, Veronica Jacobi

Youth (13/9)

Have a youth council with a rep from each school who talks with students, then goes to city to voice the youth opinion
                  Votes: 5
                  Volunteers: 2  Anna Ucik, Hank Topper

Plan a youth summit for all youth groups to build awareness of how youth can participate in key community issues
                  Votes:  6
Volunteers: 7  Yuni Mendoza, Itzel Martinez, Donna Born, Vince Harper,  Gregory Fearon, Roni  Jacobi, Kay Ward

 “Like” DIG and YEC on Facebook (youth organizations) as well as other groupd participating in SRT
                  Votes: 2
                  Volunteers: 0

Citizen Engagement and capacity (42/18)

SRT will develop a committee to organize neighborhood block potlucks to build community engagement.  Invite nonprofit organizations, local businesses (restaurants, etc.) community members to create ambassadors
                  Votes: 8
                  Volunteers: 2  Jamie Padilla, Irma Garcia

Encourage and strengthen neighborhood groups
                  Votes: 3
                  Volunteers: 1  Gregory Fearon

Map neighborhoods that have strong community ties – identify activities that bonds them together
                  Votes: 6
                  Volunteers:  4  Katherine ?, Alexa Riner, Pamela Van Helsema, Rolland Vander Sluis

Ensure common geographical definitions of neighborhoods between government agencies
                  Votes:  1
                  Volunteers: 0

Invite and encourage attendance to D.I.N.E., a program that brings community members to share a discussion over dinner.
                  Votes: 2
                  Volunteers: 0

Activate neighborhood conversations through social networks (Facebook group,
                  Votes: 0
                  Volunteers: 0

SRT will develop a resource sheet bilingual to provide to schools and other public places (church, clubs, YMCA, etc).  Start with Latino community
                  Votes:  3
                  Volunteers:  3  Jamie Padillo, Irma Garcia, Nora Ward                 

SRT involvement in ELAC meetings to facilitate and provide resource information including rights and resources.  Pass out 1-page resource sheet that Santa Rosa together creates.
                  Votes: 5
                  Volunteers:  4   Jamie Padilla, Irma Garcia, Nora Ward, Alex ?, Rene

Hold community workshops (using issues identified by the community to attract participants) to build skills of residents in engaging the government
                  Votes: 0
                  Volunteers: 3   Rev. Curtis Byrd, Alexa Riner, Lucy Hernandez

Focus on safety in regards to safe bikes and pedestrian pathways within our communities
                  Votes:  4
                  Volunteers:  0

Have a bilingual community website/calendar where residents can see events and be involved
                  Votes: 4
                  Volunteers: 1  Pamela Van Halsema

Communicate with city, county, agencies, schools with public  works with residents for empowerment to annex Roseland to city.  Build Roseland creek greenway and the specific plan for Roseland and Roseland Village Shopping Center on Sebastopol Road.
Votes: 3
Volunteers: 0

Increase Roseland resident voice in city and county planning for annexation and the Roseland specific plan
Votes: 3
Volunteers: 0

Government Capacity to partner with and Engage Citizens (49/6)

Develop a process to ensure residents engagement and organized neighborhoods
                  Votes: 5
                  Volunteers: 2  Vince Harper, Larry Haenel                 

Ensure governmental capability to increase the partnership for decision/policy making process
                  Votes:  4
                  Volunteers: 0                 

Make meetings more accessible to everyone with different locations and times.  Inform of future action items and issues
                  Votes: 2
                  Volunteers: 0

Hold community meeting to influence the government’s process of prioritizing ways to make information accessible to public
                  Votes: 3
                  Volunteers: 0

Establish Department of Neighborhoods with funding for education/outreach and community engagement.  Along with that, the city should adopt principles of public participation
                  Votes: 10
                  Volunteers: 2  Shannon Ottens, Tanya Narath

Create citizen advisory board for city budget
                  Votes: 8
                  Volunteers: 1  David Moll

Ask City Council to discuss key community issues at a specific time listed on the agenda
                  Votes: 11
                  Volunteers: 0

District elections
                  Votes: 4
                  Volunteers: 1  Arthur Deicke

Support candidates who support our goals
                  Votes: 2
                  Volunteers:  0

Create a mechanism to foster accountable communication between the community and government
                  Votes:  8
                  Volunteers: 2  Gregory Fearon, Rolland Vander Sluis

Schools (12/2)

Actively support community school model (like Via Esperanza) across city
                  Votes: 6
                  Volunteers: 0

Convene stakeholders to take advantage of opportunity provided by changes to school funding.  Build trust and shared goals around education  (local area plans)
                  Votes: 6

                  Volunteers: 2  Nubia Padilla, Katie Greaves

The Steering Committee met on February 13th, and agreed to take actions to notify all members of the first and second meetings of the above supported actions, to work to further revise the vision statement, and to implement these actions by providing support to committees outlined above in bold.