Creating innovative solutions

Now that you've collected your evidence and identified community building needs you’re ready to develop the most effective responses to them.

In the current funding climate, you and your partners need to be creative when looking for solutions; pooling knowledge, resources and funding.

There are a many ways to respond to community building needs. No two communities are the same and therefore responses need to be tailored to the specific growth area community.

Below are just some of the examples that could be considered. Further case studies and examples are provided in the best practice guide.

Prevention programs. Programs and activities focusing on community well being help arrest the development of issues (for example; playgroups, parenting programs, financial literacy)

Community connection. Facilitating the creation of social networks and support systems (for example; welcome events, street parties, walking groups, arts/cultural activities, community gardens, social media, neighbourhood websites)

Civic involvement. Empowering residents to be involved in decision making and collective action (for example; advocacy, volunteering, residents associations, community engagement)

Social innovation. Facilitating the development of initiatives that create social value (for example; social enterprise, farmers markets, life-long learning opportunities, transport initiatives)

Once the community needs analysis has been completed and the required programs, services and activities have been mapped, implications for the physical spaces that will be needed will become evident.

Community facilities. The spaces from which programs and services are delivered (for example; community centres, kindergartens, men's sheds)

At this stage you will need to answer the following questions for your identified needs:

What are the types of responses required to address each need? (Remember to consider the five types of responses above. Some needs will require a multi-faceted approach)

What are the specific activities / events / programs / services / facilities that will be required?

When do the responses need to be delivered? (You will need to refer to the development timing and sequencing here to ensure that delivery is timely).

What resources are required? (Remember to consider both set-up and ongoing resources, as well as the nature of resources such as capital, staffing and operation costs).

Where will the resources come from?

Which stakeholder is best placed to lead this response?

What are the partnerships that need to be established?

During these processes you will find that some responses might respond to more than one need, so you can avoid duplication.

This is an appropriate time to set the objectives for your evaluation framework (PDF, 553KB) or evaluation framework (Word, 939KB), because you’ve now identified the goals of your community building responses.

The importance of placemaking