Training & Economic

Asset-based community development is a methodology that seeks to uncover and utilize the strengths within communities as a means for sustainable economic development.

The first step in the process of community development is to assess the resources of a community through an asset mapping process to build a capacity inventory by talking to the residents to determine what types of skills and experience are available. An asset map is an inventory of the strengths and gifts of the people who make up a community. Asset mapping reveals the assets of the entire community and highlights the interconnections among them, which in turn reveals how to access those assets. The next step is to support communities, to discover what they care enough about to act. The final step is to determine how citizens can act together to achieve those economic goals.

The program is structured around ten proven interventions to unemployment around the globe. The Initiative is most effective in a village, town, or neighborhood context, and is applicable to both urban and rural settings.

PROSPER INITIATIVE 10 STEP AREA-WIDE ECONOMIC RESPONSE PROGRAM

Step 1: Holistic Neighborhood Economic Development and Renewal Workshops;

Step 2: Establish Business and Employment Forums;

Step 3: Train an initiating group of skilled unemployed volunteers to conduct an asset map of the area;

Step 4: Conduct First Impression Community Exchanges and Business Expansion and Retention surveys;

Step 5: Establish Mutually Beneficial Apprenticeships and training programmers’ that respond to proven gaps in the market and help participants and local economies move themselves up the value chain;

Step 6: Establish a Co-operative development engine that promotes supports and sustains the development of viable Worker’s co-operatives;

Step 7: Establish an Allies Program where job seekers get the opportunity to network with employed people and work collaboratively to develop innovative ways to stimulate the local economy and promote job creation. Develop local Time banks / Gift exchange frameworks and solidarity economies, e.g. ‘Time Dollars’;

Step 8: Use micro-credit, micro-financing to stimulate economic activity

Step 9: Where viable, support the establishment of Community Development Trusts to liberate distressed properties, and repatriate them as community assets;

Step10: Support the development of neighborhood economic and employment generation plans.

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