OFFICE OF NEIGHBORHOOD EMPOWERMENT (ONE)
STRATEGIC PLAN
"BUILDING A UNITED DEKALB"

 

Background

DeKalb County is home to 300+ neighborhood and civic organizations.  These organizations represent the County’s diverse neighborhoods and communities.

ONE’s goal is to engage these organizations for the purpose of making them a viable, organized, engaged, and active voice in their community and county government.

ONE is also the vehicle through which the CEO and Board of Commissioners will use to promote community engagement, facilitate neighborhood capacity-building and increase the flow of information to citizens about County departments and programs.

PURPOSE OF THE PLAN:

ONE Strategic Plan describes the goals, objectives, key messages, strategies and methodology to be used to engage the citizens of DeKalb County. This plan will guide the direction of this newly formed office.

MISSION

The mission of ONE is to preserve and enhance neighborhoods, empower people to make positive contributions, and bring government closer to citizens.

PRINCIPLES

The primary principles of ONE are to: listen and gain understanding and awareness; communicate and collaborate to achieve best results; be honest, open, and transparent; honor the unique cultures of DeKalb communities; and to provide excellent, responsive service.

GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

Goal 1: The Creation of a more Responsive and People-Centered Government

Objective A: Engage Key Stakeholders

  • Meet with key staff members in all service delivery departments: Public Works, Public Safety, Watershed, Parks & Recreation, Community & Workforce Development, Cooperative Ext. to introduce ONE.
  • Convene annual neighborhood summits that bring together neighborhood organizations, civic partners, business leaders, key stakeholders, county department leadership, county commissioners and the CEO .
  • Create a comprehensive Email list for neighborhood associations for use in disseminating public input requests and general informatio
  • Establish “marketing email” technology to disseminate information related to public input meetings
  • Develop and maintain comprehensive database for neighborhood associations, faith community and other civic groups
  • Organize county -wide annual budget hearings for CEO & BOC
  • Conduct annual series of LISTENING SESSIONS with the CEO and BOC across the county on topical county government/neighborhood issues

Objective B: Increase neighborhood awareness of county services and ensure that information is readily available to neighborhoods

  • Display brochures, newsletters and flyers in all county libraries and recreation centers that will provide information on DeKalb County services.
  • Create and maintain a ONE web portal and social networking sites to facilitate two-way communication with neighborhood associations related to public hearings and topical county issues, calendar of events and registration form.
  • Work with Public Safety to activate neighborhood ROBO calling using Reverse 911 System
  • Create ONE Resource Center
  • Work with the Infrastructure department to develop 12 month educational curriculum for the proposed ONE DeKalb Resource Center @ NorthLake
  • Organize and implement annual public education activities for National County Government Month
  • Realign staff resources (Cooperative Extensive Services, ICP/Neighborhood Watch, Code Enforcement, Keep DeKalb Beautiful, Human Development and 311)

Goal 2: Better Organized Neighborhoods and Communities

OBJECTIVE A: Review and Organize Neighborhoods into distinguishable groups for Piloting ONE

  • Host informational meeting for neighborhoods participating in NSP program
  • Work with NSP neighborhoods to develop informal neighborhood plans (identify and prioritize local needs)
  • Compile a comprehensive Neighborhood Association Best Practices Handbook and post on website

Objective B: Launch Capacity Building Training

  • Meet with Emory University, Agnes Scott College and Georgia State University and other universities to recruit student interns and faculty support
  • Conduct at least four community capacity building training sessions annually
  • Increase neighborhood watch groups by ten annually
  • Recruit and train fifty volunteers in meeting facilitation, technology support and neighborhood training

Goal 3: Better Informed and Engaged Citizens that Enhance the Quality of Personal and Community Life

Objective A: Increase citizen participation in county required citizen input meetings by 25%

  • Host a series of neighborhood informational meetings to review the role of Community Councils and to meet Community Council representatives
  • Implement electronic email (constant contact) to neighborhoods informing them of ongoing activities (Neighborhood meetings, clean-up campaigns, etc.)
  • Design informational flyers and post in resource areas (library and recreational centers); promote on DCTV and other local media outlets.

Objective B: Expand Citizen Participation in Neighborhood Improvement Activities

Work with Infrastructure Outreach Group to implement incentive based awards for neighborhoods with the most improved community involvement

Create a ONE network of community organizations

Objective C: Create a Process for Citizens to provide Feedback and Communicate Neighborhood needs and Issues

Phase One (Organization) - Tasks can be initiated or completed within a two year timeframe depending on the availability of resources.

  • Create a needs/general feedback comment form and place on-line
  • Design and conduct community surveys to solicit feedback form citizens on topical county/neighborhood issues