Community Engagement Plan Summary
This Community Engagement Plan (CEP) builds on the significant citizen and community participation that occurred during the Transform Fresno project application process and in the ongoing work of City of Fresno staff and the Outreach and Oversight Committee. Further, this CEP is guided by the Strategic Growth Council requirements, as part of the Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) Implementation Grant, for preparation of an engagement plan to ensure that residents, workers, business owners, and other property owners and stakeholders continue to be engaged during implementation of the Transform Fresno efforts.
This CEP establishes a framework to maintain consistent contact with the community, coordinate communications on opportunities for community members to guide project implementation (such as contributing to decisions on the design of projects), and activities to program and activate investments (through attendance at events, being a community garden member, etc.). It is informed by a Sampling Plan that highlights demographic and economic characteristics of hard-to-reach population segments in the Project Area and is based on the outcomes of:
- Thirty stakeholder surveys evaluating the CEP Framework and identifying preferences for frequency of communication and methods of community engagement;
- One-on-one conversations with the twelve Project Partners;
- Five pop-up workshops with participation by 120 community members and
- stakeholders at high-traffic locations throughout the Project Area;
- A 30-day period for public review and written comments;
- Meetings with the Transform Fresno Outreach & Oversight Committee; and,
- Other comments and feedback received from City of Fresno staff and community stakeholders through other means, such as emails and comment letters
Key issues that emerged from this engagement process include: urgency to begin implementation activities to meet the needs of longtime residents and businesses; a strong desire for displacement avoidance safeguards and connections to workforce development opportunities; and concern for hard-to-reach populations, such as the elderly, those who are linguistically isolated or may have a distrust of local government, being considered and prioritized in development strategies for targeted outreach.
As a result, this Community Engagement Plan is designed to be rigorous and flexible— leveraging existing relationships with Project Partners, while creating space for formal inclusion of new Community Partners and the next generation of leaders across the three neighborhoods and diversity of stakeholders and interests in Transform Fresno.
Key elements include: Centralization of communications and community engagement information on a redesigned project website; Funding local organizations for direct outreach to build the civic capacity infrastructure within the Project Area; Developing the next generation of leaders through a Youth Leadership Development Program that includes activities related to communication, governance, arts and culture, and participatory budgeting; and Collaboration with the Evaluation Team to ensure the application of the transparency and accountability measures sought by residents and key stakeholders.