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Community Partnerships by Mind Map: Community Partnerships
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Community Partnerships

Opportunity to connect

Coordinated planning


Expands reach of programs

Builds and restores fabric of community

Promotes ownership and institutionalization Integrates goals Increases support over the long haul with local resources Evolves structures and delivery mechanisms

Develops spokespersons for the effort

Reduces “Lone Ranger” initiatives

Expands the community’s ability to respond comprehensively to community needs

Employ participatory action research models.

Focus your energy on what you do best, and partner for the rest! Heart of West Michigan United Way

Access to new communities

Access to new revenue sources

(4) Design the Process

How the project starts

Giving potential stakeholders the opportunity to provide input, and using that input to make the project better, builds the support or “buy-in” for your project or program.

Decide who is doing what.

Always knowing next steps

Ownership of project ñ decide upfront:

Find ways to demonstrate results.

who could provide complementary services?

what’s said about the program to the community?

how is it evaluated?


Discuss possible unanticipated outcomes.

Who is the community partner in a college/community sustainable partnership? Define distinct needs of various participants ñ why might they want to participate? Who we approach e.g. school (teachers, etc) vs. parents makes a difference.

Principles of a Good Community Partnership

Agreed upon mission, values, goals, and measurable outcomes

The relationship between partners is characterized by mutual trust, respect, genuineness, and commitment

Strengths, assets, and need for improvement

Balance of power

Clear, open and accessible communication between partners

All partners provide input on roles, norms, and processes

Feedback to, among, and from all stakeholders in the partnership (goal to continuously improve

Making sure the hard questions are asked and all things are agreed upon in a "more than verbal" way.


(1) Think Strategically

Know the community

Use coordinated planning efforts

Know your organization

Plan for Existing Issues

Set Strategic Objectives & Prioritize Partnerships

(2) Analyze and Plan

Using strategic objectives and priority stakeholders (community partners), investigate impact on your operations/activities/goals

What are the needs of your office/organization that matter?

Be aware that a request is often seen an offer or commitment. Learn about the community and their connections within it. Be clear of how they can communicate with you and how the information will be used.

(3) Strengthen Engagement Capacities

Open discussion of past relationships

Jointly define understanding of "partnership"

Do they understand YOU?

Be conscious about who initiated the partnership and why. Do as much work on establishing the partnership as you do on setting up the project.

Spell out the ìresourcesî of each partner ñ what do they bring? Whatís off limits?

Stay aware of the environmental context

Recognize that all parties have particular knowledge and need to be contributors.

Consider skills and capacities needed by both parties to address any gaps through training and education.

(5) Engage and Act

Carry out plan

Action in important to confirming your commitment in the eyes of the community

(6) Review, Report, and Celebrate

Share credit

Show appreciation to residents by recognizing their efforts and say thank you

Review for flexibility so a project can continue and happen again in the best way possible

Identify new learning and possible opportunities, putting it into action.

Develop and evolve over time

Types/Styles of Partnerships

Satellite office


Use of infratructure

Exchange of professional labor

Common Roles in Community Partnerships

Contact Person


Project Coordinator

Stakeholder Participants

Volunteer Recruitment