Empowering young residents through skill-building, understanding, and confidence to be community advocates around forthcoming major developments in the Globeville & Elyria Swansea community.
Radian | Placematters is a nonprofit organization that provides design and technical assistance for community-based projects that improve and promote healthy, sustainable communities. As part of its mission to create healthy and sustainable communities in under-served areas, Radian | Placematters applied for and was awarded a grant contract with The Colorado Health Foundation to implement a youth leadership program in Globeville, Elyria-Swansea neighborhoods called Imagine the Possibilities. The program’s purpose is to develop young residents through skill-building, understanding, and confidence to be community advocates around forthcoming major developments in their community.
Radian | Placematters in collaboration with Colorado State University (CSU) developed a project framework based on a core civic engagement curriculum, including subjects such as participation, advocacy, community building, public policy, and local government. Complimentary curriculum and activity modules were added to support this central foundation and develop an understanding of links between civic engagement, the built-environment and health, civic-capacity, and sense of community and place. These modules capitalize on existing programs and actors in the community, including other non-profits, schools, and government agencies, interweaving their strengths and capacity into this project. Flexibility is inherent to the design of the project and these modules were tailored (and partner relationships developed) according to the needs and desires of the participants.
Key partners include the National Western Stock Show, Denver Museum of Nature of Science, City of Denver, Denver Parks and Recreation, PlaceMatters, GrowHaus, Focus Points, GES LiveWell, Denver Water, Denver Arts and Skills Center, and Denver Public Schools. The entire curriculum was reviewed on an on-going basis and updated with the assistance of education experts from CSU.