March 4, 2022

Neighborhood events strive for improved interaction

Courtesy Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center

Courtesy Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center

After months of shutdowns, isolation, and social distancing due to the pandemic, one organization is working to help neighbors reconnect with one another. The Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center will hold events designed to reconnect neighborhoods through resident-led workshops, storytelling, and recognition.

WFYI’s Terri Dee speaks with INRC’s Neighborhood Training Director Sharon Logan about how the organization hopes to highlight the importance of neighborhoods collaborating with and reaching out to one another.

WFYI Reporter, Terri Dee: Sharon, could you acquaint us with the Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center, how long the organization has existed, and how do neighborhoods benefit from the organization's work?

Sharon Logan, Neighborhood Training Director, Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center: INRC has actually been around for almost 30 years. We do work with grassroots leaders who are passionate about community, and really just trying to figure out a way to either organize their neighbors or build inclusion. So, what we do is, we work with those neighbors and leaders to support them on their path with trainings or technical assistance, as well as some small funding opportunities as well.

Dee: There are a series of community engagement events coming up called Neighbor Power Indy and it's a blend of in-person and virtual events. Tell us more about what Neighbor Power Indy entails.

Logan: This is actually our 11th annual Neighbor Power Indy. This year, we are celebrating Indy’s resilient neighbors and neighborhoods. It is an event for really just giving neighbors and grassroots leaders the opportunity to network, to share stories of what they've done over the last year, celebrate wins, and hopefully encourage others to be active in their own neighborhoods and figure out a way to make things happen. We did always in-person in 2020; it was actually the weekend before the shutdown. Then in 2021, we had to go completely virtual and we really took what we've learned over the years and last year and now we are doing a hybrid approach. There will be some awards given out during Neighbor Power Indy: leadership, collaboration and vision are all at the core of the awards being presented.

Dee: How do these attributes contribute to quality neighborhoods?

Logan: Leaders and collaboration and asset-based community development are all our values at the INRC. So, what we're really looking for and what we're able to do this year, we're so excited, is to have a variety of different leaders in Indianapolis. Some are truly grassroots leaders, some are from the city. Some are from small nonprofits and have been able to create videos where they were able to tell their stories of resiliency, especially during the pandemic. That's a lot of what INRC is about; it’s about lifting up neighbors, supporting them, but also encouraging them to celebrate their wins when they can especially when we've had such a hard couple of years.

Dee: Some great, great information. Thank you for your time today. Sharon.

Logan: Thank you so much.

Contact WFYI All Things Considered newscaster and reporter Terri Dee at Follow on Twitter: @terrideeisme.

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