How to Start a Community Action Project



hey I'm Mike Fantini youth outreach associate here dosomething.org I am in charge of our discipline clubs program and our youth advisory councils so I'm constantly working with young people to try to turn their ideas into action a lot of times it can be difficult to narrow down and focus on what problem you really want to work on survey your community talk to your community figure out what's the thing that that they most want help with you know what's the biggest issue for them because a lot of times no one knows the problem more than the people who are living in and then figure out you know which is the one that you will be most passionate about a lot of times people think okay you know I'm a smart kid I'm passionate I just want to get out there and I just want to start doing but it really is important to sit down and organize your thoughts so the planning process is also really important to help you answer four key questions who what why and how who is the community that you're gonna be helping why is this problem what big deal what two or three powerful statistics that you have explained you know why this problem is a big deal what you know what are you going to do to solve this problem to help reduce the issue at hand and how you know what is your specific plan how are you going to put your solution into place I think it's really important to quantify the issue so you know for example if you want to work on homelessness in your community you know you really have to do your research and know okay how many local homeless people you know are in my town or in my County you know how big the problem is and then sort of goal for yourself so for example if there's 300 homeless people in your county you know my goal is to close half of them in the next three months so you have a very clear idea of how big the problem is and how much change you want to bring about each goal should have a specific metric a metric is you know the the thing that you want to accomplish so for instance to do something our big goal right now is to have too many young people to take action in 2011 and so our metric is number of young people and that metric has a number attached to it two million so each one of your goal should have a number and a metric with each goal you can break it down even even further into action steps so you know so what are the specific steps that you're going to take to help you reach that goal and if you can it's really great to have your action steps each have a metric and a number attached to that as well now you're ready to go the plans already the timeline set everything's good to get its lights camera action so you know now what you want to do is figure out what's everyone's role you know what is everyone's individual job and make sure that everyone is doing their job follow the timeline follow the goals and really make sure that all of your action steps are happening what they need to happen so as you're going along you know you constantly want to record your progress you know you want to see you know how things are coming along are you hitting your deadlines are you accomplishing all of your action steps how close are you getting towards your goal and you really want to evaluate this before the deadline of your goal you know if you want to collect 500 pairs of jeans by February 13 well definitely check your stop you know January 20th January 27 and it's really important to record your progress along the way so that you're not surprised when your self-imposed deadline comes about and be so you can do whatever you can to kind of make adjustments because a lot of things happen on the fly but but as long as you're you know constantly taking a measure and a snapshot of what your impact has been so far you'll really be able to make the adjustments that you need to help you reach your goal




Comments
  1. I just want to thank you for posting this video! It has helped me so much. continued success in all your efforts!

  2. If you are in the middle of a project and are not meeting your goal, should you change your goal or your deadline?

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