Why Associations are Important to Communities
Based on the work of John McKnight
ASSOCIATIONS ARE THE CIVIC SPACE FOR DEMO...
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The importance of associations

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From Minnesota Campus Compact. A one-page handout (PDF) touching on the importance of associations in creating vibrant communities. Based on the work of John McKnight

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The importance of associations

  1. 1. Why Associations are Important to Communities Based on the work of John McKnight ASSOCIATIONS ARE THE CIVIC SPACE FOR DEMOCRACY Associations are a vehicle for democracy where citizens are producers and take and make power in their efforts to improve the quality of their lives. Societies with strong institutions and no associations ASSOCIATIONS ARE A COMMUNITY'S PRINCIPLE WORKFORCE They: • show what people really care about. • are implementers of care. • motivate people to get together. • are a dormant community workforce waiting to be mobilized. • do all kinds of things that are unrelated to their mission (i.e., Adopt-a-Highway).In these societies associations are considered conspiracies. Associations are relatively invisible. They are there, but they must be identified in order to leverage them for community benefit. Associations are voluntary – people aren’t paid in associations. Money is not the mobilizer. The motivation to associate is by personal priority and passion. Associations are magnifiers of gifts and capacities of local people. They are an essential structure for identification, utilization and magnification of gifts, skills and abilities.

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