The Neighborhood Asset Inventory is made up of several parts which are listed below. Following this list is a brief narrative providing the philosophy and possible uses for the inventory. You may duplicate and/or modify each inventory to use as your community sees fit. Before making changes, read through all the inventories to be sure you are not recreating what is already there.
THE PHILOSOPHY AND USES OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD ASSET INVENTORY
The Neighborhood Asset Inventory is adapted from an inventory developed in Indianapolis which is based on two sources: John Kretzmann and John McKnight’s Building Communities From the Inside Out and the Neighborhood Reinvestment Training Institute’s Community Assessment Survey. The philosophy which guides this approach to community development is to recognize that neighborhoods not only have needs (often surveyed through “Needs Assessment” surveys), but that they also have assets. Once these assets become recognized, and people in the neighborhood with these assets begin to collaborate with one another, they are significant players in the rebuilding of neighborhoods and communities. The philosophy upon which the survey is based is also found at Xavier University’s “Community Building Institute.” Xavier provides leadership training consistent with this philosophy, and you may wish to contact their Community Affairs Office for further assistance with the survey and this approach to understanding and (re)building your neighborhood.
You can use all or parts of the inventory to get to know various aspects of your neighborhood or to collaborate with other organizations that display similar approaches to neighborhood development. Once the information is collected, it would be good public relations, good networking, and beneficial to membership development if it were printed and distributed by the community council. Some parts of the inventory may also be used by other organizations in your neighborhood. For instance:
COLLECTING THE INFORMATION
The information needed to complete the forms provided here for download can be collected from a variety of places. This form can be adapted easily to an electronic form. We provide some suggestions at the top of each inventory; however, you may identify additional sources and methods of data collection. The Community Building Institute also provides a map tool to aid in asset mapping.
Recruiting your neighbors to participate in your community can be a challenging task! Not everyone will want to participate or to even talk about the organization. (Use the individual and household inventories provided earlier in this section.) Considering how you want to approach each of your neighbors in advance and what you want to discuss once you talk with them might help ease your conversations and enhance the sharing of information you are seeking. Before recruiting, it might be helpful to think about:
While recruiting, take time to consider:
Sharing information, particularly about one’s circumstances, requires the building of trust. Care given to respect and acceptance of your neighbor’s limitations and reasons for not participating are also essential elements in conducting outreach. Someone who is not positioned, ready, or interested in participating now might be in another year. A positive meeting, regardless of the outcome, is an important part of the outreach and recruiting process.
Materials & Supplies Needed for Doorknocking
Expected Outcomes from Doorknocking
Doorknocking: Sample Rap Sheet
Hi. I am Jane Smith from ABC Community Council. I am working with some of your neighbors. We are going around today to talk with people to find out your concerns about the neighborhood and what you would like to see change here. Do you have a moment?
What do you think about living in this neighborhood? Do you have any concerns? Some of your neighbors mentioned to us that they are worried about the gangs that seem to be gathering at the corner. Is this a concern for you? I have heard that the abandoned house across the street is a real problem — with rats and garbage . . . .
Our community council meeting is next Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m. to talk about the community. It is going to be over at the community center and we thought you might be interested. Do you think you might be able to come? Who else in the neighborhood do you think might be interested? Will you ask them to come? (Would you like to go with me to invite them?) Can I mention your name to other neighbors as someone who is interested in this problem?
We are trying to keep track of everyone we talk to and want a way to get back to you and let you know about other meetings we might have concerning this problem. Would you be willing to give me your phone number? What is a good time to reach you?
Here is some information on our group and a number where you can reach me. I hope to see you next Tuesday at 6:30. Thanks!
Every citizen should be a BLOCK WATCHER . . . a concerned, public-spirited citizen who observes criminal activities in his or her neighborhood and reports that information to the Police Department. A BLOCK WATCHER’S objective is just to watch his/her adopted block and, if observing criminal or unusual activities, to report those activities with no further action being necessary.
The security of the City and its citizens depends upon the people themselves. No police department can effectively protect life and property without the support and cooperation of the citizens it serves.
The BLOCK WATCH program establishes a formal network for concerned citizens to report an emergency or criminal activity to the Cincinnati Police Division. The police need your help, your eyes and your ears. Criminals are less likely to operate in areas where the citizens are alert. The goal is to give potential criminals the feeling that everyone in the community is watching them.
THE CITY OF CINCINNATI NEEDS YOUR HELP.
ADOPT YOUR BLOCK.
Here is how it works . . . persons wishing to form a BLOCK WATCH should contact the Crime Prevention Officer of their local district or a member of your respective Community Council. To contact a District Crime Prevention Officer, call:
Training sessions will be scheduled by the Police Division. They will give professional instruction so that each BLOCK WATCH member will know what to look for, how to describe what he or she sees, and, finally, how to report the incident to the police.
Cincinnati Police Division BLOCK WATCHES are given a specific identification number which they will use when calling. The Police Communication Section will process calls in a prompt and efficient manner. BLOCK WATCH members are to call 765-1212 to report suspicious or unusual situations. If an emergency exists, call 911.
Here is an example of a Cincinnati Police Division BLOCK WATCH card:
BLOCK WATCH BLOCK WATCH NUMBER ________________
TELEPHONE NO. ____________________________________________
CINCINNATI POLICE DIVISION EMERGENCY PHONE NUMBER__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
EMERGENCIES ONLY CALL (911)
— OR –765-1212
Only the Crime Prevention Officer of the local District and the supervisor on duty at the Police Communication Section will have a list of BLOCK WATCH members. The patrol officers assigned to your complaint will not know your identity. If more information is needed, the Police Communications Section will call the BLOCK WATCH member back. In this way, a BLOCK WATCH member remains anonymous.
CALL 765-1212 OR 911
(Note: Remember that by calling 911 you are automatically giving your identity.)
Any time you want a Police Officer to respond to your location, call 765-1212 or 911.
USE YOUR BLOCK WATCH NUMBER WHEN REPORTING.
Police Officer in Burglary Assault
Need of Assistance Homicide Purse Snatching Tampering with Auto
Person with a Weapon Holdup Vandalism
Vehicle Accident Gunshots Any unusual, possibly, criminal, situation
In case of fire or explosion, serious injury, or odor of gas, call the Fire Department at 911. (Note: Remember that by calling 911, you are automatically revealing your identity and location.)
This list is not intended to include all emergency cases, but to give you a guide as to when to call 765-1212 or 911.
When calling Police Communications about an emergency, do not hang up until told to do so.
What to do if the Police do not respond in a reasonable amount of time or the dispatcher demands to know your name after advising him of your BLOCK WATCHER number: