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Using Road Maps as a Tool for Participatory Community Engagement
Every time a community engagement process is launched, community members want to know and understand the purpose and outcomes. More importantly is the fact that everyone involved deserves to know this information at the very start.
To answer this question, our organization Communities in Collaboration | Comunidades en Colaboración has developed what we call a Road Map. This simple visual tool quickly illustrates the steps in any process that we are proposing. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a 2-year process, or a 2-month process; any process can be boiled down to three or four major stages.
At the beginning of the process, our Road Maps help people build shared expectations about what the steps, goals, and outcomes will be. The Road Map helps us stay oriented toward those goals and outcomes. And when we come to the end, it reminds us of the major steps we’ve taken. At any point, it truly acts as a map – when we ask “where are we and how did we get here?” the Road Map is there to guide us.