Over 100 concerned citizens took to the auditorium of Shaw Middle School in Kingsessing last night for a Kick-Off Event with PhillyRising, a Collaborative within the Office of the Managing Director.
Kingsessing will be PhillyRising’s newest community.
At the kick-off event, PhillyRising’s Adé Fuqua introduced the initiative, explaining that it hinged on input from community members and creating sustainable changes.
Adé passed the mic off to Managing Director/Deputy Mayor Richard Negrin to introduce the initiative and speak about its collaborative nature.
“We know that nobody knows your community like you do. That’s the key. That’s why, in the first few months, all we do is listen.” Negrin told the crowd. “You guys remember a time when this neighborhood was different. That’s why we need you to get better.”
Negrin spoke about the program’s sustainability as well. “This is about smaller, incremental, practical, thoughtful results that don’t stop; we don’t leave.”
After Negrin spoke, PhillyRising Director John Farrell spoke about the Collaborative as well. “This is about community capacity; this is about community leadership and a phenomenal team from the City here to support that.”
PhillyRising’s Bennie Ruth then led a discussion with community members. The microphone was passed around the auditorium—struggles, worries, and ideas were shared—and the PhillyRising team recorded it all, as per the first step of the Collaborative’s process. After months of discussions with member of the community, the PhillyRising team will construct an action plan and begin to make changes in the Kingsessing area.
“Whenever you see a launch with the kind of engagement and participation that we saw in Kingsessing, it speaks to the kind of success the community is committed to.” Negrin said after the event. ” I left the kick-off feeling incredibly energized about Kingsessing’s future.”
PhillyRising targets neighborhoods throughout Philadelphia that are plagued by chronic crime and quality of life concerns, and establishes partnerships with community members to address these issues. The PhillyRising Team coordinates the actions of City agencies to help neighbors realize their vision for their community through sustainable, responsive, and cost-effective solutions.
To learn more about the PhillyRising Collaborative and ways to get involved, please visit:
“Together, residents and the City government can keep Philly rising!”