Written by Elena Chan, Director of Community Development
At Mission Adelante, we envision a growing multicultural community of disciples making disciples, where people from all places are thriving and using our gifts together to transform our neighborhood and the world for the glory of Jesus Christ. However, while we’re located in a part of Wyandotte County that has a multitude of assets and opportunities, there are also many challenges. We believe that the opportunities and challenges in our community are God-sized, and that meeting them will require partnerships and collaboration. That’s why, when the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas approached Mission Adelante a year ago to solicit our participation in a brand new initiative focused on transforming our neighborhood through strategic improvements and collaboration, we jumped at the chance.
The initiative is known as The Park Drive Neighborhood Project. It was funded by The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). “The Unified Government hopes to “stand up” the neighborhood in five years and, if successful, continue to use this model in communities across Wyandotte County.” (https://www.wycokck.org/SOAR/Park-Drive.aspx) The opportunities identified for the project will require various parties--including local government, businesses, neighborhood stakeholders, and residents--to work together in order to be successful.
Project leaders approached Mission Adelante as well as the other community organizations in our census tract with the aim of learning what unique offerings we were each making available to the residents of our immediate part of the county. Also, they were hoping to capitalize on our existing relationships with residents in order to gain resident involvement in the initiative. Due to Mission Adelante’s centralized location and proximity to residents, we had the privilege of hosting at our facility several community meetings where resident input was gathered.
Most recently, community organizations came together to assist the UG in going door-to-door to invite residents to a neighborhood picnic at City Park on July 15th. The picnic included free food, music, slam poetry, games, and informational materials for residents. Twenty-one Unified Government departments participated, staffing informational booths and speaking with residents about their services. Additionally, nine community partners attended with information on their services and projects in the community.
We’re excited about the synergy that has been generated among the collaborators, and we’re very optimistic about the community transformation that could be realized during the next five years. Praise God for bringing to us this opportunity to work toward the type of community that we envision sharing with people from all places.
- Are you passionate about education and kids? Our Leaders in Training program is always looking for new volunteers. Please contact Megan if you would like more information: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Adelante Arts Community needs one or two volunteers to teach guitar to kids! No need to be an expert. If you enjoy playing a few chords and would like to share that ability with others, fill out an interest form at http://www.missionadelante.org/arts.