Communicating FAN

Has a synopsis of FAN been developed to use for membership recruitment purposes?

I was reviewing the vision but thought maybe something concise was available for use on Nextdoor, Facebook, emails etc.


1 Like

That’s a good point, Maria. We should definitely put together a concise statement used for recruitment. Do you have some ideas of what that should look like?

We have the following below that’s been posted in a few places. If anyone can help edit this or create something that’s short and might be better at geting people interested in FAN, we’d love the help.

A new group is starting called Friends of Austin Neighborhoods. Anyone in Austin can join and be a member. It’s free to join and voting will be online for neighborhood and city wide issues. Friends of Austin is a coalition of neighborhood associations and individual members, so anyone can sign up to be a member. Individual members will be able to vote on issues just like people can vote in their local neighborhood associations now, except you’ll be able to vote from your own home at your convenience.

Friends of Austin is reaching out to any existing neighborhood associations that might be interested in joining. Friends of Austin Neighborhoods members are currently going to neighborhood association meetings and making presentations about the group and answering any questions that associations might have.

If you feel that you don’t have a neighborhood association in your neighborhood that represents you, then we’d encourage you to sign up as an individual member on our site. As more and more people sign up within a given neighborhood it’ll help that neighborhood get enough people together to eventually form their own new neighborhood association that has online voting and welcomes everyone into the process. Being involved in neighborhood issues should be easy, free, and convenient so everyone that wants their voice heard can do so. Friends of Austin Neighborhoods will help create groups with those goals in mind. The more people that are involved the more the group can represent the diverse voices in our communities.

Feel free to visit the site below and let us know if you have any questions. If you’d like to start your own new neighborhood association in your neighborhood, please contact us and we can help you get started and walk you through the process.

If you’d like to join, you can do so at the link below.

Follow FAN on social media:

Looking long term I think that our vision and operational style will become the norm. Todays issues will give way to new issues. But how to recruit, maintain the inclusivity, and provide resources for neighborhoods to become community is the real and ongoing challenge. We need a “Neighborhood Survival Manual”. A guide that concisely provides the foundational elements of forming and maintaining a neighborhood organization. Links to resources, techniques for organizing, how to’s on setting up, polling, visioning, and presentation. Someway that we can offer the expertise that this group has without reinventing the wheel at each stop. Community building is a long term and never ending project. I know many of you have been instrumental in helping organizations form but long term we need to be wise about our investments of personal energy. I think creating a "manual’ help in that regard.

1 Like

Pete has put together the first chapter of the Neighborhood Survival Manual that details how to get started.

But I think something that gives advice on how to run a successful NA would be great. There’s a lot we can learn from each other. Let me get it started with an outline of the sections. Feel free to add/change anything.

  1. Starting a new neighborhood association
  2. Communication with your membership
  3. Growing your membership
  4. Voting
  5. How to hold effective meetings
  6. Communicating with city government
  7. Dealing with opposition
  8. Choosing issues to focus on

That’s just what I could think of off the top of my head, but it’s a good place to start.

Of course, you guys are already working on something like that. Nice,
I will look this over tonight. Pete do you have that first chapter available for viewing?
Anything I can do to help let me know.

I’ll email to you here in a minute. It’s really basic, so let me know if you have any suggestions and then we should probably find a way to share it easily on the website somewhere.

After reading Pete’s how to it seems 1,2, and 4 are covered. Lets see if anyone has any more topic headings. Anyone?

@marieacuna As Simon Sinek says, “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it.”

Accordingly, the main pitch is that FAN aims to reclaim the word “neighborhood” so that it no longer refers just to a narrow subset of people who tend to be against everything. Never again should someone say, “let’s see what the neighborhoods think”, as if we don’t all live in neighborhoods.

To achieve this overarching mission, FAN helps neighborhoods with:

  1. Inclusiveness. FAN advocates at the city level for policies that welcome new and diverse residents, and the housing needed to accommodate them, into neighborhoods.
  2. Innovation. FAN members share best practices for employing technology and processes that broaden neighborhood engagement and give voice to previously under-represented voices. As @rickyhennessy, mentioned, FAN also provides a “kit” for starting new neighborhood associations and providing new capabilities to existing neighborhood associations.
  3. Improvement. FAN helps neighborhoods find ways of embracing and shaping inevitable change for the betterment of the neighborhood and the city as a whole.

“We all live in neighborhoods. Join us in reclaiming the word.”

We have a slide deck we use for approaching prospective members. If you’d like to have a look or make use of it yourself, let me know, and I’ll share the Google slides.

1 Like