This Conference brought together people from across Australia who share a personal or professional passion for building citizen driven communities to learn how to–
- discover the power of social capital to help bring about positive economic, social and environmental change within our communities;
- discover the power of local, ‘bottom up’ and asset based approaches to strengthen community;
- discover the innovative ways in which other communities are striving to create that sense of belonging and connection that has been steadily eroded by globalisation and technology;
- discover how to draw on the unique wisdom, passions, skills and interests of residents to activate citizenship in creating healthy communities;
- explore the institutions and structures which both impede and enhance citizen driven efforts;
- explore a range of tools and methodologies that will inspire and empower people to believe, behave and act like citizens in control of their community and their destiny;
- discover like-minded people with whom to network with and create a lasting legacy of peer-to-peer learning.
The Nation’s capital provided the ideal setting for a National Community Engagement Conference. Effective community engagement and active citizenship are the cornerstones for achieving social change. For those of us who believe in the power of community, this was a chance to capitalise on the ultimate political setting. An opportunity to shine a light on the importance of building citizen driven communities for policy makers who create the legislation and political environment that strongly influences the ability of Australian communities to tackle social challenges at the local level.