On Monday, November 28, 2016, PHAdvocates partnered with Kounkuey Design Initiative to conduct an in-depth Complete Parks Advocacy Workshop in the cities of Colton and Placentia. Nearly 30 community members attended each workshop, most of whom were low-income, monolingual Spanish speakers. The Community Services Departments in Colton and Placentia supported the planning and promoting of the workshops in their respective cities.
The Complete Parks Advocacy Workshops were designed to inform the residents about the importance of advocating for healthy changes in their communities and to get feedback about how they would like to improve their city parks. During the workshops, PHAdvocates provided the residents with food and refreshments, translation services, and child-care services. City representatives also attended the workshop and made opening statements to thank the community for their participation.
Community members helped to:
- Identify routes to parks that need improvement to make walking and biking safer
- Identify key locations where additional park facilities are needed
- Identify parks in each city that residents felt were safe or well-maintained, and identify parks that they felt were unsafe, or not maintained and why
- Discuss ways in which safety and maintenance could be improved for the city’s parks and the methods that residents felt were most important/most appealing.
- Identify parks in each city that residents use
- Find out their current knowledge of what programming and amenities were offered at the parks in their city
- Discuss what programming and amenities residents would like to see added or improved in their parks
- Discuss residents’ preference for providing feedback on the park design, maintenance, and programming
The PHAdvocates project team is working with the Colton and Placentia Community Services Departments to identify opportunities to host additional workshops throughout each city. The goal is to compile the findings from the Complete Parks Workshops and develop policy recommendations to address residents’ concerns. By June 2017, PHAdvocates plans to share these recommendations with the community and begin to train residents on how to advocate for the adoption Complete Parks policies.