Franklin Tomorrow has officially launched its new initiative Civic Index and Community Conversations. This initiative is designed to bring Franklin community members together to have a conversation and discuss what Civic Capital means in Franklin. Civic Capital is the formal and informal relationships, networks and capacities communities use to make decisions and solve problems. Franklin Tomorrow is hosting more than 20 events both in-person and virtual around Franklin, which will be open to the public and you are invited to participate! The events will take place from April 19 – May 4. The survey will be available from April 19 – May 12.
Options to Participate
If you are interested in participating in an in-person event, those will take place from April 19 – April 30. Franklin Tomorrow has planned more than 20 events in and around Franklin and many different times throughout the end of April.
If you are interested in participating in a virtual Civic Index conversation, we have 4 virtual events scheduled from April 20 – May 4. These events will take place via Zoom.
If you cannot participate in a Franklin Tomorrow planned Civic Index Conversation but want to host a Civic Index Conversation independently, please let us know. Franklin Tomorrow hopes to get as many Franklinites as possible to participate. Please email Carly Jewell at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to host an event independently and to get more information.
While we hope that you will be able to attend an in-person or virtual Civic Index Conversation, we still would love to hear from you. The full Civic Index Survey is open to the public. The survey link is available here.
This survey will cover the 7 Components of Civic Capital and will ask questions regarding those topics. More information on the Civic Index and the 7 Components of Civic Capital are available here.
The Civic Index
The first edition of the Civic Index was created by the National Civic League in 1986 and since then, the Civic Index has been used as a tool by cities and agencies across the country for measuring a community’s civic capital. Communities have used the Civic Index to identify gaps or areas in need of further attention, soliciting community input to create a baseline measure of their civic capital and monitor progress over time as they work to enhance their internal capacity.
Civic capital is the formal and informal relationships, networks and capacities communities use to make decisions and solve problems. It has seven components and with the Civic Index, Franklin Tomorrow will use a measurement tool to determine whether the seven components exist in Franklin and to what degree — not at all, remains a challenge, is a moderate strength, or whether it is a real strength in our community.
The Seven Components of Civic Capital
- Engaged Residents
- Inclusive Community Leadership
- Collaborative Institutions
- Embracing Diversity and Equity
- Authentic Communication
- Culture of Engagement
- Shared Vision and Values
Franklin Tomorrow plans to initiate the Civic Index by asking community members and organizations to participate either in the Civic Index Conversations, being held during the month of April, or take the Civic Index self-assessment.
April 12 FrankTalks: Examining Civic Capital
Later this year:
The All-America Conversations
After 2020’s divisive election cycle, there’s never been a more important time for communities across America to stand up for the values that make cities and towns strong: civility, humanity, trust, compassion, innovation and inclusion.
The National Civic League challenges communities that have achieved All-America City status to hold “All-America Conversations” that will identify the small, specific actions that remind people how we CAN work together across dividing lines and help our communities reflect the best of what America can be. These conversations are aimed at bringing together residents in small, conversational settings to exchange ideas about their communities.
The conversations are meant to address three main questions: 1) how can our community reflect the best of what we see in America, 2) what are the divisions in our community and how do they impact our ability to live in the kind of community we want, and 3) how can we bridge these divisions?
Franklin Tomorrow intends to undertake the “All-America Conversations” in Fall 2021, patterning the process after its successful On The Table initiative, but hopefully adding a community celebration component to the overall process.
Franklin is a 2020 All-America City!
On August 19, 2020, the City of Franklin was named as one of 10 All-America City by the National Civic League through a partnership with Franklin Tomorrow.
The All-America City Award recognizes communities that leverage civic engagement, collaboration, inclusiveness and innovation to successfully address local issues. The All-America City Award shines a spotlight on the best in local innovation, civic engagement and cross-sector collaboration.
The 2020 All-America City theme was “Enhancing health and well-being through civic engagement” and was focused on celebrating examples of citizen-driven civic engagement practices that advance health and well-being in local communities. Once Franklin achieved this award, we wanted to do more to enhance our community, which is when we decided to focus on participating the National Civic League’s Civic Index and All-America Conversations in 2021.
During its 20-year history, Franklin Tomorrow has conducted research through surveys and other initiatives to determine the views of residents and other community stakeholders in its role as a community visioning and engagement nonprofit. Through use of the Civic Index self-assessment tool, Franklin Tomorrow will be able to create a baseline measure of the seven components of civic capital by citizens and stakeholders and use this to enhance its work and collaboration in the community.