Opportunities to Get Involved in Alexandria
Children, Youth and Families Collaborative Commission
The CYFCC advocates for children and youth, aged prenatal to 21 years, and their families by advising on policies, promoting the city-wide coordination of services and promoting research and best practices.
Youth Master Plan
The Youth Master Plan, an initiative of CYFCC, is a process that will document the needs of the city's youth, prioritize objectives, and devise action strategies.
Alexandria Mentoring Partnership
The Alexandria Mentoring Partnership is a group of coordinated mentoring organizations that work together and share resources for mutual benefit and support in order to increase and enhance the quality of mentoring in Alexandria.
Alexandria City Academy
The Academy is designed to develop civic leadership and build a stronger city through well-informed and engaged residents and business owners. This program will also prepare individuals for public service on a board, commission, or task force or other involvement in the City's governance.
The mission of Volunteer Alexandria is to build a better community by inspiring and mobilizing people to volunteer. Volunteer Alexandria believes an active volunteer community creates an environment in which all people thrive. Volunteer Alexandria is at its best when engaged in collaborative efforts which bring together individuals, neighborhoods, schools, businesses, government, nonprofit, faith-based and other community organizations to achieve a common vision of a better Alexandria.
ALIVE! (ALexandrians InVolved Ecumenically) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization of volunteers from over 40 religious congregations and the community working together to help those in need in Alexandria, Virginia. Founded in 1969, ALIVE! is the largest private safety net for the needy in the city of Alexandria, addressing short-term to long-term needs for those less fortunate in the community.
Alexandria Campaign on Adolescent Pregnancy (ACAP): Keep it 360 Campaign
ACAP works collaboratively for and with youth to achieve lifetime success through active involvement and personal commitment. The Keep It 360 campaign: Imagine a circle of teens, parents and the community. Then imagine a forum for fostering real, open and honest conversations about sex and teen pregnancy. Keep It 360 is the new norm and it starts with teens, parents, and our community talking openly and honestly about sex and teen pregnancy prevention.
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) : Take 25 Campaign
Designed to raise awareness of the issues surrounding missing and exploited children, the Take 25 Campaign encourages parents, guardians, educators, and others to take 25 minutes to talk to children about safety. With a focus on prevention, Take 25 provides free safety resources including safety tips, conversation starters, and event planning guides to help communities host local events.
Looking for more ways to get involved in Alexandria's planning process? Consider these options:
- Serve on a task force or attend a community meeting for a neighborhood planning study or new development projects
- Attend a Planning Commission or City Council hearing
- Attend or serve on a board or commission related to planning issues
- Email PZ Staff for more information on how to become involved in Alexandria Planning or call 703.746.4666.
Resources & Background Information on Civic Engagement
Staff has collected and reviewed information on what other communities around the country are doing to improve their public participation experience. Let us know if you have a resource to share. We'll add it to the list. In addition, you'll find media links regarding What's Next Alexandria.
Alliance for Innovation
- White paper: Connected Communities: Local Governments As a Partner in Citizen Engagement and Community Building
- Consensus Building Institute
- Deliberative Democracy Consortium - Model Public Participation Ordinance
- Everyday Democracy
- Harvard Kennedy School, Saguaro Seminar on Civic Engagement
- Institute for Local Government
- International Association for Public Participation
- National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
- National League of Cities -- City Examples of Civic Engagement
- National League of Cities: Planning for Stronger Local Democracy Toolkit
- Pepperdine School of Public Policy – Davenport Institute for Civic Engagement
- Sustainable Cities Institute
Jurisdictions with notable civic engagement programs or reports:
- Arlington County, Virginia
- Norfolk, Virginia
- Boston – Community Engagement Strategy
- Chicago: Dialogue and Deliberation for Civic Engagement in Chicago: Building a Community of Practice
- Decatur, Georgia
- Denver, Colorado: South Lincoln Housing Redevelopment
Eau Claire, Wisconsin: Clear Vision Eau Claire
- Illinois Department of Transportation, Circle Interchange Stakeholder Involvement Plan (SIP)
- a blueprint for defining methods and tools to educate and engage stakeholders in the decision-making process for this project.
- King County, WA: Countywide Community Forums, Public Engagement Program Evaluation
- New Hampshire: New Hampshire Listens
- New York Regional Planning
- Philadelphia, PA: Budget Planning
- Portland, Oregon Office of Neighborhood Involvement
- Portsmouth, New Hampshire: Portsmouth Listens
- Salem Sustainable Cities Initiative: Civic Engagement Strategies
- San Francisco, California
- Toronto: Review and Reflection on Current Practices and Future Approaches
- Ventura, California Civic Engagement Division
- Utah: Envision Utah
- Vancouver, Canada: Greenest City Initiative
Examples of online engagement platforms
- Action Alexandria – brings together neighbors and local nonprofit organizations to exchange ideas, coordinate efforts, and solve problems in our community.
- Civic Commons – collaborative catalog of civic apps to help cities engage
- Code for America - working to change the way cities work through technology and public service
- Crowdsourcing - obtains ideas by soliciting contributions from a large group of undefined people from the online community
- IdeaScale – online civic engagement platform
- Mindmixer – online civic engagement platform
- Neighborland – online civic engagement platform
- OpenPlans – non-profit focused on open government and transportation
- Open Town Hall – online civic engagement platform
- The Project for Public Spaces -- Digital Placemaking
- UserVoice – online civic engagement platform
Articles about civic engagement
Media links about the What's Next Alexandria initiative
- City Hosts Second 'What's Next, Alexandria?' Dialogue - Old Town Alexandria Patch, January 30, 2013
- Participate: What's Next Alexandria Online Event - January 7, 2013
- 'What's Next, Alexandria?' Launches Citizen Engagement Effort - West End Patch November 16, 2012
- "What's Next Alexandria, The Dialogue Begins," Alexandria News, November 16, 2012
- 'What's Next Alexandria' Dialogue Set for Nov. 15 Old Town Patch November 9, 2012
- 'What's Next Alexandria' Survey Extended Old Town Patch October 18, 2012
- What's Next, Alexandria? (Blog Post) West End Patch October 10, 2012
- City Launches Civic Engagement Initiative - Old Town Alexandria Patch September 25, 2012
- What's Next, Alexandria? - AlexandriaNews.org September 21, 2012
- Letter to the Editor: "What's Next Alexandria Won't Heal City's Divide" Alexandria Times December 7, 2012
- Letter to the Editor: "What's Next Alexandria Dialogue – Did It Succeed?" AlexandriaNews.org, November 28, 2012
- Letter to the Editor: "What's Next?" West End Patch November 20, 2012
- Letter to the Editor: "With the election over, time to get involved" Alexandria Times November 20, 2012
Other links of interest
- ZoningDC.org - Twitter TownHall