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Increasing Unity, Trust, and Safety Through Community Projects

Pastor Santiago Valdez, a community pastor and president of a Neighborhood Committee in Chimalhuacán, had a passion to see crime decrease and community safety increase in his neighborhood.

 

Santiago created a WhatsApp group in 2019 with almost 40 actively-participating neighbors. The goal of the group was to discuss how to decrease crime in the community.

 

With Urban Mosaic’s help and guidance, Santiago formed a Neighborhood Committee (N.C.), creating the systems and structure to begin implementing real, tangible change on the ground level. Santiago and the N.C. led neighborhood meetings, awareness workshops and requested involvement of municipal public security officers (such as police officers, civil protection & firefighters, crime prevention dept., etc.). Later on Santiago and his neighbors celebrated a big milestone when a security alarm system was installed on Santiago’s street.

The Neighborhood Committee gathers to install and test out the alarm system.
The alarms have increased unity, trust and safety among neighbors!

“I remember the day the alarm was installed, when the first tests were carried out and the emergency sound was heard from a distance. Several police patrols arrived instantly on both sides of the street,” Sotero said. “Mrs. Claudia, [a local resident] who a few weeks prior had some thieves enter her house, got so excited and was literally jumping, crying and exclaiming: “It works! It works!”

 

This project has increased unity, trust, mutual care, and better relations with the church and neighbors. People know each other better, greet each other when they leave their homes, and see the pastor as a moral authority in their neighborhood, Santiago said.

 

This neighborhood alarm project is a story of hope and transformation!

When strangers get together with a shared vision of bettering their community, they become neighbors and then friends and slowly the social fabric of a community is strengthened, becoming more resilient and leading to deeper human flourishing and SHALOM.

The momentum is growing as more and more Neighborhood Committees form and lead projects in their communities.  UM’s goal is to raise $25,000 by May 31,  enabling UM to keep the momentum going, funding more N.C.s and developing more local leaders. Please also consider financially supporting one of these:

•  LAUNCH PAD:  Neighborhood Committees start with a seed project. $50 covers the material costs for 1 seed project, the first step to creating social cohesion among neighbors.
•  LEG WORK: $100 covers all material costs, labor costs, and community follow up for a seed project.

•  LET’S GO – COMMITTEE TIME: One key to a successful Neighborhood Committee is a committed local leader. $250 covers the costs of training and developing a local leader who will go on to lead a Neighborhood Committees.

•  LONG TERM-COMMUNITY PROJECT:  Community projects (such as pavement or drainage) impact dozens of families, involve MULTIPLE Neighborhood Committees, and develop 3-7 local leaders.

Thanks to your support and commitment, Urban Mosaic has helped local leaders continue projects like this.

 

We invite you to learn more about the work of Neighborhood Committees by joining us on on Wednesday, May 25 at 6 p.m. CT for the “Zoom In: From Strangers to Friends.”

 

If you’re interested, please RSVP by Monday, May 23 here.

-Mary

Hi! Thanks for reading. If you enjoyed this story of hope and transformation, please consider sharing with a friend, donating, or signing up to join the “Zoom In: From Strangers to Friends” on Wednesday, May 25. It really helps us spread hope! 

 

Want to know more about Neighborhood Committees and other projects?

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