Category Archives: Neighbors making neighborhoods

Love and bike lanes: how to turn bike lane haters & skeptics into lane lovers

One thing we really love here at ioby are BIKE LANES. Unfortunately, we understand that not everyone feels this way. But, Cupid knows, feelings can change!

That’s why we’re pleased to present the following list of of bike lane benefits, categorized to appeal to skeptics of every stripe. Even if your friend or neighbor thinks they feel meh about bike transportation, they’re sure to feel good about traffic safety, having fun, and saving money! So next time the topic comes up, try talking about bike lanes through one of the lenses below. We bet you’ll get them on board.

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Green infrastructure checklist for local leaders

Interested in learning about what green infrastructure is, why it’s important, and how you can help your neighborhood and your city by starting a green infrastructure project where you live? Start here!

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How can I slow down traffic on my street?

“Historically, streets were not just for traffic,” writes David Engwicht, the irreverent public space thought leader, in his book Street Reclaiming: Creating Livable Streets and Vibrant Communities. “They were the epicenter of community life – a place for socializing, children’s play, drama, education, celebrations, social events, and economic activity. These important functions have been slowly eroded as car traffic has exerted its dominance.”

A glut of vehicular traffic—particularly of the high-speed variety—can quickly make your neighborhood feel less like a safe haven and more like the Autobahn. Luckily, there’s a lot you can do to help calm your community’s streets.

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Winter fundraising: How to get attention & dollars for your project after the holiday rush

Toward the end of each year, many Americans give more than thanks and gifts.

As you’re likely aware, the six-or-so winter weeks between Giving Tuesday (the Tuesday after Thanksgiving) and the start of the New Year is when one third of annual giving takes place. Despite a fairly disastrous news year in 2017, donors remained energized, and gave even more generously this past “giving season” than the one before.

That’s great news, but it does beg the question: what happens once that holiday rush is done? How can people and organizations trying to better their communities still fundraise effectively once giving season is over and it’s just plain old boring winter for the next few months? (Or maybe for you it begs the question: “I started this project, but now I’m wondering if the timing is all wrong. Help!”)

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Nerd alert! Shiny new data about our ioby community and fundraising!

How does ioby staff help project leaders decide which fundraising strategies are best? Well, up to this point, experience, “best practices,” and intuition have been our guide. ioby Leader Success Strategists, ioby’s in-house fundraising coaches, have supported 1,400 ioby Leaders in raising over $4 million in funding. They’ve done this work for years. “We have a pretty good sense for which strategies are helpful to ioby Leaders and which are duds” says Lauren Patti, Leader Success Strategist since 2014, “but we can do even better.”

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How to turn a vacant lot into a community garden: A primer

In December, we posted about ways to find out who owns vacant lots in your neighborhood. One reason we thought ioby readers might be interested in this topic is that so many of you lead the charge to turn vacant lots into active amenities like community gardens. So cool!

The first step in this endeavor is usually to find out who owns the land you’re eyeing, which can take some digging. Below, we outline the next steps many ioby Leaders have told us they’ve taken to turn the empty lot on their block into a flourishing green oasis.

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“Whose land is this?” How to find out who owns vacant lots in your neighborhood

If you walk around any city or town in America, you’ll see them. If you have one in your neighborhood, you’ve certainly wondered how it came to be there. If you’re like many in our ioby community, you imagine all the great things you could do with it.

Why, it’s the ubiquitous vacant lot!

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10 great crowdfunding projects for nonprofit arts organizations

Arts nonprofits help people express themselves and build community to create new ways of looking at the world. In order to do this well, arts groups need to juggle many priorities, from planning programs to spreading awareness on social media to enlisting volunteers – and of course, there’s FUNDRAISING.  At ioby, we think crowdfunding can be an important tool in every nonprofit’s toolkit, and arts nonprofits have been some of our greatest fundraisers.

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4 ways to make crosswalks (better) in your neighborhood

Want to make more crosswalks on the streets in your neighborhood? Or make the ones you have better? Here’s a bit of background on what makes streets so great (and not so great) and how you can make crossing them easier, safer, and more fun where you live.

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How to grow community engagement for your sustainability project

If you’re a devoted sustainability planning or policy leader in the public sector today—particularly within a city or state government office or agency—you’ve probably asked yourself one or more of these questions:

  • How can we be sure we’re responding quickly and effectively to residents’ ideas and needs concerning environmental issues?
  • In our planning processes, how can we include the voices of residents in neighborhoods with long histories of disinvestment?
  • How can we expand and deepen our community engagement with a tight budget and scarce resources?

Well, we have a few ideas, courtesy of some outstanding ioby Leaders, projects, and friends:

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