100 Leaders, 100 Sustainers, 1 Network.
2017 has been a tumultuous year in our nation. Every time we turn on the TV, it seems we’re faced with brokenness of all kinds: natural disasters, mass shootings, poverty and injustice. Sometimes, the tragedy is unavoidable; other times, it reveals the deep divisions that persist in our communities, and how far we still have to go to bridge those divides. And yet as we turn the page on a new year, there is reason for hope.
Durham is one of those communities whose history is filled with both pain and hope. Recently Durham has been “on the rise” with a booming start-up culture and restaurant renaissance. But like many gentrifying urban cities, Durham also suffers from pervasive systemic poverty, rampant social injustice, and a great imbalance of opportunity. In a word, this incredible place we call home is also a case study in inequity. The rising tide simply isn’t lifting all boats.
And while there is much to lament both nationally and locally, there is also much to celebrate. Recent tragedies have revealed brokenness in us as individuals, communities and systems, but that revelation provides an opportunity for transformation. Here at ReCity, we’ve had a front row seat to watching the type of transformation that is possible when a community comes together and unites around a shared sense of purpose.
In just over 12 months, our Network has grown to include 50 community leaders from over 30 nonprofits, churches and mission-driven businesses. We’ve hosted 180 community events, created 400 connections between our partners, and seen 8 sustained collaborations form to serve over 1,000 of our under-served neighbors.
When you bring together a growing collection of social impact organizations—non-profits, faith-based groups, and mission-driven businesses—you soon find that inefficiencies are unmasked, synergies are found, and the impact grows exponentially and in short order. In our first year since inception, ReCity Network has become vital to building a more united Durham that serves as an example to other cities of how to include everyone in the dream.
I’d like to invite you to consider joining us on this journey—still early in our history—to sustain the impact we’re having in our community. Every organization needs sustainers. Whether you’re a church, a non-profit, a small business or a large one, in order to really thrive, you’re going to need a group of committed people investing in your success.
As the New Year approaches, I encourage you to reflect on what you have to offer your community.
Our goal for 2018 is to expand our efforts to serve 100 community leaders. Motivated by this goal, we’re looking for the ReCity #First100—a hundred sustainers who will commit to invest any amount on a recurring basis. Whether its $1 per day or even $1 per week, we need your help to catalyze the unity we’re striving for in our communities.
Our goal is to raise $30,000 by adding the first 30 sustainers by December 31st. I promise you’ll gain more than you give. The need is great, but our resolve is greater. And we are doing this the right way—together.
Will you join us?