Trying to find focus for action, to unite a diverse neighbourhood, and trying to ensure that Observatory becomes more pro-active in its destiny as opposed to reactive – these are some of the challenges in the minds of the 39 people who attended a ‘Visioning’ workshop on 30th May hosted by OCA, OBSiD and OnW.
The conversational buzz energised groups to focus on seven different core areas.
These core areas include The Unique Social Character of Obs, Safety, Cleaner, Smarter, Environmentally Friendly, integrated Social issues and Commercial Enterprises.
At the beginning of the workshop, value statements were created with the intent of making them combine safety, tolerance and the importance of diverse businesses in the broadest sense.
It was important to also include protection of the environment and a strong public infrastructure with a stylish and clean aesthetic.
Discussion then centred on ways in which these values are pursued, for example, by developing relationships with marginalised people and offering suitable services.
The next challenge was to come up with short term (by end of 2017) and long term goals that could realise the vision of Observatory.
This has been dubbed the Observatory Charter.
Actions discussed include planting trees in public spaces, communicating and co-ordinating more effectively with surrounding neighbourhoods around social issues, establishing an energised and pro-active Business Forum and promoting more public ownership of open spaces in Obs.
It also included initiating a Buddy Bus to escort people back home, adding public litter bins to more high traffic areas, extending the distribution of the Welcome to Obs pack to all homeowners and new residents.
A full summary of the workshop and the action points can be found on the OCA/OBSID and ONW websites/Facebook pages. We believe in “People Power” – so if you have more ideas/actions and/or you are willing to volunteer your time to do a small task or tackle a project, please let us know (carolyn@neville. za.net) – we need you to make Observatory thrive.