Over the past thirty-five years, a small but dedicated cadre of community leaders have laid a solid foundation, but their efforts have not kept pace with the growing challenges for a City that has the highest proportion of seniors and adults with disabilities of any urban area in California.
Far too many individuals end up in nursing homes or other institutions because community-based alternatives don’t exist. Increasingly San Francisco is viewed as a generous, but not very progressive, city as thousands of its residents are unnecessarily institutionalized both in and out of county.
In many ways, this campaign is really about giving seniors and adults with disabilities the right to decide where and how they will live their lives as they age and assuring that those institutions are more integrated and less isolated from their local community.
More than that, it is about making San Francisco a better place for us all. It is time to eliminate the barriers caused by disability, age, language, discrimination, and other causes. It is time for us to take what we have learned and sow the seeds of hope, celebrating and having a bit of fun along the way (because, after all, isn’t that how a sense of community grows?)
“The Community Living Campaign strengthens and mobilizes individuals and organizations to assure every person’s right to live in community. Our strategy is to leverage the power of relationships to improve services and support.”
Community Living Campaign fosters the power and potential of friendship to transform lives and strengthen communities. Helping individuals have a good life means
- Achieving Basic Financial Security
- Ending Isolation and Loneliness
- Living In a Home That Enhances Dignity
- Contributing to Others and the Community
- Having Real Choices and Making One’s Own Decisions
- Participating in Communities that Celebrate Diversity
- Building Communities that Value Fairness, Equality and Justice
Our Statement of Community
“Community:” a group of people, sharing common interests and experiences, who affirm, support and challenge each other to act powerfully, both individually and collectively, to defend and advance their values and interests.
The means by which they typically do this is by working together and by:
- celebrating their individual and collective gifts, contributions and talents;
- reflecting on the meaning of the values, traditions or bonds that bring them together;
- education to deepen their understanding of the context and history of which their community is a part;
- training to improve their individual and collective confidence and competence;
- resolving conflicts in ways that strengthen relationships and engender respect;
- action in the world to realize their values and interests. The methods of action are self-help, mutual aid, and institutional change.
Building community is a process that requires patience, creativity and the ability to truly listen.