The genesis for Action Tanks is a belief that the experience and knowledge of our practitioners and partners is one of the greatest untapped resources in CCDA. Action Tanks are designed to give our experienced members an opportunity to listen to and engage with each other and develop innovative solutions that enhance the flourishing of all of our communities.
Action Tanks are limited to 18 practitioners and partners gathered to discuss, debate, and tackle a specific issue that affects our communities. To participate, practitioners should bring a minimum of five years experience working with the identified issue. Limit one participant per ministry per Action Tank.
Date & Time: Thursday & Friday, Sept. 25-26, 1:30-4:30pm
Location: Edenton Street United Methodist Church
228 W Edenton St, Raleigh, NC 27603
Enter through office doors from parking lot (rear of church)
Walking Directions (15 minute): Take Salisbury north to Edenton Street. Turn left and walk one block to McDowell Street. Turn right and walk 1/2 block to parking lot behind church. Enter through office doors.
Bus Transportation: 2 Buses will leave from the Convention Center (on Cabarrus Street) at 1:10pm. Buses will return to the Convention Center at 4:40pm.
Sign up onsite at the CCDA Info Booth in the Raleigh Convention Center. Online sign up is closed.
Thursday, September 25
CCD & the Life of Higher Education
This Action Tank will gather educators (faculty/staff) to engage in a conversation about the relationship between Christian Community Development (CCD) and higher education.
Action: Develop clear recommendations and applicable ideas to incorporate CCD into the life of higher education institutions.
Best Practices for Starting a Social Enterprise (Business) in an Under-Resourced Community
This Action Tank will gather veteran CCDA members who have started one or more social enterprises (ie. an organization that applies commercial strategies to maximize improvements in human and environmental well-being, rather than maximizing profits for external shareholders) in an under-resourced community. Participants will share best practices learned from both failure and success.
Action: Prepare a Best Practices/FAQ guide for CCDA practitioners who desire to start a social enterprise (business) in their community.
If It Prospers, You Too Will Prosper: Housing and Planning Policies for a Flourishing City
While building and rehabbing housing is a significant part of CCD ministries, these efforts are not keeping pace with the rising cost of housing. Many of our low income neighbors can no longer afford to live in our communities.
Action: Considering how both Joseph and Esther advocated with their governments to save a people from hunger and destruction, this Action Tank will consider policies that prevent displacement—policies that CCDA can support at local, state and national levels.
Is Church Planting the Antithesis of Christian Community Development?
The church, in it’s various expressions, is at the core of Christian Community Development (CCD). The question is not if but how should a local expression of the church come into being? This Action Tank will provide opportunity for experienced church planters and community pastors to wrestle with this question.
Action: Address this very challenging question and begin the process of informing CCD practitioners as to best practices for beginning a local expression of the church that fully integrates the CCD Philosophy.
Race, Privilege, and Ethnic Identity in CCDA
This Action Tank will gather veteran CCDA members to engage in an open, honest conversation around the dynamics of race, privilege, and ethnic identity in Christian Community Development (CCD). Participants will share ways to confront power and leverage privilege for the work of justice.
Action: Develop processes and steps for implementing conversations on race in your local community and in CCDA.
Renewable Energy & Christian Community Development
Renewable energy is a practical tool offering CCD Practitioners a viable way to bring transformation to their communities while improving the conditions of our planet. Trouble is, all we are doing is thinking or talking about renewable energy. (And some of us are not even doing that.) From solar energy to LED lighting, to Aquaponics and sustainable agriculture, the future is ours to shape. Innovation is alive and well.
Action: Develop practical application and uses for renewable energy in under-resourced communities.
The Language of CCD: What, if Anything, Needs to be Changed?
Veteran CCDA members will gather to discuss the language of CCD (i.e. the 8 Key Components). In the ever changing world of community development, is the language we use still applicable and relevant?
Action: Develop a working document with initial recommendations on keeping, tweaking, or changing the language around the 8 Key Components.
The Value & Role of the Arts in Christian Community Development
The arts represent an outlet of human expression, usually influenced by culture, and driven by human creative impulse. The arts are classified as architecture, sculpture, painting, music, poetry, dance, theater/cinema, photography and comics. If you are a CCDA Practitioner experienced in incorporating the arts into Christian Community Development (CCD), this Action Tank is for you.
Action: Define the value and role of the Arts in CCD and identify best practices that will enable CCD churches and NFPs to integrate the arts as an integral part of community transformation.
Friday, September 26
Creating A Missional Investment Fund for Housing
This Action Tank will focus on bringing together experienced practitioners to explore the creation of a $30M investment fund, financed by kingdom-minded private and foundation investors, which would specifically provide low or no interest predevelopment, construction and permanent financing to CCDA housing ministry projects.
Action: Present an action plan to CCDA for the creation of such an investment fund. This will reflect the Biblical theme of “plant gardens and eat what they produce.”
Engaging Mass Incarceration and Recidivism in a New Jim Crow Paradigm
Combatting mass incarceration and recidivism demands a creative mix of personal interventions: services & support for returning citizens & people with felony convictions; investment in children & youth to provide constructive alternatives & direction as well as quality education; and assistance for families of those incarcerated. There is an imperative need for advocacy and organizing rooted in Biblical Justice to address the racialized systems and structures that undergird the War on Drugs and the epidemic known as mass incarceration.
Action: Identify and list 1) Best practices of personal interventions and 2) Suggested approaches to advocate and organize for local and national systemic change.
Evaluating Progress and Success in our K-12 Schools
Our schools and students need critique and evaluation, but how exactly should we evaluate their progress and success? Testing, testing, and more testing? Veteran practitioners with educational experience will tackle the question: How should we evaluate the progress and success of the students and schools in our under-resourced communities?
Action: Identify metrics that predict and evaluate academic progress & success and prepare a document that CCDA can use to advocate for these metrics.
Fostering Communities of Wholeness with People with Disabilities What is wholeness?
Can communities be truly whole if people of all abilities are not included, integrated, celebrated and given freedom to express their unique gifts? How is our society (and in particular the church) preventing people with all sorts of disabilities from contributing fully in ways that are life-giving to all? How do we foster space where people with and without disabilities grow in kinship and belonging together in ways that reflect the Kingdom of God?
Action: Develop a document recommending ways to intentionality bring people with disabilities from the margins to the center of our communities and to positions of leadership.
How Do We Know if We are Making a Difference?
How do we know our Christian Community Development (CCD) efforts are making a difference? What does success look like? This Action Tank will gather veteran CCDA members to discuss possible core competencies that can be used when evaluating CCD ministries.
Action: Initiate the development of an evaluative tool to help assess CCD work in our communities.
Indigenous Leaders: Defining the Phrase and Engaging our Leaders
Within CCDA, we use the phrase indigenous leader in several ways: to describe leaders from the neighborhoods we work in; to describe leaders of color; to describe leaders from under-resourced communities who now live in a different, yet similar neighborhood; and actual indigenous/Native American leaders. If you define yourself as an indigenous leader, this Action Tank is for you.
Action: Clarify and shape a definition(s) of indigenous leaders that will inform CCDA as to how we proactively open space to pursue and learn from these key leaders.
Moving from Relief to Development: Addressing Food Insecurity in our Communities
One of the greatest obstacles to making this change are the policies of food banks in our cities. Veteran CCDA members will gather to address these policies and provide ideas for shifting from relief to development in providing food options in under-resourced communities (i.e. kitchen to pantry to co-op).
Action: Develop a document with specific steps and ideas about creating development food options using the CCD Philosophy.
Town & Country: What does the Future Hold for the Continued Sustainability of CCD Ministries in These Communities?
One of the challenges faced by CCD-ministries in rural areas and small towns is the need to identify resources to provide opportunities for continued sustainability. Most practitioners are aware of and committed to the mission and programmatic side of their respective ministry, what many sometimes struggle with is the operational side. What are “best practices” for operating a sustainable faith-based non-profit? Where and how can faith-based ministries access resources for continued support? Development specialists and/or Program Managers from local foundations with a successful history of support for the nonprofit community will be on hand to help guide rural and small town practitioners through these questions from a funder’s point of view.
Action: Identify and list best practices to help rural, small town and country ministries operate sustainable faith-based NPO’s and understand how to gain funding support.