15 Dec 2016 NEIGHBORFEST WAS A HUGE SUCCESS!
During September and October of 2016, 9 neighborhoods across San Francisco participated in the Neighborfest Program and organized local block parties. The goal of the Neighborfest block parties was to strengthen connections among neighbors and increase the sense of community. The parties were organized and hosted by a few community members assisted by neighborhood volunteers. This year, each block party was unique, ranging from gatherings of 30 to over 200 people. Each one had lots of different, fun elements like face painting and live music. A Neighborhood Empowerment Network (NEN) team member was present at each block party to run the “Map Your Resilientville” exercise with the residents. The table top exercise included a map with an aerial view of each neighborhood. While running the exercise, the NEN representative gave the following scenario: residents have woken up one morning to a large magnitude earthquake and discover the things they typically rely on, like electricity, gas, and water, are no longer functioning. The residents worked together to identify where in their neighborhood they could find water, energy, open space, shelter, food, and medical resources. The consensus was the exercise brought to their attention necessary changes needed to be made to increase their overall neighborhood resilience.