Northwoods Pride – An Agenda Looking Forward

Look around at our community and what do you see. Where are the boundaries of what you see as community? What is the geographical distance to the edge of your community? Is the community you recognize a social community, an ecological community, or both included in one?
Community is a group of common interests. With that in mind, the describing the characteristics of our community becomes complicated. History, beliefs, current needs, future interests and potential, available resources, leadership, social framework, environmental conditions etc. factor into the evolution, stability, and potential of communities to be sustainable. Any or all of these are important factors. Looking at your perception of your community, what do you see as its strengths?
There are a lot of people served in just Ely and across the area north of the Laurentian Divide. Within that area exists some the oldest geological and ecological land area within Minnesota. Within this area there are plenty of challenges in determining the common interest or best interests of community without even reaching out to county, state, national or world relationships.
With diverse interests among the “local” populace, what would people describe as the current top five or top ten needs or problems to address for local action? What needs to be sustained and what needs to be developed? This comes down to human potentials that we know exist when certain things exist. You will look around and see a wealth of people resources and community and environmental resources that continue to grow.
There was a discussion today, and it was suggested that identification of attainable needs be established for developing a stable and sustainable community. This requires community members to find their common interests – a difficult challenge.
When people and organizations have accomplished a shared view and goal, the community has created outcomes: community library, local hospital, local schools, higher education, community education, arts and sports facilities and programs, natural resource management, tourism, and public services. Look around and see what gives the larger community of this area vitality.
Every sense of community is based in its view of itself and to what extend it is willing and able to change. There is so much to be proud of and to build on in our community. Summer is a good time to look at all the human resources that believe in the future of this community. Speak up. Give voice. Make known the community’s strengths, weaknesses, needs, resources, and give the appreciation and support for those willing to lead, work with others, communicate, problem-solve, and follow through on “community” supported actions.
Nothing is of more value than community and the creative and hard-working human resources that exist within it..
Bill can be reached at