Take Action: Get involved with your Neighborhood Council
Any resident, business owner, employee, property owner or member of an existing neighborhood group within a Neighborhood Council area can join a Neighborhood Council.”
If you live, work, or own a business in Tacoma, consider joining a neighborhood council and help make a difference in your community. In 1992, the City Council established Tacoma’s eight Neighborhood Councils to advise them on issues of local importance and to seek consensus among residents on specific plans of action. The Neighborhood Councils also undertake a wide range of neighborhood improvements in collaboration with staff from the City of Tacoma and other agencies. Each Neighborhood Council serves as an independent, non-profit citizen organization to promote citizen-based efforts for neighborhood improvement.
A great city is made up of great neighborhoods. Sometimes (often) neighborhoods have problems that need to be addressed or maybe people desire to work towards something better. Either of these efforts require people within their neighborhood to take action and work together to address the issues. To often those issues are defined by people that don’t live in your neighborhood. Unfortunately, those who are socially and economically powerful, such as government officials, interest groups, or community leaders often define these problems – and their solutions. While everyone is indirectly affected by social problems, those who are directly experiencing the problem are often left out of the processes of identifying what the problem really is.
Why should residents be involved in neighborhood issues?
Let’s say that you have a rock in your shoe. No one other than you can know exactly how that rock feels. Others may have read about rocks, seen rocks, or even had a similar experience with a pebble caught in a sandal. However, you are the expert on this particular situation because you are experiencing it.
The same concept applies to social and community problems. People who directly experience a problem have a much different outlook on their needs than does a politician who has only read about the problem in the newspaper or a helping professional who once wrote a college paper on the problem. That is why it is important that you advocate for your own neighborhood and help engage people to tackle the tough issues you care deeply about – because you are the experts. In addition neighborhood councils are given the tools and resources to help you be successful in the change you want to see in your community. Every meeting is an opportunity to discuss topics and concerns with other residents, elected officials, and government agencies that lead to action (i.e. Tacoma City Council, City Manager’s office, Tacoma Police and Fire, Tacoma Public Schools, Metro Parks Tacoma, Tacoma Public Libraries, and others as needed). All you have to do is show up.
We must remember that one determined person can make a significant difference, and that a small group of determined people can change the course of history.
– Sonia Johnson
What do some neighborhood councils do?
- Discuss topics and concerns with other residents, elected officials, and government agencies that lead to action.
- Represent your neighborhood group, share volunteer opportunities, or connect with others to learn how to start a project or group.
- Share Information with people about events and issues important to your neighborhood.
- Help guide and prioritize how the City of Tacoma invests into our neighborhoods. Learn about projects before they happen and provide your input into the process.
- Encourage and support grant seekers, review applications and make recommendations for funding to the City of Tacoma.
- Meet and hear from candidates running for office before local elections. In a neutral nonpartisan environment.
When does your neighborhood council meet?
- Central Neighborhood Council – First Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. Tacoma Nature Center ‐ South 19th and Tyler Street
- Eastside Neighborhood Council (ENACT) – Third Monday of the month at 6:30 p.m. Stewart Height Park Building ‐ 402 East 56th at Railroad Crossing
- New Tacoma Neighborhood Council – Second Wednesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. First United Methodist Church – Fellowship Hall 621 Tacoma Avenue South (enter in the back off of South 7th)
- Northeast Neighborhood Council – Third Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. Sector 1 NE Substation 4731 Norpoint Way NE
- North End Neighborhood Council – First Monday of the month at 6 p.m. University of Puget Sound: Thompson Hall ‐ 15th and Union / Room 193
- South End Neighborhood Council – Third Monday of the month at 7 p.m. Fire Station #8 ‐ 4911 South Alaska Street
- South Tacoma Neighborhood Council – Third Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. S.T.A.R. Center ‐ 3873 South 66th Street
- West End Neighborhood Council – Third Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. Fire Station #16 ‐ 7217 Sixth Avenue
- Community Council of Tacoma – 4th Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. Tacoma Municipal Building – TMBN 16 (Study Session Room)
Attend a Neighborhood Council meeting in your area and help build stronger communities for the next 20 years! Contact Carol Wolfe, Neighborhood Council Coordinator at 591‐5384 or firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about your Neighborhood Council!
Learn more about your specific neighborhood council: