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What is Asset-Based Community Development?

What is Asset-Based Community Development?

How you view the neighborhood that you live or work in is going to largely influence the way that you act. A neighborhood is often seen from the perspective of its largest problems. “That is a dangerous neighborhood,” “That neighborhood looks trashy,” “There is a lot of poverty in that community.” How many times have you heard one or more of these as the first description of a neighborhood?

We all know about the negative things that are a part of our community, but, on the other side of every deficit is an asset begging for some attention. Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) is focused on identifying the positive, useful, or valuable things, people, or qualities in a community and celebrating what is an asset within that area.

The goal is not to tell you to “fix” neighborhood problems, but to demonstrate how to recognize the assets, and empower communities so that community members can build or rebuild their community and neighborhoods for themselves.

Register for CDFW’s Urban Design Talk: "What's GOOD in your Neighborhood", where we will dive deeper into this topic. Learn more at


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