The Wilmington design team completed their Action Lab on Thursday, February 8. This third and final Raising Places workshop brought the team together to incorporate prototype feedback, visualize their concepts, host a community event and plan pilots of their most promising ideas.

In the twelve weeks leading up to this milestone, design team members spent time creating, sharing and iterating their visual prototypes. This meant showing pictures of their concepts to both people who might benefit from the ideas and those who might be able to help implement them. 

Design team member Ely Fournier takes notes during a prototype feedback session with youth (left), Wilmington adults share their critiques and ideas during another design team-hosted feedback session (right).

At the lab, the design team reviewed participant feedback and made some tough decisions about which concepts to keep, cut or combine. Then, they quickly got to work on communicating each idea, including a name, photo, description, features and a roadmap for implementation. All this information was quickly translated into Spanish, then taped onto large concept posters, which were displayed at the community event.

Ely tapes an image to his group's concept poster for shared dinners between Wilmington youth and adults (left), a completed concept poster before the Wilmington community event (right).

The concepts from this design team include the following:

Scholarship and Creative Arts Internship Program

A scholarship and/or creative internship program that provides support for educational costs for higher education or an internship stipend for arts supplies.

Youth Renovation Program

A community building opportunity that teaches youth construction skills and renovates/improves historic buildings and other sites in Wilmington.

Kairos: Shared Dinners with Youth & Adults

A series of shared meals and facilitated activities that brings together youth and adults in Wilmington to spend time together.

Arts Campus

A multi-use building and mobile unit that provides a variety of creative programming and resources for youth in Wilmington.

Co-Op Facilitator Program

A co-op incubator that helps to support and launch co-ops, which are business owned and grown by residents.

Mobile Learning Space

A vehicle equipped with educational resources that travels around Wilmington to provide residents with services and resources with: resume writing, financial literacy, life skills, voter registration and more.

Local Retail Space

A retail model both in store and website that sells local goods created by Wilmington residents.

Lending Circle Convener Program

A digital job search hub that connects youth with part-time and immediate job opportunities that fit their skills and talents.

Green Jobs Pitch Competition

A pitch competition for “green” venture ideas that provides the winner seed funding.

Youth Beautification Venture

A youth-led business that sells plants and planters that are repurposed from discarded objects in Wilmington.

Network of Green Spaces

A network of green spaces that repurposes vacant lots throughout Wilmington into single and multi-use spaces for community use.

Some of these concepts are novel ideas, while others are tried-and-true solutions. Either way, the team knows that these ideas are right for their community, right now. Each concept came out of research with residents and stakeholders, was co-created through community brainstorming, and has been grown and shaped by many rounds of feedback and iteration.

Wilmington conveners Liza Rivera and Gaby Bradley from SBCC Thrive LA present the design team's work to over 100 residents (left), Liza shares her group's concept for a network of green spaces with Wilmington residents (right).

The community event in Wilmington was a huge success. Over 100 people of all ages attended the event held at the Banning’s Landing Community and Cultural Center. First, the convening team presented them with an overview of the Raising Places process in Spanish; live translation via headsets was provided for the handful of English-only speakers in the room. Then, for the following hour and a half, design team members presented their concept posters to individuals and small groups. Together, they discussed responses to their open questions, such as, “How can we make this concept even more beneficial for kids,” and, “If this concept were real, what are the potential negative outcomes?” With all this feedback came a lot of engagement and momentum – many individuals signed up to join the teams working on each concept!

The final component of the lab was pilot planning, where the design team laid out the nuts and bolts of running a pilot  – short-term test – of each concept over the next 2-3 months. They defined who needs to do what and by when, what success will look like, and how to measure it. They will share pilot results at the Raising Places National Convening in April!

If you’d like to get involved with the Wilmington team as they pilot these promising ideas, please contact the team’s convener. We look forward to seeing this community continue to transform!