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Finding a fresh perspective on your community

Community Swap Reunion

The Community Swap Reunion is essentially a Town Meeting for several communities, typically held six months or more after the first Town Meeting. The focus is on long term changes or plans made as result of the Swap. This is a chance for the visiting Swap Team(s) to see how the community interpreted their suggestions. The reunion may include the teams from two partner communities, or there may be teams from several Community Swap programs. The purpose of the reunion is to allow community leaders to continue to learn from one another, and to explore ideas which could improve the design of the Community Swap program.

To begin planning, the Extension Unit Leader(s) may send the form, "Evaluating Community Swap Outcomes" to each team member (see Appendix for the evaluation questionnaire). When the forms are returned, it will be easy to determine if the reunion should be planned. If no one is interested in a reunion at this point, the information will still be useful when you prepare for the next Community Swap. If a reunion is not attractive to participants, a roundtable discussion might be a simpler way to share information. The roundtable discussion involves fewer people than the reunion but allows each person to share his or her experiences candidly. A reference sheet to use in organizing a roundtable discussion is included in the appendix (Organizing a Roundtable Discussion).

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A program by University of Illinois Extension