Understanding the Community

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Guiding Principle # 3

Involving a variety of stakeholders in the process of understanding the community forges relationships that sustain a NORC program.

In the earliest stages, a NORC program seeks the broadest possible engagement of stakeholders in the community so that they will remain supportive as the program evolves. Stakeholders in the community can enrich the collective understanding of the community in their roles as:

  • Assistants in research, helping to gather needed data.
  • Key informants, survey respondents, and focus group participants.
  • Interpreters of information.

Hearing their voices early in the process also sets the stage for deepening their involvement over time—possibly as partners, members of an advisory board, volunteers, advocates, donors, and/or champions.

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