Understanding the Community

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Guiding Principle # 5

The process of understanding the community enables NORC program planners and community stakeholders to craft an agenda for action.

Gathering sufficient information about the NORC and its residents, and exploring the findings with stakeholders, set the stage for further action. Potential partners will probably have begun to emerge during the process of understanding the community, giving planners a core team with whom to work. This is essential—no one can go it alone if a NORC program is to be relevant to the community.

Together, program planners and community stakeholders can make choices about which issues to address first, and how to approach them. Along with the immediate gains that can be made by addressing problems, the larger goal of changing the environment for seniors as they age should guide decision-making.

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