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Current Partners:

How GCDD supports Real Communities Partners: Typically, each Real Communities partner has a community builder whose role is to build the group, support implementation of the work and create sustainability and accountability. Successful community builders work toward the goals of empowerment – helping people mobilize, obtain resources and develop strategies that promote their interests or causes. A strong community builder seeks to develop leadership in others, as opposed to working on their behalf. With, not for, is a guiding principle for our community builders.

Training & Development: We support the training and development of each local community builder via coaching and mentoring by GCDD staff and Real Communities consultants. We also provide community builders with regular training and learning opportunities to sharpen their skills and add new tools to their organizational toolboxes.

Training Opportunities: We provide Asset Based Community Development (ABCD), popular education, person-centered planning and other training opportunities for members of each local Real Communities partner. We work with local projects to create an evaluation plan that works for their unique project and local environment. Each community defines what success means to them and creates steps to reach those goals. We provide opportunities for community builders and local groups to take part in "learning journeys." These journeys give groups an opportunity to travel to places where innovative community work is happening, so they can learn on the ground and do participatory research on what might work for them. We feel this process helps to avoid "recreating the wheel."

Learning Circle: Real Communities includes an ongoing Learning Circle of local community initiatives and committed community members in Georgia who want to learn together about building more inclusive welcoming communities where people with disabilities have good lives as contributing community members. The Learning Circle seeks to intentionally cultivate innovation and creativity in practical terms by letting go of old ideas, reflecting on our new experiences and experimenting with new action approaches. The Learning Circle is a container to hold the organizing and learning components of Real Communities. It will be an ever evolving process as we learn together and from each other. We seek to be a trusting circle of support where each of us can share our insights and our success, as well as our confusion and challenges. We are "creating the road as we walk it" toward more welcoming communities where people with developmental disabilities are valued members.

Real Communities Videos: GCDD presents "Getting Real in Georgia," a video highlighting GCDD's Real Communities partners and what they are all about. To view the video, Click here. Additionally, GCDD commissioned five other video projects to celebrate its Real Communities Initiative and share the stories of people with and without disabilities working together to achieve common goals that strengthen community life for everyone. To see all the videos, Click here.