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Topics: Communications and Learning
Following the launch of Oregon Unlimited in March, our contractor Context Partners hit the road to introduce the free online platform/network to Oregonians across the state and to honor those nominated in the I Am Oregon campaign last fall.
Usually TWST meetings happen in rural Oregon towns, but this week there were several in “urban” settings, including Gresham. This area was part of the ancestral homeland, food-gathering village sites of the Chinookan-speaking peoples of which I am descendent: The Watlala, and the neighboring Multnomah, Molalla and Clackamas peoples.
The Two-Way Street Tours are a useful way for MMT to share information about our grant programs, while also learning about community needs and priorities. They were designed as a way to connect to communities we are less familiar with. But the two meetings I attended last week were on my own streets—Eastside Portland, where I grew up and still live.
Since the Great Recession began in 2007, we've been hearing that we are in a 'New Normal' or are experiencing a 'Great Reset.' Indeed, it feels like there is a fundamental shift underway in our culture, even after the economy has shown signs of improvement and recovery. Institutions we have relied on for decades and decades are being disrupted. There is a sense that life will never go back to the way it was and we must blaze trails on a new frontier.
When Meyer Memorial Trust invited Oregonians to give us their advice on how best to spend a million dollars for Oregon, we heard a wide range of ideas that address one big issue: economic development. Given Oregon's higher than average unemployment and food insecurity rates, rising poverty rate and falling median household income, this was not surprising.