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“Basically, I help out in the areas of community development.” That’s how Community Development Social Worker (CDSW), Lise Robinson, summaries her job.
The CDSW is a City of Edmonton position that works with residents, schools, not-for-profit organizations, faith groups, and businesses on community development initiatives.
Robinson has been working in the RCP neighbourhoods as well as Queen Mary Park, Central McDougall, McCauley, Boyle Street, and Prince Rupert since 2016.
That’s a lot of ground to cover. “I did a lot of door knocking and meetings when I first came to this area,” says Robinson. She still has to alternate and juggle to make it to all of the community meetings and events.
Just recently, she helped McCauley with their Spring Fiesta and worked with organizations on a YEG Family Connect event. She helps organize a monthly intercultural family night, various dialogues, cooking programs, and garden-related activities like Seeds of Hope with Syrian refugees. Robinson also chairs the North Central Interagency Network.
When asked what excites her most about her work, Robinson replies, “It’s really the relationships I build with all the various communities. I love diversity. I’m learning so much about all the different cultures out there. And working on projects from concept to fruition.”
She adds, “One of my proudest moments was working with youth on the Global Fusion Celebration. Helping them to empower themselves to become leaders in community and to execute such a big ordeal. The team was amazing, and we had 500 youth and community come out.”
For those who wish to contribute to their community, Robinson has some advice. “Have an open mind. Be available to volunteer. To listen. To create the community of your dreams.” She adds, “Just like one type of flower doesn’t make a very interesting flower garden, it takes many voices to create a beautiful community.”
After 30 years as a social worker and 17 years with the City, Robinson is both knowledgeable and well-connected.
“Please let me know if there is anything I can assist with.”
A CDSW can help you find:
Community resources & networks
Recreation & arts programs
Organizations & maps
Crime & safety resources
A CDSW can help your community group:
Build a stronger & safer community
Plan & deliver programs
Understand community issues & take action
Build networks & capacity
Get residents involved
Access expertise & planning information
Learn about community organizing
Connect with resources & networks
Source: City of Edmonton website.
PROGRAMS FOR FAMILIES AND YOUTH
Featured Image: Lise Robinson is the Community Development Social Worker and is ready to help where needed. | Lise Robinson