Suggested uses for Community Organizers
This website can help you mobilize and educate a community group that may need to respond to an environmental concern. Community members can learn about an issue and read about other communities who are working to improve their situation. You can use these materials to raise awareness, help residents think about root causes of environmental health issues, and plan future action.
Learning about an environmental issue
Choose an environmental issue. Suggest that community members use the various links we’ve assembled to learn background information on the issue. Help them discover the research findings and identify what is still unknown. Guide community members in thinking about the social and political issues surrounding management of the environmental issues in our state.
Learning about other communities
Select one or two of the narratives from Real People – Real Stories. By reading about other communities in North Carolina, your group will realize that they are not alone and that citizens can respond to environmental issues in our state. Help them identify and discuss the health issues. Encourage community members to consider the social implications of locating industrial facilities. Help them discuss the concept of “environmental justice.”
Developing Awareness through a Dialogue for Action
Choose either a skit (reader’s theater) for your community members to read aloud and “perform” at a meeting, or a short film clip to watch. Then use our questions to guide a discussion about the characters, the story, and what it means. Then again – you could use both the skit and the film clip to engage them in lively exploration of the reality of environmental health issues. Both end by guiding participants toward a conversation about future action.
Use our short video documentaries to help community members get “big picture” about environmental justice and the origins of the movement in North Carolina.
Additional links explore the websites of other groups working on environmental health issues, the practice of science and research, advocacy for healthier communities, and legal protection of the environment.