Op-Ed: Community Dinners Again On The Table

This op-ed was originally posted in the Lexington Herald Leader on March 10, 2018. 

Last year, thousands of people gathered in small groups all over Fayette County to connect and discuss issues that are important to our community.

With nearly 12,000 participants representing every zip code in Fayette County, the inaugural “On The Table” initiative spearheaded by Blue Grass Community Foundation surpassed all expectations and showcased the exceptional level of citizen engagement in our community.

On The Table provided us with a forum to connect and discuss the issues that matter most to us. Real change often begins with a conversation. Last year’s conversations directly informed the update to Lexington’s Comprehensive Plan, which provides the blueprint for how our city will grow over the next decade and beyond. Your voice truly does matter, but you have to participate to ensure your voice is heard.

Thanks to Blue Grass Community Foundation, we will have the opportunity to come together again to share, listen and learn.

On The Table 2018 will be held Wednesday, March 28. Building on last year’s initiative, On The Table 2018 will focus on civic engagement; taking the great ideas generated from our conversations and creating real solutions to better our community and quality of life.

In our work at Fayette Alliance, we have the privilege of witnessing the deep commitment so many people have for our community. As On The Table 2017 demonstrated, people are passionate about Fayette County and preserving all the unique features that make it such a great place to live, work and play.

We must ensure that we grow in a sustainable and equitable way that works for all our citizens and preserves what makes us special. We must reach out and bring others into the conversation and provide various ways for people to make their voices heard.

Like so many others, Fayette Alliance participated in On The Table last year. It was such a positive and powerful experience, we were thrilled Blue Grass Community Foundation decided to organize the event again this year and are very proud to be a co-sponsor.

Because we believe it is critical that everyone has a seat at the table, our support is being used to fund efforts to reach diverse demographics and create an inclusionary process.

The act of people gathering to talk about what each of us can do to make our community safer, stronger, more equitable, compassionate and vibrant has never been more important.

By coming together, our voices are amplified, new relationships and collaborations are fostered and actionable solutions are created. We hope you will share your voice by hosting or joining a table — because your voice matters.

To view the piece as originally published, click here