Welcome to Civic Life Updates
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Tuesday, February 12, 2019
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Office of Community & Civic Life (formerly: Office of Neighborhood Involvement)

Meet Team Civic Life

Today we introduce Sabrina Wilson. Sabrina is the project manager for Civic Life’s Code Change Project. She joined the team in August 2018 and is responsible for managing the many moving parts of this critical project.

Read a few words below from Sabrina about the 2019 Black History Month theme "Black Migration"

Sabrina Wilson standing in front of a wall with the word "vote" painted on it.

Many people in America begin their ancestry timeline from a single country. Mine starts from another continent because that piece of my history was erased.

I only know as far back as what my grandparents know of their parents; one side from the Bahamas and the other from South Carolina. This year’s Black History Month theme is centered on Black Migration. This speaks true to my family’s history – my great grandmother moving from the Caribbean to Miami, Florida, my maternal grandparents from the South out West to California, my father from the South to California, and now me from California to Portland, Oregon.

The migration of black people has vastly diversified the country at-large, but it is important to acknowledge the “new social realities” we enter into generation after generation, as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History references.

On working with CAAN

In my work with the City African American Network (CAAN); an employee affinity group of Diverse and Empowered Employees of Portland, we work together as people first that share lived experiences and a passion for advocacy work.

The City bureaus and programs we belong to is our role in the larger goal of serving the city of Portland. Each of us brings varied perspectives because of our unique experiences, but we do not come to CAAN as representatives of our respective bureaus. Instead, we bring knowledge and resources we have from our roles – in the City and the community to create and support spaces for connection and empowerment.

A Survey of Civic Life

Thank you to everyone who has taken the survey! The survey is available in English, Russian, Somali, Spanish, VietnameseGet started here

The closing date for the survey is February 22, 2019.

Next, we hope to see you at the community conversations!
Please note anyone can attend any of these sessions and request language interpretation, childcare, other accommodation if needed.

Read additional details here>>

Constructing Civic Dialgoues

4 people sitting in chairs. The group is talking. One woman has her hand raised and is smiling.
Photo by Fred Joe courtesy of Oregon Humanities

Are you exhausted of poorly run meetings? Are you unsure of how to get a positive conversation going with your group? Do you feel stuck when hard topics come up in a dialogue?
Skilled facilitation helps create the space for generative community conversations, productive business meetings, and vibrant dialogue. Everyone can be a facilitator with training and practice. You are invited to grow your skills through this two-day training on facilitating conversations.
Over the next few months, Civic Life is offering multiple facilitation trainings at no cost to the community through the Constructing Civic Dialogue program.

See the full list of all available trainings and dialogues here>>

FY 2018-19 Accommodations Fund

Accommodations Fund is now accessible to Civic Life programs and partner agencies.

The funds are available for accommodations in the fiscal year 2018-2019 (July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019). All requests must be made by April 30th, 2019 and all invoices must be submitted by May 31st, 2019. Detailed information here available here: Accommodations Fund
For questions, please contact Mary Hartshorn at 503-823-6033 or email: 
Note: Submitting a request does not guarantee funding.

Click here for more information

Upcoming Events

Black Family Festival City Resource + Fair flyer

Black Family Festival City Resource + Fair


From Sabrina Wilson: One of the ways that CAAN is organizing to celebrate Black History Month this year is by throwing a black family festival and City resource fair. The Black Family Festival is important because we are not only investing in Portland’s black community, but we are honoring and celebrating the black family.

At this event, we will have free Sunday dinner, a bouncy house, teen center, kids zone, more than a dozen City bureaus, community organizations and two workshops on how to apply for jobs to the City and how to do business with the City.

I am very excited about this event, it is going to be a lot of fun! Please reach out to me at for any information about the event, volunteer, and tabling opportunities.

When: Sunday, February 24th, 2019
Where: Montavilla Community Center 8219 NE Glisan Street
More details:

Civic Life online events calendar
image of wall calendar

Visit our online calendar featuring community, neighborhood, and events of interest to the activist community.

Copyright © 2018 Office of Community & Civic Life, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
1221 SW Fourth Ave., Suite 110, Portland, OR 97204

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The City of Portland ensures meaningful access to city programs, services, and activities to comply with Civil Rights Title VI and ADA Title II laws and reasonably provides: translation, interpretation, modifications, accommodations, alternative formats, auxiliary aids, and services. To request these services, contact 503-823-4000, City TTY 503-823-6868, Relay Service: 711  with such requests or visit this link: Request an Accommodation or Contact an ADA Coordinator