The Neighbourhoods Alive! (NA!) Community Outcomes Evaluation focused on the NA! strategy and model as well as the progress achieved by key program components, namely: the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund (NRF); the Neighbourhood Development Assistance (NDA); and the Neighbourhood Housing Assistance (NHA). A snapshot of findings is presented below.
Neighbourhood Revitalization – Stakeholders involved in NA! largely share a common understanding of neighbourhood revitalization as multi-dimensional efforts with the goal of improving conditions in communities. Any differences in the specific meaning or importance are often influenced by individual beliefs, needs, or priorities of key stakeholder groups.
Community-Led Model (CLM) – Available literature confirms that the CLM employed as a fundamental principle of NA! is a key feature of successful revitalization programs – viable solutions for revitalization must include the community members most impacted by the challenges. The evaluation confirms that the delivery of NA! through the key program components support a community-led model, and this model is consistently cited by NA! stakeholders as a best practice of the initiative.
Community Outcomes – Through its core programs, the NA! initiative seeks to achieve three long-term outcomes:
- Communities have leadership and capacity to maintain sustainable neighbourhoods.
- Communities have enhanced social, economic, physical, cultural and environmental conditions
- Communities have adequate, affordable, safe, quality housing to meet their needs
Overall Conclusions – The evaluation findings support the continued relevance and need for NA!. While there have been improvements in communities in many areas, the original neighbourhoods included in the NA! program continue to experience issues related to safety, economic hardship, and lack of affordable housing. The overall NA! program model and mix of interventions (NDA, NRF, NHA) are appropriate. The capacity of NRCs is improving and many projects are occuring under the NRF and NHA programs.