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Passing the Mic: Neighbors of Belknap Lookout answers, "How are you making sure you're engaging with the full diversity of your neighborhood?"

Elianna Bootzin from Neighbors of Belknap Lookout responds to King Park Neighbors' Shelby Garbini.

Neighbors of Belknap Lookout

NOBL serves its community by advocating for and enhancing the quality of life in the Belknap Lookout neighborhood. It empowers residents to be actively involved in this mission through programs around neighborhood land use, beautification, public safety, and racial equity.

The Belknap Lookout neighborhood is bordered by Leonard St. to the north, College Ave. to the east, Michigan St. to the south, and the Grand River to the west.

NOBL is also currently working to bring a virtual Undoing Racism workshop to Grand Rapids, conducted by The People's Institute for Survival and Beyond. Details about supporting the cause are available on NOBL's website, as well as the Undoing Racism Grand Rapids Facebook page.

Shelby Garbini, Board Member of King Park Neighbors, asks Grand Rapids' neighborhood associations:

  • "I’m curious how other neighborhood associations are really making sure that they are interacting and engaging with a diverse group of neighbors across all their boundaries? Are they tracking that in some way, or do they have some sort of plan to make sure that they capture all of those voices?"

Elianna Bootzin, Executive Director of Neighbors of Belknap Lookout, responds, and passes a question on to other neighborhood associations in the city:

  • "Even if you've got that good participation, how do you weigh opinions? Whose opinion counts more? How do you make that decision?"


Passing the Mic is a project of Community Media Center that promotes online, community-wide discussion of local issues and topics using the spoken word.

Residents are invited to share one to three-minute audio responses to locally-focused questions from fellow neighbors, with questions geared toward all Grand Rapidians or specific communities within the city. Keeping the discussion going, speakers are encouraged to end their responses with their own question related to a local issue or topic – passing along the opportunity to amplify community voices.

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