Input gathered through facilitated sessions, involving more than 300 people representing 100% of the business sectors, resulted in a comprehensive Blueprint for Economic Resiliency and Reinvention in the Charlottesville region. The roadmap outlines 36 defined opportunities, organized by 4 themes and prioritized into categories of now, next and later across and within private, non-profit and public sectors. Six immediate opportunities are underway. The plan includes five Collaborative Initiatives, which call specifically for facilitated collaboration throughout implementation. One of these is currently underway, Inclusive Roundtables.
Context and challenges
The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce advocates, convenes and engages to strengthen business in the greater Charlottesville region. The Chamber’s simple yet clear vision is A Thriving Regional Economy. The Chamber’s role is a catalyst, convener and communicator to support local businesses of all sizes and industries towards a common goal of economic growth that leads to community prosperity. The Chamber serves 600 members with 5 professional staff and 9 volunteer ambassadors and is governed by 25 person Board of Directors.
The project was launched to restore the local economy in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis by engaging business members to share insights, identify challenges and build actionable strategies.
Develop a blueprint for reopening and restoring local business operations and building economic resiliency in the wake of COVID-19.
Engage a diverse group of stakeholders (owners, employees, subject matter experts, civic leaders and economic development professionals) to identify best practices and solutions to known challenges, begin executing near-term actions and plan for future opportunities across multiple economic sectors.
Use the momentum of the project to foster ongoing collaboration, creating a compounding effect to move forward together with solutions. Project Rebound lays out a path (what, how, when) to progress toward a thriving economy.
The project involved 4 phases:
Facilitation was foundational for the start of the project, gathering diverse community input – insights and ideas - upon which the rest of the project was based. More than 127 pages of input of hundreds of ideas were generated from more than 300 members of the community through facilitation of 16 sector-specific committee meetings and 3 community conversations.
Project Rebound Co-leads meeting
Project Rebound, community conversation