Wildwood plans to form a task force to address community outreach opportunities for residents.
The task force would evaluate community outreach programs in relation to the current needs of residents and identify areas that could be improved.
City Council member Ken Remy (Ward 3), who proposed the idea of the task force, noted that Wildwood offers a number of different city-sponsored, community outreach opportunities as does a number of civic and nonprofit entities. He said he realized there was a need for many individuals, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home orders, to access these programs.
According to Remy, the task force would be centered on two areas. First, would be improving community engagement by identifying any barriers to involvement and discover ways to increase participation. Second, would be partnering with civic organizations and nonprofits to identify areas that have been oversaturated or undersaturated. For instance, if there are 10 bereavement adult groups but none for pediatric bereavement, that need would be addressed.
“From that point, we can identify ways we can improve awareness of these activities and programs, how we can partner with the city and community and have individual organizations partner with one another,” Remy said.
Not only could the task force improve programs with limited participation, but it could also eliminate duplication of resources, he said.
“Our strength will only be measured by engaging as many people in our community as we possibly can,” Remy said.
The task force will consist of eight voting community members, three city council voting members and ad hoc members with content expertise, city employees, and citizens.
Several on the council were eager to offer their support or volunteer to be on the task force.
“It’s something I think people in the community are going to be pretty excited about,” council member Don Bartoni (Ward 2) said. “I don’t know of any other municipality in this area that’s doing anything like this; this is going to be a positive step for Wildwood, for our city and for our residents, and set a good example to be a trend setter.”
The council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution creating the community outreach task force.