In this episode, Bruce Anderson from the Core Gift Institute talks with Jeff Mills, a community organizer in his hometown of Mississippi Mills, Ontario outside of Ottawa, Canada.
Jeff comes from a family legacy that believes strongly in the power of families and communities to work together to get things done. He works out of Mills Community Support, an organization that provides help to folks in his region, particularly people who are aging and people with disabilities. In community organizing terms, he’s a Gap worker…..constantly being in the messy and possibility-filled middle between neighborhoods, people who have asked for help, and the formal helping and government organizations in his community. He is relentless in following the primary principle of Asset-Based Community Development, which says to look first to the abundant relationships and capacity of local people before going elsewhere for help.
In this interview, Jeff tells stories of community change rooted in the gifts of neighbors, the importance of recognizing our blindness to the tremendous untapped abundance all around us, and the healing that’s possible when organizers recognize they, too, are hungry for feeling welcome and finding places to belong.