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The First (Conference) of Many to Come

L. Brian Jenkins, MA - Wednesday, November 09, 2011

We had the opportunity to attend our first conference as presenters at Innovate 2011, Christian Community Development Association’s (CCDA) national conference, which was held in Indianapolis, Indiana this past October. The theme focused on addressing innovative approaches to implementing Christian Community Development practices in our neighborhoods with an emphasis on educational reform.   

It was an incredible experience to connect with community advocates and leaders who are helping meet the spiritual, social and organizational needs of many underprivileged groups.

Falling under workshop tracks listed as Business as Ministry and Youth Empowerment, we presented on StartingUp Now’s model and separately discussed the shift in training and empowering youth around entrepreneurship with a presentation on the “E Generation.”

The tech industry, we emphasize, is a labor market that remains one of the few places that can been seen as a level playing field should individuals have the capacity and capabilities to develop technology software and tools as a skilled worker. We believe that training youth and young adults in technology development will help position them to be competitively employable in an ever-growing global marketplace.

Conversations and ideas were shared, birthed and cultivated during our time at the conference. We’re thankful for many of the people who stopped by our booth to not only learn more about entrepreneurship and sustainable models to replicate for those they serve in their communities, but for the positive feedback for what we’re doing to help many of them think through and implement new models that can be integrated into their existing work. 

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