Schools act as a natural hub and may portend signs of a community's decline. As a countermeasure, local schools will work with various community organizations, businesses and agencies in a community mobilization effort to promote a cause. Stakeholders, or participants, in a community mobilization effort represent a specific segment of society. School board members, elected officials, neighborhood-watch advisory council members, nonprofit organizations and religious leaders act as stakeholder representatives to promote a cause.
Examining the Issue
Stakeholders collaborate with the local school administration, law enforcement and governing officials to gather data about the particular issue or problem to assess if it warrants a collaborative effort. Stakeholders evaluate the environment to determine whether an existing collaboration already exists to address the problem. Senior members will identify and engage all participating stakeholders after determining the issue worthy of a collaborative effort.
Overseers of a cause should consider a number of variables before choosing potential stakeholders, such as the psychological implications involved in each participant, the impact the collaboration will have on the school environment and its stakeholders, and existing credentials and skills that a prospective stakeholder can offer to the cause. Prospective stakeholders may include: school administrators, school board members, business leaders, elected officials, neighborhood watch, nonprofit organizations, community activists, probation services, trade organizations, faith community, social service organizations, federal law enforcement, corrections and media outlets.
Each individual stakeholder, including participating organizations, offers suggestions and expectations to the community policing effort. Overseers evaluate these expectations and potential contributions to determine if these suggestions or skills fall within reason. Overseers conduct a meeting to discuss these expectations to see if some of the organizational stakeholders will offer resources to the community policing effort, such as space to host regular meetings, supplies and equipment to produce educational presentations. Participating stakeholders often attend meetings and engage in special activities and projects if requested from overseers.
Overseers may choose individuals with the appropriate leadership skills as representative stakeholders for each organization. Overseers may select a representative stakeholder based on the amount of available time, required skills for participation, underlying knowledge of the cause, overall control of resources and additional credentials that qualify the candidate for the position. Local law-enforcement agencies may select a line-level officer, deputy or detective as a representative stakeholder. Line-level personnel will have the necessary knowledge of the specific problem, neighborhood, community or school; however, the sheriff or chief will need to grant permission to use organizational resources and manpower toward the cause.