PICK Group’s Board Development Training Program Is Accepting Applications

(This article contains excerpts from PICK Group’s post on July 17, 2014.)

The Board Development Training Program (BDTP) is seeking engaged and civic-minded individuals between ages 21-40 who want to grow their personal potential and community value in Riverside.  Since 2009, BDTP has trained and placed more than 40 graduates onto local nonprofit boards of directors, including The Unforgettables, the Mission Inn Foundation, The Riverside Area Rape Crisis Center, Path of Life, and Community Connect.

The deadline has been extended until Monday, August 25, 2014 at 8 PM.

Photo Credit; The PICK Group

Photo Credit; PICK Group

Class participants learn numerous aspects of the nonprofit sector, including governance, legalities, financial management, strategic planning, fundraising, board recruitment, and marketing. Speakers on the various topics include experienced community leaders and experts in their field, such as Damien O’Farrell, Sue Mitchell, and Aaron Norris, among others.

PICK Group is a model of Seizing Our Destiny’s intelligent growth and unified city pillars.  They value and embrace the growth of the nonprofit sector in our community, and are dedicated to further engaging Riversiders to get involved with local non profits.  Pick group motivates individuals to get involved and take leadership roles in civic duty.  Getting Riversiders to come together and engage in civic duty is an effective route to accelerate the common good for the community as a whole.

BDTP’s mission is to educate participants on the roles and responsibilities of nonprofit board directorship, to inspire participants to utilize their skills to address the community’s needs, and to hone effective board members that serve as a model for the future leaders and betterment of Riverside.

Please contact Kristii MacEwen at bdtp@pickriverside.org with any questions regarding the application or if you are interested in recruiting one of PICK Group’s BDTP Graduates for your board of directors.

For the full article, or to get more information and apply, click here.


Riverside Embraces Transparency And Open Data

(This article contains excerpts from an article on cafwd.org by Christopher Nelson, published on 7/30/14)

City of Riverside making headway with new open data portal

With its brand new citywide transparency portal launched earlier this month, Riverside joins Los Angeles, Palo Alto, and other California cities that are embracing transparency and open data without reservation.  The city claims that the newly launched site “EngageRiverside” gives unfettered access to 815,000 documents that contain 3.4 million pages worth of information on any facts or data sets that inquiring citizens or journalists would want to know.

Photo credit: cafwd.org

Photo credit: cafwd.org

The site has sections for city records, budget and finance, general open data, council and board meeting agendas and info, election results, maps as well as one for reporting fraud. What is perhaps most interesting, however, is the one labeled “Share Your Ideas,” which after clicking leads you to a tool called MindMixer. It offers the ability for direct, two way communication between residents and city officials.

Although social media already exists for exchanges like this, residents create an account with MindMixer and it’s specifically tailored for this type of interaction while offering community members a chance to engage and share ideas with each other as well.  “Collaboration and making use of collective knowledge is critical,” said Lea Dessing, Chief Innovation Officer for Riverside at an event earlier this year at which she previewed some of the thinking behind Engage Riverside. “It’s not about government being all knowing, it’s about public participation.”

As a unified city, Riverside invites the community to get involved and participate.  “EngageRiverside is neither the beginning nor the end of our ongoing effort to improve transparency, but it is an important step forward,” Mayor Rusty Bailey said in a release.  Riversiders care about each other and understand that involvement like this will benefit everyone.   

To read more, click here.

Students Interact With Officials In Summer Bridge Programs

(This article contains excerpts from rusdlink.org.)

Over the past several weeks, students enrolled in RUSD Summer Bridge programs have had a unique opportunity to learn about our community and government by speaking directly with local, state and national leaders. Congressman Mark Takano, Assemblyman Jose Medina, Riverside, City Councilman Mike Gardner, and Darlene Trujillo-Elliot, Assistant to Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey and Riverside firefighters were among those who took part in this project.

Photo credit: RUSD

Photo credit: RUSD

Students participating in the community history project included those in the AVID Excel Middle School programs at Chemawa, Sierra andUniversity Heights Middle Schools and English Language Learner students from across the district.  Working with Taylor Libolt, Curator of Education for theMission Inn Museum, students learned about our community, researched government roles and wrote and practiced interview questions for dignitaries.

My broad goal with our community history project is to teach students about local history in non-traditional ways,” Darlene Trujillo-Libolt noted. “This is accomplished through guided research, walking tours, photography, mural design, and of course oral history interviews.  I hope that our students were able to gain insight into the many untold and unseen histories of Riverside by speaking with and learning from our community leaders and professionals.

Photo credit: RUSD

Photo credit: RUSD

The Summer Bridge Programs are great examples of Seizing Our Destiny’s unified city pillar.  Riverside is committed to nurturing an environment where everyone is involved and everyone has a voice.  Riverside is a city for everyone and by everyone. Riversiders respect and value the cultural heritage, distinct needs and varied input of each of our neighbors, while proactively engaging them across historical dividing lines.

To read more, click here.

Don’t Miss Restaurant Week In Riverside

(This article contains excerpts from riversideca.gov/dineriverside/)

Be sure to participate in Riverside Restaurant Week, and take advantage of all the great deals and discounts available.  Help support local restaurants and dine within the city.

Riverside Restaurant Week exemplifies seizing our destiny’s intelligent growth pillar.  Participating restaurants throughout the city are being highlighted to promote the great dining experiences  available to Riversiders.   Our city promotes an outstanding quality of life for all through intelligent growth.

Click here to see what restaurants are participating!


When is Riverside Restaurant Week?

Friday, June 20, 2014 through Sunday, June 29th.

Do I need to register?

No, registration is not necessary. As you dine at each participating restaurant, just let them know you’re there for the Riverside Restaurant Week special! Reservations are encouraged for those restaurants that accept them.

Who is supporting the event?

The City of Riverside alongside Riverside Downtown Partnership and Arlington Business Partnership.

For more information on Riverside Restaurant Week, click here.


Riverside Artnival Has Great Turnout

(This article contains excerpts from the Riverside Arts Council)

Artnival 2014 was a great opportunity not only in terms of serving a traditionally underserved population with a free, family-friendly event, but also as a cross-county promotional effort.  Approximately 300 people attended the event over the course of the day.  The Riverside Arts Council assisted The Community Foundation with the culminating activity of its Arts Regranting Program Inland Empire (funded through The James Irvine Foundation).

Photo credit: Patrick Brien

Photo credit: Patrick Brien

Victor Valley had a musical petting zoo, with one of the students served through the program there to demonstrate instruments for children and to guide them in trying the instruments out for themselves. The High Desert Cultural Arts Foundation had an exhibit of the work created by students, as well as a drawing workshop and a performance of work created in their children’s theatre workshop. The group from tps had an exhibit and a workshop.

This family oriented Artnival event is a great portrayal of seizing our destiny’s unified city pillar.  Riversiders from all backgrounds came together to be a part of the event and join in the fun.  People are brought together around common interests and concerns, while the unique character of Riverside’s neighborhoods and diverse communities are celebrated and valued. 

Photo credit: Patrick Brien

Photo credit: Patrick Brien

Events such as this have the power to have a far greater impact than numbers will show. One of the teenaged performers from the High Desert Cultural Arts Foundation is autistic. Until just a few months ago, she was non-verbal. When she began the program funded by The Community Foundation, she began to speak. At Artnival, she sang a number with her mother. No one in her family would have ever imagined that she would be able to stand up on a stage in front of a group of people, much less sing a song. Through Park and Rec’s sponsorship of this event, this girl was provided a therapeutic opportunity that will have a lifetime’s worth of benefits.


Riverside Experiments With More Affordable Public Area ‘Hotspots’

(This article contains excerpts from an article by David Downey, published in the Press-Entreprise on May 30, 2014.)

About the middle of last decade, municipalities across the Inland region were jumping on the broadband wireless wagon, vowing to blanket communities with “Wi-Fi” service and connect residents of all income levels to the Internet.  Riverside ended up being the only city to follow through. It hired AT&T to build and operate a system that debuted in May 2007. The idea was to blanket 95 percent of the city’s 83 square miles with free basic Internet access.

Riverside abandons nearly citywide system, joins area cities that have opted for more affordable public area ‘hotspots.’

Riverside abandons nearly citywide system, joins area cities that have opted for more affordable public area ‘hotspots.’

Seven years later, Riverside is abandoning what is now an out-of-date, little-used system, said Lea Deesing, the city’s chief innovation officer.  Revamping Riverside’s public internet capabilities is a large project that will benefit all Riversiders, regardless of socioeconomic status.  This project exemplifies seizing our destiny’s catalyst for innovation pillar.   Riverside has made it a priority to ensure that all residents  have internet access.  Our community leaders collaborate to address issues, which lead to more inventive and multi-disciplinary approaches. 

“We plan to shut it off on July 1,” Deesing said, adding that 1,600 devices on light poles and traffic signals will have to be dismantled.  Riverside opted not to spend an estimated $6 million to replace and modernize the network. Instead, the city has decided to experiment with hotspots, something other cities provide.

It is becoming increasingly important for people to connect to the Internet to obtain public services, apply for jobs and maintain bank accounts, among other things, the report states.

While Riverside had plenty of company around the nation in the area of public WiFi, it was on its own in Inland Southern California. A handful of cities, however, have opted to provide limited service in area hotspots.

To read the full article, click here.