Miami Foundation Packs the Stage for Our Miami Project

The evening began with two able-bodied bouncers calling me over to the back alley entrance of the club. After scanning my I.D., they let me in. I walked straight into the packed venue of sweaty bodies. Soft sepia lights against the dark of the room, libations flowing--it's the standard for a night out in Miami. But not necessarily one you'd expect as the launchpad for a community development project.

Last night, the Miami Foundation kicked off its Our Miami initiative at the Stage with an overwhelming turn out of the city's community leaders and supporters, or "local change-agents," as the foundation calls them. The project was developed in association with a three-year study funded by the Knight Foundation. Known as Soul of the Community, it surveyed residents of metropolitan Miami (alongside 25 other national cities) in order to recognize what residents like most about where they live and which factors play the most important roles in connecting people to their community. In an effort to build attachment to our city and retain and foster Miami's burgeoning talent, the foundation launched the Public Spaces Challenge and Match305. Complimentary cocktails were served as attendees, from the suited up to the dressed down, engaged in a business card exchange of epic proportions.

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Briana Saati