Framing Agreements

It’s time to talk to each other about how we talk to each other!

Good consultations regularly encounter hurdles.  If the developer and the community make the plan together they will be able to steer a safe path through potential obstacles.  Consider the following story from Edmonton’s North Glenora community:

“In our first meeting with the Westmount Presbyterian Church (WPC) and Right at Home Housing Society (RAH) we established that our objective was to have a best-in-class, inclusive community engagement process in order to deliver the best possible outcome for all parties.  We agreed that it would take time, but that WPC would commit to listening to the community and incorporating their feedback into the design.

I believe that everything good that followed hinged on this first understanding… and that enormous credit is due to WPC and RAH for having the courage to engage in this process with the community.  Having this shared understanding in place up front gave us a touchstone when discussions got heated or when shortcuts began to look appealing.”  (Andrew Gregory, community lead in the North Glenora consultation in 2015-16)

Inspired by this example TogetherWise developed two tools to help both the community and developer commit to shared values and in make a plan together.   (Provided below)

Together Wise Agreement and Planning guide

When the developer and community have completed some of the first steps and are ready to sit down to make a plan together, give TogetherWise a call and we will come facilitate this agreement and planning conversation.

Contact TogetherWise:

  • Pastor Mike Van Boom
  • 780.554.2703

Please note that TogetherWise does not look after logistics for this initial sit-down.  The community and the developer are asked to provide meeting space and refreshments (if so desired).

TogetherWise will supply material resources for this meeting including a printed resource guide.  Available at the following link:

Together Wise Resource Guide

From the TogetherWise creation story!

The above agreement framed by ICA Canada served the design team very well as we worked to create the TogetherWise approach and resources, and even inspired the title!  We began each design workshop with it, and refreshing it each time reinforced a sense of safety and welcome to all participants.