The REAL Durham Model
Our model includes a community of Leaders, Allies, and other REAL Durham staff and volunteers, educating, supporting and lifting each other up as we work toward our vision for a more equitable Durham.
Training, education, coaching and support to develop intentional relationships.
Investment in relationships
by Leaders, Allies, Volunteers and Stakeholders
Training, education, coaching and support to develop financial security
Supportive relationships across lines of privilege
Investment in achieving goals by Leaders, Allies, Volunteers and Stakeholders
Training, education, coaching and support to develop community financial stability
Increased individual financial stability
The Role of Leaders
REAL Durham Leaders are individuals of low-income—often overworked, underpaid or unemployed—struggling to create a more safe and financially stable life for themselves and their families. Leaders enter into a collaborative journey with Allies and other Leaders as they pursue financial stability and a pathway to wealth. They select areas or issues from the Community Financial Stability track, become involved in advocacy or activism work, and may also participate in free financial education workshops.
REAL Durham Leaders share social capital. Marginalized communities and persons embody aspects of social capital that are often overlooked or devalued, but are critical to transforming our communities and building a more equitable Durham. These individuals and communities have their own resources to:
Build and sustain effective underground networks and resources
Consistently “make a way out of no way,” or create something from nothing
Trust and hope against the odds
Maintain a sense of belonging even though they are invisible to mainstream powers
The social and community ties promoted by these networks provide Leaders with the social, cognitive, and emotional support and resources they need. The vast skill set that is required for perseverance with dignity in violent, oppressive environments is just one aspect of social capital that Leaders bring to REAL Durham.
The Role of Allies
Allies are involved in a participatory journey with Leaders as they pursue financial stability and a pathway to wealth. It’s not just being, or walking with—it is essential that Aspiring Allies support, partner, and collaborate with Leaders to achieve their goals and overcome discriminatory barriers to full inclusion and equity in the city of Durham.
REAL Durham Allies open doors and share their privilege, power, access, and social capital with Leaders by
Supporting Leaders’ strategies and plans to reach long and short-term goals
Introducing Leaders to resourceful friends and colleagues
Introducing lesser known or hard-to-access resources
Providing referrals to living wage job opportunities
Helping with job searches, resumé development, and practice in interview skills
Supporting access to affordable health care/insurance
Supporting efforts to secure and maintain safe and stable housing
Accompanying Leaders at various educational workshops or other meetings