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Who We Are

Where We Came From

The South of Downtown Community Development Organization (SDCDO) originated from the South of Downtown Revitalization Plan, a gentrification plan that was funded by private investors and tasked with steering wealth-building through property investment. Before SDCDO’s foundation, conversations centered private interest and redevelopment without holding space for the lived experiences of the community. Today, we are far from where we came.

Where We Are Now

Since 2017, SDCDO has recentered around equitable community development in which the lived experiences of our neighbors are the driving force behind everything we do. We have laid a new foundation of Asset-Based Community Development, where the assets of our neighborhoods - our neighbors - are the ones leading the change that they want to see. From our programming being led by and for our neighbors to our staff and board being composed of past and present residents and folks with deep roots in the community, we strive to adopt our neighbors’ hopes and dreams for our shared community as our organizational priorities. 

These organizational priorities as community values and goals have been cemented into our public policy through the adoption of the South of Downtown Redevelopment & Strategic Plan (R&S Plan), a city plan that guides future investment in our neighborhoods. This Plan is the result of 3+ years of deep listening with neighbors at their doorsteps and block parties; with advocacy groups, multilingual parent groups in schools, and neighborhood associations; and in our SDCDO action committees. Even after 3+ years of elevating resident voices, goals, and concerns to our partners in the City of Lincoln’s Urban Development department to guide this plan, we still had work to do. When the draft R&S Plan was released, we held several listening sessions and one-on-one conversations with neighbors. We learned more about the inadequacies of the draft plan and its potential for allowing gentrification and displacement. As a result, the City of Lincoln adopted an amendment to the R&S Plan on gentrification and displacement mitigation, the first formal measure of this kind to be adopted by the City of Lincoln to address systemic poverty. For more information on the R&S Plan, you can read the Full Plan, the Executive Summary, or visit our page on the R&S Plan.

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