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Board of Directors Corner

Cultivating Voices Grows Community

Hello there! My name’s Matthew Young and as one of the newest members of the Commonwealth Terrace Cooperative (CTC) Board of Directors, it’s a tremendous pleasure and a refreshing opportunity to serve such a diverse, inviting community. A community which has welcomed academicians and their families I also would like to challenge each and every one of you as CTC residents to find a way to cultivate your voice which supports growing our greater community.

One of my favorite quotes which drives my personal and professional life alike comes from South African bishop and human rights advocate, Desmond Tutu. He recommends that in a world filled with daunting environmental, political, socioeconomic, and other kinds of global problems, we can “do our little bit of good where we are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”

Now, you may rightly be asking yourself, “This sounds beyond inspiring, but where can I even start?” I might then offer another favorite quote of mine from American spiritual writer Frederick Buechner: “The place [Destiny] calls you is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” Yes, it may sound crazy, but we all can be called to meet the needs of our own happiness and the needs of our broader world through being part of a community.

For example, I’ve been grateful since this past May to serve as the 2017 CTC Community Garden Plot Coordinator. In this role, not only have I been able to facilitate and problem-solve on plant watering and other issues with residents from countries including Chile, China, Pakistan and beyond. I’ve also found myself learning invaluable skills on cultivating leadership, on embracing strategies for crop layouts, and ultimately actively listening to other voices while growing my own voice.

In the month of August ahead, there are many ways with how you can join us and the rest of CTC in cultivating voices to grow community:

• In-person – Fill out a Community Voices Form in the CTC office

• Online – Contact us under the drop-down menu under Resident Relations

• By e-mail – Write to, your ward rep, or one of your board members

• In-person – Come to a Board meeting and share your concern in person. Meetings are generally at 6:30 on the 4th Wednesday of each month (but check the Monthly Meeting Agenda to be sure of the date & time.)

Also, browse the upcoming cooking, movie, sports, and other types of events highlighted below and all happening here at CTC in the coming weeks. If you have an event idea of your own to suggest and lead, let our CTC staff know. Whatever your background or your interest, remember that we at CTC want to help cultivate voices to grow our community. We can put our bits of good all together to overwhelm CTC and beyond. Thank you and we look forward to hearing from you!

Cheers & Happy Growing,

Matthew Young

Cultivating Safety This Summer

Ultimately, growing community at CTC and growing community anywhere means cultivating an atmosphere of safety for all our residents. Recently, we have heard from more and more CTC residents about their safety concerns over the course of the summer to date. With the rise in traffic and volume of visitors for the Minnesota State Fair starting on August 24th and lasting through Labor Day (September 4th), community safety will be even more important to foster. So, we wanted to highlight the top concerns our neighbors have AND best practices in response to each of these concerns:

Together, we can all make for a safer community at CTC this summer and in all seasons!