The first regional forum for the Ministry of Culture's National Community-Building Conference was held at Yilan's Chung Hsing Cultural and Creative Park on Aug. 18. Almost 100 people passionate about Yilan and community-building work were in attendance, and through a full day's worth of group discussions and seminars, a consensus was built with an eye toward the next stage of community-building in the area.
This National Community-Building Conference is focused on the theme of "Creating Tomorrow's Communities," building on the four main themes of public governance, generational progress, pluralism, and social co-innovation, and aiming to further harness the collective strength of communities for social improvement and spark a revolution in public governance.
Minister of Culture Cheng Li-chiun remarked that starting the regional forums in Yilan came from the desire to pay tribute to the wealth of community-building results the region has seen, from the early "thousand-strong temple relocation project" to rescue the Old Wanggong Temple (王公舊廟) and its granary, to the environmental and economic revitalization of Baimi Clogs Village (白米木屐村) and the enrichment of tourism in Neicheng Community (內城社區), which has provided employment opportunities for local elders.
Through these and more, Yilan has accumulated extensive experience that is well worth learning from — experience that has ushered in a bottom-up transformation of communities amplified by the unique Yilan spirit, the Minister concluded.
The National Community-Building Conference provides platforms for dialogue between the people and their government to foster a shared vision for the future. Through a return to the true spirit of civic participation, public-led action plans and strategies will be developed with an eye toward the next 10, even 20 years of community-building in Taiwan. Once the conference has concluded, a white paper will be written up to summarize the results.
The next regional forum is scheduled for Aug. 24 at Dayspring in Matsu, with ten more regional forums taking place in Penghu, Taichung, Nantou, Tainan, Kaohsiung, Taipei, Hsinchu, Kinmen, Hualien, and Taitung through Sept. 29.