From September 25th-27th, more than 230 practitioners, researchers, organizers, and experts came together in Oakland and Vallejo to learn from each other about how to start more – and improve existing – PB processes as part of the 3rd International Conference on Participatory Budgeting in North America (#PBConf).
We believe that we can get to 500 PB processes in North America in the next 5 years.
Here are 4 things that we’ll need to make it happen.
1. Hard work
Starting a PB in your community takes a huge effort. It requires focusing political will and community support to try something new. At #PB Conf, we heard stories from Buffalo, NY, where organizers implemented PB after fighting for clean air in their community; from St. Petersburg, FL, where the local union is using organizing for PB as a way to create a more informed community; and from Los Angeles, where public housing residents are pushing for PB in the housing authority.
To see what our hard work looks like, follow us on Facebook!
Click here to see some photos from the conference
Supporting the growth of PB requires skills and experience. Almost half of the 230 conference attendees presented at or moderated one or more sessions, and over the past 5 years, over 46,000 community members have used PB to allocate $45 million. This means that there are now more PB experts than ever before. PBP is committed to sharing our expertise, to building new experts, and to creating new spaces for collaboration.
View the collaborative notes created at #PBConf this year:
We’ve worked tirelessly to create tools that make it easier to start new and improve existing PB processes. Our most recent effort is a new toolkit to help organizers and community members take concrete actions to build support and bring PB to their communities.
Download the kit and let us know what you think: participatorybudgeting.org/toolkit
Enthusiasm for PB is exploding and we are doing our best to keep up with the requests for assistance. You can help us grow by becoming a sustaining supporter and by telling your friends about PB and our work!