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I'm working on a research project thru the Black Researchers Collective in Chicago. I've been assigned the Chicago-based neighborhood of South Chicago and need an Assest Map for it.
Does one exisist already? How does one find existing asset maps for various neighborhoods in America? I'd assume that they exist already as they are important, necessary and take time to complete. So do you know where I can find an Asset Map of the South Chicago neighborhood in Chicago,Illinois?

            Thank you for writing to the Community Tool Box with your question, and congratulations on your assignment.
            We are not aware of an existing general asset map for South Chicago, or of any general source for neighborhood asset maps across the country. But since we are based in Kansas rather than Chicago, it’s possible that there might be one we don’t know about. Probably the best way to find out is to check with local neighborhood  leaders and other neighborhood sources directly.
            There are also two Chicago-area organizations that might well know more than we do about this, since they are closer to the situation. One is the Asset-Building Community Development Institute, based at DePaul, which promotes asset-based programs in general.   See https://resources.depaul.edu/abcd-institute/Pages/default.aspx  The other is MAPS Corps, which emphasizes training youth as data collectors throughout a neighborhood. See https://mapscorps.org/
            These organizations might be able to help you in other ways as well.  Of course, you could also try a simple web search for “South Chicago asset maps”  and see what you come up with.
            If you can’t find the map you want, then you have the option – and the opportunity – to create a map of your own. As you suggest, these can take time to complete. And we don’t know how that would fit with the agenda of the Black Researchers Collective.
            But on the other hand, creating your own map could be an excellent experience for the neighborhood, as well for you personally.  If neighborhood residents were to participate with you in the mapping process (as we think they should) that could empower them to think about the strengths of their own neighborhood  in ways they might not have thought of before, and to trigger actions building on those assets that will improve their neighborhood quality of life.  
            In other words, map development can be a community building process in itself.  (And it can also be a fun thing to do!)
            If you head in that direction, there are many sources you could consult.  One source is the Community Tool Box itself, in Chapter 3, Section 8 of our Table of Contents, on Identifying Community Assets and Resources, at  https://ctb.ku.edu/en/table-of-contents/assessment/assessing-community-needs-and-resources/identify-community-assets/main.
            And here are some other how-to-do-it sources you could examine, going from simple to more complex:
            From the Center for Justice Innovation:   https://www.innovatingjustice.org/sites/default/files/documents/asset_mapping.pdf
             From a health policy center at UCLA:   https://healthpolicy.ucla.edu/sites/default/files/2023-08/tw_cba20.pdf
            From Palm Beach. Florida:    https://discover.pbcgov.org/ocr/PDF/REP/Module_5-Asset_Mapping_and_Neghborhood_Plans.pdf
            Take a look if you are able, and adapt what you like to your own neighborhood setting.
            We hope this much might be helpful to you.  Thanks again for being in touch -- and all best wishes for great success in your project.

Question Date: چ., 09/13/2023