Who are we?
Restore Merced is a community development effort focused on creating opportunities for low-moderate income residents in Merced, CA to experience spiritual, social, and economic flourishing. Employing an Assets Based Community Development approach in the downtown neighborhood, we began by looking at existing community efforts and areas of need in order to determine where to invest our time and energy. Through conversations with residents, faith leaders, and other community organizations, we identified three primary areas of focus for community transformation — neighborhood engagement, economic opportunities, and volunteer mobilization.
In order to accomplish our goal of seeing all Merced residents experience spiritual, social, and economic flourishing through the demonstration of Christ’s love, we seek to mobilize the local Church and community volunteers to enter into genuine, reciprocal relationships with neighbors in need. Through the development of these relationships, we believe that all Merced residents are given the opportunity to experience transformation in ways that bring to fruition the marks of a thriving community.
WHAT DO WE BELIEVE?
Community transformation happens in the context of relationship. We believe that people are inherently relational beings, dependent on others to reach our full potential. If a neighborhood or community is going to experience holistic transformation, it happens through healthy relationships. This is why we focus on creating a sense of family through our neighborhood engagement work in downtown. It’s in the context of this community that we seek to create economic opportunities for individuals who have previously been excluded from them. Lastly, we seek to increase individuals’ relational capital by including volunteers and other community members, placing them into reciprocal relationships where they experience mutual transformation.