In 2011, I had this ambitious idea to create an internet presence where anyone could access government programs, nonprofit resources and other information necessary to create healthier, self-sustaining, revitalized communities. The website was called “When We Dream Together (WWDT)” and was beautifully designed by local entrepreneur, Syl Peeples Wilson. Turns out, it was a huge, costly failure…oops, I mean “challenge.” I underestimated the costs involved with promoting, driving people to the site, getting sponsors and maintaining such a grand data-driven endeavor.
A year later, 2012, I started the Sweet Potato Project (SPP) which has its own set of challenges and drifted away from WWDT. Yet, as I work to expand SPP into the arena of land-ownership (particularly involving young people) the idea that we need to work together is more important than ever. There are so many positive efforts in our region regarding home and land ownership, growing and selling food, neighborhood reclamation and revitalization and small business development, especially in North St. Louis. There are grassroots nonprofits engaged with meager resources and limited exposure.
It’s not prudent to relaunch the website at this time but I’d like to invite you to join me in posting stories, examples and ideas of collaborative, self-sustaining revitalization efforts on WWDT’s Facebook page. The goal is to generate excitement and collaboration around the possibilities inherent “When We Dream Together.”
Looking forward to your input and engagement. – Sylvester Brown, Jr.