The Bedford Community Partnership (BCP), created in 1998 is a coalition composed of both members of the community (parents and residents) and providers of social services, law enforcement, businesses, spiritual leaders, elected officials, school representatives, and many other interested or concerned parties. Our purpose is to promote, collaborate and partner strategies that effectively nurture the physical, sociological, and emotional health of children and families across generations. To ensure a consistent group effort, we have voted to adopt the following operating principles:
1. Bedford Community Partnership (BCP) functions in harmony with the by-laws or organizing principles of our parent coalitions; however, we do not have an executive committee or elected officers.
2. The method of decision making is consensus of those present at each meeting, and consistent participation is encouraged. This ensures that the opinion of everyone is heard and discussed and taken into account. Should consensus not be achieved, we propose the modified consensus format called Martha’s Rules of Order:
Yes, I’m for it.
No, I’m against it.
I abstain. I’ll sit out and let others decide.
I object! I cannot live with this decision.
Majority rules in all votes except the latter where group members work to address the objection of the group member(s) and retool the decision.
3. Bedford Community Partnership asks that the vendors providing or contracting services to the community meet program goals, provide progress reports on the project, and participate as a member of the team. BCP encourages vendors to recruit Team members from program participants.
4. Should funding become available, decisions on funding requests will follow an outlined schedule. In the event of a “crisis” for funding, it will be necessary for the agency requesting emergency monies to leave this request entered into the agenda for the next scheduled meeting. Representatives of organizations or individuals who request funding are expected to exempt themselves from voting on their own funding proposals.
5. Members of the BCP work as a team; therefore, all decisions, including grant applications, additional funding or spending, media representation, or representation at other events need approval of the group.
6. BCP supports the concept of collaboration and partnerships and encourages all parties to work in concert.
7. BCP is responsible to other organizations as its funding sources and to the targeted community to ensure that activities or events are accessible, user-friendly, inclusive, safe and reflect a healthy community. Therefore, events sponsored by BCP must be alcohol and drug free, follow separation of church and state guidelines, and support community improvement and involvement.
8. Facilitation of the meeting will rotate with the clerk of each meeting assuming responsibility for minutes of that meeting and notification and facilitation of the next meeting. Meetings will be held monthly, the first Wednesday of the month, at 9:00 a.m. in the Police Station.