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Boston Strategy
frequently asked questions

The following questions are some of the most frequently asked of the partners when speaking with organizations across the country.

Download the entire FAQ

1. How Did You Get Started?
2. What Can We Do?
3. Can You Give Me An Example of A Way To Get Started?
4. What Are The Elements It Takes To Begin A Partnership?
5. How Did You Learn to Trust Each Other And Work Together?
6. How Do You Stay Focused?

FAQs Continued...
FAQ 1-6  |  FAQ 7-11   FAQ 12-17 

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How Did You Get Started?
We were all just adults–probation officers and police officers who happen to get along–working with kids who were most active and most visible in the community. It was just people working, after hours, stepping outside of their roles a little bit, being creative, being a little enthusiastic, working with the kids that were coming before the court. [ top ]

What Can We Do?
If what you're doing isn't working, realize that it can be done better. Decide you want to work harder, and you want to step outside your role a little bit. Stop doing what you're doing and do it a different way. Just do it in a different way, different location, with different clothes on and with different people. Think outside of your job requirements a little bit. These kids are alive all the time, so are you. They need work all the time, you need to be there. Reduce it to the basic bottom line: You're adults working with kids. You commit to the community, you commit to the kids. [ top ]

Can You Give Me An Example Of A Way To Get Started?
Ten Point Coalition drop by YVSF Pick up the phone and call someone in another agency with whom you have a connection of some sort but don't really know. Reach out to them. Then, after you call them, get up from behind your desk, get in your car, go over to their office and stick out your hand and say, "Hi, I am -- we just talked, can we talk now face to face?" So now there's a face connected to the name. So now they can put a face with a name, with the telephone message that they got. It's really simple. [ top ]

What Are The Elements It Takes To Begin A Partnership?
Credibility, experience, knowledge, commitment. You have to bring something to the table. To make the thing go, you have to be a viable agency. You have to have some juice and be able to do something to effectuate immediate change. That HAS to happen. [ top ]

How Did You Learn To Trust Each Other And Work Together?
Byner and Butts What's crucial to bringing a group together is to understand that you talk the talk, but can you walk the walk? And have you walked the walk? When you looked around the table, there wasn't anyone there that hadn't actually been deeply involved on the front lines with hard core juvenile justice issues. So there was no one you could criticize for just wanting to talk and not do anything after that. Everyone at that table had the respect of the others because of the work that they had done in the past, even if some were wearing jeans and tee shirts at one point and were now wearing suits and ties. All of us had done it before and still do it now, so we know the street level things, as well as the administrative pieces. And there really weren't any problems with having all those individuals together. Everybody respects everyone else's opinion because whether you've been on it from the street level, from the court level, or from the juvenile lock up level, everybody there had paid their dues. [ top ]

How Do You Stay Focused?
It's not that hard to accomplish if you come to the table with a very simple goal: let's make this better than it is. Let's focus on saving kids' lives. If you're not happy with the way things are going, come to the table with the idea that we have to collaborate to make things better and save kids' lives.

And don't come to the table in your role. Come to the table as a human being first who happens to be in whatever role you are in. [ top ]

Download the entire FAQ FAQ 1-6  |  FAQ 7-11   FAQ 12-17  

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