About Community Development Framework

What We Do

cdf-final_optCommunity Development Framework (CDF) brings together residents, community organizations, and city services in priority neighbourhoods across Ottawa. Together, we:

  • Identify local community issues and strengths.
  • Decide on the changes the community wants to make and set goals.
  • Build on neighbourhood strengths, and develop skills and support to make the changes happen.
    • Some goals require change at a level beyond the influence of the local community (for example traffic calming or access to affordable and nutritious food). An important aspect of the CDF approach is to support the “systems” level (i.e. community agencies and institutions) to address those concerns at a city-wide level.

As the name suggests, CDF is a framework—a way of working or an approach, not an organization.

In 2016 CDF identified the overarching theme focus of belonging and connection. It was recognized that strengthening links between neighbours, organizations and institutions is necessary to create positive change at a local level. The following graphic illustrates how strengthening belonging and connections also supports accomplishing priority goals that are identified by local communities.

CDF Focus - Sense of Belonging Graphic approved June 2016_opt

Who We Serve

The Community Development Framework approach focuses on neighbourhoods that face challenges related to socio-economic status, health, school readiness, and other demographics. Rural geographical considerations, crime statistics and other relevant data sources are also considered.

The Community Development Framework approach is most successful when residents and service providers work together for positive change.

CDF’s Guiding Principles

  • Get everyone involved
  • Encourage working together
  • Facilitate learning
  • Encourage leadership
  • Build on strengths
  • Leverage resources
  • Recognize complexity
  • Build relationships that will last
  • Plan for the future
  • Celebrate success

How CDF Works With Priority Neighbourhoods in Ottawa

  • CDF provides ways for residents and service providers to share knowledge and skills about how best to make change that will improve the neighbourhood.
  • It starts with the people who live and work in the neighbourhood.
  • Residents and community partners get together to identify the neighbourhood’s assets and needs by using tools such as a neighbourhood survey or discussion groups.
  • Residents and partners make a plan to address concerns and then they put the plan into action.
  • Community agencies and institutions identify possible partners and resources.
    • Resources may come from the neighbourhood, the city, or the province.
    • Community agencies and institutions help respond to the neighbourhood concerns that require change at a level beyond the neighbourhood, for example: access to affordable, nutritious food.
  • Residents and partners evaluate what is working well and what needs to be changed.
  • Residents and partners make changes and keep going.
  • CDF supports neighbourhoods to celebrate their accomplishments to improve their neighbourhoods.

What Our Communities Say. CDF is making a difference.

As a service provider, I appreciate that CDF has been able to bring critical partners such as School Boards and the City around the table to make a plan on how to increase neighbourhood access to community space.
Member of neighbourhood steering committee

As a resident, I have changed the way I see my community. Before I only saw the problems in my neighbourhood, but now I have more of a sense of what can be done and where to start.
Resident leader

Theory of Change

The goal of the theory of change is to show the pathway by which CDF objectives, outcomes and impacts lead to achieving the CDF long-term vision of ‘We Grow Strong Neighbourhoods Together’.Community Development Framework Theory of Change EN

Who We Are

CDF-who-we-areThe Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres maintains the primary responsibility for coordinating the CDF and its staff (secretariat).
The direction of CDF is governed by a Steering Table that consists of the executive directors of the Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres, senior leadership from agencies and institutions involved in community development and representatives from each of the primary CDF funding agencies. They meet quarterly.
The purpose of the Steering Table is to ensure successful implementation of the CDF by providing strategic leadership, leveraging resources and informing decisions. The Steering Table also oversees working groups aimed at addressing particular topics of interest as relates to the objectives of CDF. Currently, these working groups are:

  • Community Safety
  • Capacity Building and Civic Engagement
  • Access to community space
  • Food Security/CHRC Poverty and Hunger Working Group
  • Evaluation
  • Communications
  • Neighbourhood Resource Allocation

Each local community receiving CDF funds organizes a neighbourhood-level committee made up of agencies and institutions involved in the local community, resident associations and the CHRC community developer for the area. The CDF coordinator also attends local meetings.

The Community Development Framework is funded through three primary sources: the City of Ottawa, United Way and the Community Foundation of Ottawa. In addition to these key funders, there are numerous community partners who actively support the initiatives of local CDF communities by leveraging additional funds and resources. While these organizations do not fund CDF directly, their contributions to local communities strengthen the CDF approach. CDF also works in close partnership with the Ottawa Neighbourhood Social Capital Forum (ONSCF) to support local communities and evaluate community development initiatives.

Minutes from CDF Steering Table meetings of 2010 to the present time can be made available by contacting tammyc@seochc.on.ca.

2012 Annual Outcomes Report – Summary
Community Development Framework 2014 Highlights
2016 Connecting Neighbours Report
2016 Safety Report

CDF 2018 Annual Outcome Report – Summary

Steering Table

Simone Thibault, Executive Director
Centretown Community Health Centre
Centretown CHC

Clara Freire, Manager, Client Service Strategies,
Community and Social Services

City of Ottawa

Dr. Isra Levy, Medical Officer of Health
Gillian Connelly, Manager, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

Ottawa Public Health

Marco Pagani, Chief Executive Officer
Anita James, Director, Strategic Initiatives
Rebecca Aird, Director, Grants and Community Knowledge

Community Foundation of Ottawa

Charles Bordeleau, Chief
David Snoddy, Director, Community Development
Joan McKenna, Superintendent, Community Relations/Frontline Support

Ottawa Police Service