Journal of Community Psychology

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Community coalitions as spaces for collective voice, action, and the sharing of resources

Abstract

This study examined how a community coalition, focused on prevention efforts, can aid in bridging resources between community organizations in a resource‐deprived area. We also explored how it may serve as a venue to support significant changes to the community, adults, and youth who live there. Drawing on 18 individual interviews with adult coalition members from various community organizations, in a large, underserved city in the northeastern United States, we examined these data for narrations of the coalition's place within the broader prevention community and how the coalition may be an organizational venue for collective voice. We were specifically interested in hearing if these adult community members saw the coalition as filling a gap within their community. Our data revealed that while organizations within the community have been decimated due to reduced funding, the present coalition aided in meeting a variety of needs. These needs included the facilitation of community voice while helping to bridge resources between organizations, which would otherwise work alone.

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