The Community Exchange Update

The Community Exchange Update

Seeds Community Update re

The Community Exchange

February 27, 2022

Quick background

June 9, 2021 proposal 

In 2019, as Seeds Church was about to celebrate 20 years as a community of faith, we began to dream of
what the next 20 years would look like as we developed a community where people could CONNECT….to themselves, to others, and to God. 

Early in the process, the Seeds leadership and larger community imagined ways that we could see outside of ourselves and engage the broader community with opportunities that would include diverse groups of people, remove obstacles for those who needed support and use our resources to bring people together around food and other shared pursuits. What began as a ‘Seeds Church’ process, evolved into a much more comprehensive community conversation with many leaders and stakeholders of Altona. Further, it became clear to us that we had an opportunity to be a part of a larger vision of bringing people together to connect the helping agencies and services of Altona into a central community exchange and that to do that would mean spinning off this vision into a more inclusive entity for the sake of our town and surrounding areas. 

Today/Feb 2022

What started as an idea has now evolved into a larger working group. In September of last year, we formed a 10-person team coming from a broad cross section of ethnic, gender, racial and religious (or no religious) backgrounds. 

The larger group has been meeting monthly with a smaller executive meeting more often. 

What we now call The Community Exchange leadership has embraced the idea of “this building” , being our home. 

We’ve continued to approach community organizations in an effort to see what the community needs are and how we can partner with them to draw the broader community together. 

Our hope is to formerly launch “The Community Exchange” initiative in the fall of 2022, but that doesn’t mean we want to wait until then to start. 

A common theme that’s arisen through this process; dating back to earliest “Next 20” congregational meetings at Seeds before “The Community Exchange” even existed was food. That theme has continued throughout the research we’ve been doing as we meet with community partners. 

Whether it’s working with 

  • Regional Connections to facilitate cooking classes, 
  • encourage the various ethnic communities to participate in pop up food markets
  • opportunities for coffee/muffins and a conversation to develop
  • Coffee house featuring local talent 
  • Games and desert nights  
  • etc…..

Food seems to be central.

In order for “The Community Exchange” to host events like what I described above, some work will need to be done to the kitchen, café and possibly gathering area. 

My dear wife Joan Funk has met with our local public health inspector at the exchange. We’ve been given a clear indication of what’s required for our kitchen to be certified a commercial kitchen. 

We’re please that the renovations are relatively minor. We currently estimating the kitchen reno cost to be around $6,000. If we decided to do minor renovations (paint and flooring) in café area and possibly the gathering area the costs would be higher. Ad somewhere between $3,000 – $6,000 depending on what we all do.  

This is only the very beginning. We hope that through The Community Exchange initiative we will continue    to find new ways for our broader community to make use of this location. 

We see this as a community project and will be inviting others from The Community Exchange to participate. For now Seeds is the lead on these renos and will also be participating significantly in the costs. We’d like to invite you as individuals from the Seeds Congregation to consider making a personal 1 time donation to these renovations.

So……..we wanted you to be informed of what’s happening and we’re happy to answer any questions you might have. 

Feel free to reach out to Ted, Dar or myself with any questions.

Please make your donations out to Seeds Church and specify kitchen reno.