Types of Neighborhood Organizations
There are several different types of organizations that will meet the definition of a “neighborhood group.” Some of these organizations meet on a regular basis, some maintain formal membership lists, and others are organized more loosely. The common characteristic is that they are all gathering places for people who live in a particular geographic area and share a like concern.
A Neighborhood Association is a volunteer group of residents, business representatives, and other interested stakeholders that works together to improve and enhance the neighborhood in which they live. People come together at the association meetings to exchange ideas, propose solutions, prioritize potential projects, and generally talk about things that affect the neighborhood. Many neighborhood associations meet monthly to discuss neighborhood fundraisers, events that might enhance neighborhood pride, the publishing of directories and/or newsletters, etc.
Special Neighborhood Interest Groups
This type of organization is more focused than a general “neighborhood association”. It is generally organized around a central issue or cause. The members of this organization come together to address a special issue about which they are all concerned, whether it is a school or park or some other unifying issue. This type of organization is also organized within a definite geographic boundary.
Homeowners Associations usually represent a group of homeowners that live in homes built by the same builder or developer. These groups meet regularly to work on issues that affect their particular housing development. Homeowner associations usually have a formally-elected body and are governed by a set of rules that homeowners agree to when they purchase their home. These rules, or covenants, often govern construction regulations, membership/dues requirements, as well as a variety of other issues. Restrictive covenants are recorded with the subdivision plat in the county clerk's office. These associations may also have responsibility for ongoing maintenance of common property.
Like homeowners associations, condominium associations usually represent a group of condominium owners that live in condos built by the same builder or developer. These associations also have responsibility for ongoing maintenance and upkeep of common property.
Block Clubs & Neighborhood Watch Groups
Many areas of the community organized under the Neighborhood Watch program. These groups are a great tool for getting to know your neighbors and the area in which you live. Today, Neighborhood Watch is being promoted as an activity that all neighborhood groups should participate in, but it is still a great tool for organizing neighborhoods.
Some apartment complexes, mobile home parks, and other multi-family developments of substantial size often have their own volunteer organizations representing residents of those units. For instance, the Housing Authority of Bowling Green has a number of resident councils representing residents at its various housing sites: Angora Court, Bryant Way, and Summit View are some examples. Resident Councils often advise property owners on problems and potential solutions, participate in future planning, and coordinate events, programs and other activities that are beneficial to residents.
How Do We Become a Registered Neighborhood Organization?
To become a registered neighborhood organization in the City of Bowling Green, download, complete and return the Registration Form to the Neighborhood Action Office. Registration should be updated yearly.