Community Leaders

HARC and ASAP Are Inviting Community Leaders to Get Resources and Connections to Advance Your Community’s Response to Climate Change Impacts

Are you seeking to make your community safer, greener, or healthier and more prepared for climate change and extreme weather? Through the Leading with Equity in Adaptation Program (“LEAP”), you’ll connect with people and resources to implement your vision for preparing your community for future impacts. As climate change causes more flooding, heatwaves, and health impacts, communities are experiencing impacts on infrastructure, public health, and overall quality of life. Community members have firsthand knowledge of their environment and the deepest understanding of how climate impacts may threaten community assets – which are essential for effective response and preparation.

What is “Adaptation”? In the context of the LEAP program, “Adaptation” is short for “climate change adaptation.” It refers to adapting to the impacts of climate change and reducing the harm that those impacts cause. For example, one way to adapt to more frequent heatwaves is by getting more residents access to air conditioning.

The Leap Program Timeline. Program Structure and Details. Recruitment: Applications accepted now through March 24. Team Matching: March-May 2023. Program Kickoff Event: June 2023. Teambuilding and Team Dialogues: July-September 2023. Action Phase: Fall 2023-Summer 2024. Celebrating Accomplishments & Next Steps: Fall 2024.

LEAP Program participants will:

LEAP Program participants can expect to:

LEAP Program participants will need:

What makes a good LEAP leader?

LEAP leaders may be formally or informally chosen by their community to represent their interests and concerns. This project needs leaders who are thinking about climate instability, have capacity or interest to be part of the project, and know the community well.

What makes a good LEAP project?

A good project is both actionable (can be done in a reasonable amount of time) and effective (addresses the issue(s) it was designed to address). The most actionable and effective projects engage the full makeup of the community–across all sectors (residents, businesses, local government), demographics (groups of people from different backgrounds, ages), and geography (wards, chapters, neighborhoods). 

How to Apply

To indicate your interest in participating in the LEAP program, please answer the questions below and email to leap@HARCresearch.org by March 24. Applicants will be contacted with next steps. Questions can also be downloaded at this link.

Application Evaluation

Applications will be evaluated based on those who complete the application in time for program staff to review it, have a group of community members represented by leaders who are willing to meet regularly, the needs of the entire community, and how well question #5 fits with the LEAP timeline.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are interpretation services available for the LEAP program?

While we envision this program is most beneficial to participants who are fluent in the English language, we are open to providing interpretation services on a needs-basis. Contact Sequoia Riley at leap@HARCresearch.org to discuss needs and possibilities.

What are key meetings are community leaders expected to join?

The program will run from June 2023-Fall 2024.

The required events are a one-day Kick-Off Event (during the week of June 19, 2023), regular check-ins (Fall 2023-Summer 2024), and participation in the Celebratory Event (date TBD, Fall 2024). The LEAP team will work with the participants to plan these meetings based on availability and preferences.

What type of training is included in the program?

The training is designed for community leaders and participants from all backgrounds to acquire knowledge through presentations, demonstrations, and open discussion on leading with equity in adaptation practice. Demonstrations, presentations, and discussions in the program include topics such as:

What types of projects could the LEAP Program support?

LEAP is designed to support Community Leaders in identifying and scoping projects that will improve residents’ ability to address the impacts of climate change and extreme weather. If you already have a project ideas, tell us about it in your application. If you’re not sure, below are a few examples. These are only examples and your community’s ideas and needs might be different, but feel free to review them to help you get started on your application.

My community is outside of the Upper Texas Gulf Coast region. Can I still apply?

If you have any additional questions about the LEAP program, call Sequoia Riley at 281-364-6035.