Method: A community data was established for the New Orleans East zip code area using New Orleans 211 community data base. Geographical Information Systems (GIS) were applied to calculate service proximity (accessibility). The study also incorporates data from local newspapers and interviews with community leaders and advocates. Literature indicates newspapers are good source of documenting civic behaviors, collective action, and social movements (Okamoto, 2007).
Results: The result of GIS mapping indicates limited services in the area of New Orleans East. Noticeable variation in terms of accessibility to community resources was found between different neighborhoods. Further, the analysis finds a strong collective force of co-ethnic bonding headed by the Mary Queen of Vietnam, a community development organization. This collective effort has generated community assets through creating four spaces (Feenstra, 2001): (1) social space: the development of community places such farmer markets, youth organization, intercultural charter school, community health center for community celebration and socialization; (2) political space: community members involvement in successfully contesting a landfill, running for community positions, civic participations; and community development; (3) intellectual space: vision of urban farm; (4) economic space: the ability to energize local economy through the revenues from urban farm.
Implication: The finding suggests that community can be revitalized and sustained by creating spaces for bonding and bridging social capitals. These spaces serve as foundation for long term goals of community wellbeing, and for discussion of challenges in intra and inter-groups interaction.