By David R. Shorey, East County Program Manager, Institute for Public Strategies
Photos courtesy IPS
March 4, 2023 (Lakeside) -- For almost 20 years, the Lakeside Community Collaborative has worked to enhance the health and safety of Lakeside residents. The Collaborative is made up of representatives from schools, law enforcement, chamber of commerce, public health organizations, and everyday Lakeside residents. Through monthly meetings, the group shares information and coordinates activities to address important issues facing Lakeside. This includes assessments of community conditions that could lead to substance use and abuse.
A “Walking Woodside” community assessment was conducted by the Lakeside Community Collaborative on a Saturday morning in February 2023. IPS was joined by a representative from the San Diego County Department of Homeless Solutions and Equitable Communities and a member of recently formed Lakeside Amity Group. We walked both sides of Woodside Avenue, between Winter Gardens Boulevard and Maine Avenue. A distance of about 1.4 miles.
The goal of the Collaborative was to not only conduct the assessment, but also encourage community engagement. We hope that this endeavor will bring awareness to issues like alcohol retail density. By physically walking down this street and taking in the environment, we were able to better identify with our own eyes, potential areas of concern. What we found was more than concerning, it was outright scary.