Retreat Spotlight: Clinton Hill Community Action

Retreat Spotlight: Clinton Hill Community Action

In November 2021, Clinton Hill Community Action held a week-long retreat at The Uplands, titled “From Trust to Traction in 2021 to Impact in 2022.” 

Clinton Hill Action (CHA) is a community development organization based in the Clinton Hill neighborhood of Newark, that works to promote justice in the realms of housing, food, economic opportunity and the environment. The retreat participants – staff and advisors to the organization,  have direct ties to the community that they serve.

CHCA team

CHCA came to The Uplands for team building, strategic planning, organizational development, program development, and skill building, striking a balance of work, wellness, and play.

Using our modern conference facilities, the group reviewed their strategic plan, defined objectives for 2022, practiced their organizational messaging, implemented a new task management software, and engaged in team building activities using art and personality workshops.

The group advanced several programmatic goals, including a review of the milestones they had identified in their strategic plan for July-December 2021 and defining new milestones for the final quarter of 2021 and into the first quarter of 2022. The team also focused on CHCA’s ways of working with community residents, Action Teams and the organization’s unique approach to organizing and advocacy for transformative change. After practicing key messages and messaging guidelines related to CHCA’s mission, vision, priorities and work, the team also practiced specific tools for managing their workflow, tracking and reporting on their progress and managing program budgets. Alongside these activities, the group engaged in several teambuilding activities and wellness practices.

Utilizing art to envision CHCA’s collective success

After a particularly work-heavy day, an impromptu “Wellness Day” was requested by the team to their leader, and he accepted the request. This was a testament to the group’s attention to their own needs and their emphasis on self-care as a way to sustain their work. They enjoyed down time, a gentle yoga class, use our of pool and sauna, and a sound bath.

Despite the chilly weather, the group enjoyed nature-based wellness and team building opportunities. They experienced the Wellness Walk on the first day, and wanting to push themselves further, hiked a new and challenging 3-mile trail on The Uplands property.

Reflecting on “transformation” on the Wellness Walk
CHCA was the first group to hike our new “Brook Trail”!

Thank you, Clinton Hill Community Action, for your dedication to improving the lives of your community’s residents. It has been an honor to host you!



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