A kind of entity that may exist in a community: one that sees its role as developing the capacity of the community to address shared problems and opportunities.
Note that the role is developmental, and not focused on execution. There are a myriad of entities in any locale that are working directly on projects. This is a different kind of entity – whether it be an organization, a coalition, a loose association, or something else – that can be seen as part of the “civic infrastructure” of a place.
Such an entity is analogous to the role of, say, a forest ranger. A forest ranger sees their role as tending to the health and development of the forest that is in their charge. They are not in control of the forest. They harness resources that enable the forest to grow, and heal, itself. Sometimes the ranger engages in direct intervention, but this is not the norm.
Note that the forest ranger often lives in the forest itself – they themselves are part of the ecology that they seek to develop. And also note that there is rarely just one.
Not every locale has such an entity. Not every forest has a ranger. But some do.
Not every forest needs a ranger. But some do.