Sharing Stories

I’ve been working with the Facing Project for 4 months now. In those few months, I have had the opportunity to share my experience and the happenings of the Facing Project with various people. My friends, family, and colleagues have virtually shared the same reaction over the projects: Excitement. People are excited to hear other’s stories and what the telling of those stories has resulted in.

My boss at a part time job asked me if I had ever heard of the Facing Project. I was surprised. I am typically the one asking that question. I told her I had been working with the group for the past few months. A good conversation about the communities and issues that the Facing Project had been involved with ensued. As a Muncie local, she was enthusiastic about projects happening with her community. “This is so good for our city,” she said in reflection of the Poverty in Muncie Project.

Other groups that are excited about The Facing Project are communities who could potentially start up a project to face a pertinent issue in their area. Our staff is eager to help communities across the United States experience what the 10 (or so) Facing communities have experienced. We want the world to know the power of storytelling. So far we have only gotten good reviews. “Wow,” “that’s great,” and “we could really benefit from that” are common responses. The best thing about speaking with potential Facing communities is how our conversations reflect a unified effort to generate discussion and stimulate action to face some of these issues. It is truly unifying to hear someone in Pensacola, Florida, getting excited about what has happening in Manhattan, Kansas, or Muncie, Indiana.

My parents, being interested in their child’s whereabouts and do-abouts, asked me about my position with the Facing Project. Conveniently, I had a Facing Autism book from Muncie with me. I explained what I did and how exciting it was to be a part of this movement. My dad read Carter’s Story. He handed it to mom. She read Carter’s Story. She teared up. They began excitedly talking about how the church they went to would be a great platform for a project. The stories already written have generated excitement for new and different projects.

The power of the Facing Project is in the stories of the individuals; it’s in the mission of the involved organizations; it’s in the emotion of the people the stories reach. I immensely enjoy sharing the Autism in Muncie stories with my parents and the Facing Poverty stories with my boss. I have other experiences where I shared about the Facing Project’s involvement with the homeless in Fort Wayne with friends who are from Fort Wayne. Or the time I told my friends who are involved with slavery prevention groups on Ball State’s campus about the Facing Sex Trafficking in Atlanta. Their responses: Excitement.

If you are reading this right now, you have probably been a part of a Facing Project in some fashion. The stories you wrote or told or read or heard are powerful. They are worth sharing. I have found – to pleasant surprise – that people want to hear the stories of others. They are moved by the stories of others. They take action because of the stories of others. There is a certain excitement in these stories: A certain excitement worth sharing. So go do it! Share a story.

From the Facing Project team with Excitement      Josh

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