Organizing Other Events around Your Facing Project
How could The Facing Project in your community be a jumping off point to organize events around the issue? Let’s say your project is about the stories of those surviving, or have survived, domestic violence. How could they be showcased during a “Facing Domestic Violence Awareness Week”? How could the stories be a platform to bring folks into your awareness events, and how could the events be a venue to share the stories?
In the original Muncie project, because we faced poverty, our partner organization put together a week of events to help attendees understand what it means to live in poverty. From food stamp challenges to community dialogues to tours of agencies working with those in poverty to speakers discussing the challenges of overcoming poverty, the community at large began discussing something they hadn’t discussed before. What does it mean to live in poverty and how can we end poverty?
We ended the week with the LIVE theatrical event. Local actors from Muncie Civic Theatre and Ball State University read monologues and acted out the stories of those living in poverty; the stories of citizens in the words of writers, spoken from the mouths of actors. Hundreds of people turned out for that final event. But that was just the beginning.
We wrapped poverty week with a Think Tank session in which we decided the communities working with those facing poverty in Muncie don’t communicate enough. The groups involved decided to begin meeting regularly and better sync their efforts.
Shortly after successfully completing Facing Poverty, TEAMWork for Quality Living, the host of Facing Poverty, received one of their largest gifts ever–$75,000 from a local bank to support their mission of ending poverty in Delaware County. The committee granting the gift said they were impressed with the coalition the group had put together for Facing Poverty in Muncie.
Jot some notes about what other events around your Facing Project might look like. Include results you want to achieve:
Your Facing Project could be as simple as having the book and LIVE theatrical event and sharing the stories with folks to begin community conversations. Or it could be a full-fledged Facing Project that starts out with stories and ends with the rallying of community around events and conversations for sustainable change.
You decide. What will you face?
Check out the “What’s Next” section of the Toolkit for ideas to continue the conversations in your community.