Welcome to Scribd. Sign in or start your free trial to enjoy unlimited e-books, audiobooks & documents.Find out more
Standard view
Full view
of .
Look up keyword
Like this
0 of .
Results for:
No results containing your search query
P. 1
Fall News 2011

Fall News 2011

|Views: 0|Likes:
Published by Johan Van de Putte
newsletter Public Conversations Project
newsletter Public Conversations Project

More info:

Published by: Johan Van de Putte on Oct 27, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less





Public Conversations Project
Feature articles
Events & Workshops
1-3, 11
 Family Dinner Project
5-7, 12
Q + A:Belle Abaya
From the Chairand President
 Her Voice:Linda Stout
4, 12
 Associate’s Corner:Bob Stains
©2011 Public Conversations Project | 46 Kondazian St., Watertown, MA 02472 | www.publicconversations.org 
Th Fami Dinnr Projct
Having a meal ogeher. Te concep is older hanhe ork. Ye, research ha validaes he beneso eaing dinner wih your amily is comparaively new—and wha was once common pracice eelsou-o-reach or many o oday’s ime-challengedamilies on schedule overload.
Space available:
for a exible, multi-use meeting
space in the Cambridgearea? “Conversation Place”can accommodate up to 40
people for your next
meeting,retreat, training, movie nightor yoga class. For moreinformation, please visit: www.publicconversations.org/ content/conversation-place
“By he ime I’m eigh, I’d like o learn o ie my shoes, know how o climb a ree, and go o Arica,” said he seven-year-old over a dinner o creaive homemade sushi.
Fall 2011 Newsletter
Te idea emerged in 2009 whenLondon—hen a ellow a Harvard’s Advanced Leadership Iniiaive—waspondering he nex chaper o her lie.“I waned o nd a way o promoeconversaion abou ehics and ehicalliving—abou how we rea eachoher every day a home, a work anda school. ”“Our ehics really sar a home,”coninues London. “So, I waned oundersand how o ge amilies o alk abou opics ha are imporan. Whado you do o promoe conversaion ahome?”Te research ha Londonand her eam oundabou amily dinners waspowerul. From happinesso healh o success (evenincreased vocabulary!),amily mealimes have benes or he spiri,mind, and healh o allamily members. Sudieslink regular amily meals wih higher grade-poinaverages, resilience and sel-eseem as well as lowerraes o subsance abuse, een pregnancy, eaingdisorders and depression.From ha research came a key undersandingha shapes Te Family Dinner Projec’s work,says London: “Families wan o have meaningulmealimes ogeher. Tey also wan a way oovercome heir obsacles, unlock heir own amily  wisdom and bene rom ohers’ experiences.”From rading in surace cha or meaningulconversaion and navigaing conicingschedules o eeding picky eaers and acingension, amilies sruggle wih nding he ime—and skills—o connec.“We noiced more and more ha i was rare orus o si and alk—we noiced ha here wassomehing missing,” shared Edward, one paricipanin Te Family Dinner Projec’s pilo. “I waned o bring back he amily uni. I waned o ocus on wha we’re all doing ha’s good and posiive in lie.
Coninued rom cover sory 
[Tis projec] was a good chance o rekindle ha.”London quickly pulled ogeher a high-level eam o nine people wih varied backgrounds in educaion,amily herapy, conic resoluion, research,ood, design, markeing and communicaions.Tese eam members camerom a hos o repuableorganizaions, includingMassachusets GeneralHospial, Harvard MedicalSchool, Harvard’s ProjecZero, and he PublicConversaions Projec.Public ConversaionsProjec’s ounder LauraChasin and Senior VicePresiden Bob Sains’early involvemen shapedhe movemen’s ocus onand approach o buildingmeaningul conversaion.Ta ocus has since led o a more ormalparnership, in which he Public ConversaionsProjec has assumed leadership and managemenresponsibiliy or Te Family Dinner Projec. TePublic Conversaions Projec has embraced heopporuniy o suppor and manage his growingprogram. PCP’s work has always ocused ondeepening rus, improving communicaion andcollaboraion and srenghening communiies,and Te Family Dinner Projec’s work builds hosecapaciies where skills are rs learned: in amilies.“Te parnership is a clear complemen o hePublic Conversaions Projec’s work,” says PCP VicePresiden Bob Sains. “Our commimen is o enablepeople o engage wih olks who hey perceive asdieren rom hem, and he rs place ha peoplehave he chance o do ha is wih heir amilies.” Aer a solid year o research and a ve-monh ormalpilo sudy under heir bel, his eam now has aour-par plan or creaing a grassroos movemenha improves he requency and qualiy o amilies’mealimes. Te uure-ocused roadmap includes:
• Working with existing communities, organizations
and groups o amilies (schools, aih insiuions,online communiies as well as individual amilies)
• Creating online resources that support families’
change and build communiy 
• Tapping into professional networks that share FDP’s
goals (pediaricians, amily herapiss, eachers)
• Publishing research that furthers
undersanding abou how and why Te Family DinnerProjec works and can lead o widespread change.“Firs and oremos, we wanedo ge people o acually si downogeher a he able and enjoy he experience,” says Ashley Sandvi, a oundaion programofcer and a ounding eammember who sared working wih London while compleingher maser’s degree a Harvard’sGraduae School o Educaion.“Secondly, we waned o helppeople improve he qualiy o heconversaions happening a he able. We also hopedo ge all amily members involved in he meal-makingprocess, collaboraively. Kids really enjoy playing ameaningul role in mealime.” Aer encouraging amilies o envision heir idealmealime and se heir own goals, Te Family Dinner Projec provides ools and resources osuppor hose goals.Sign up on he organizaion’s Web sie(www.heamilydinnerprojec.org)and you’ll be guided hrough a process ha asks amilies ocommi o having hree meals ogeher. Forms onhe sie ask each amily member o ouline his/her goals—rom he qualiy o he ood o heconversaion. Te sie provides a plehora o resources and ideas— rom recipes o conversaionsarers and even videos o kids cooking heir avorieoods—or planning he dinners. Aer each o hehree dinners, amily members evaluae how well hemealime me heir goals. Te organizaion’s blogprovides a place or amilies o share heir sories andexperiences wih one anoher.
Much more han mere reueling, he anciencusom o eaing ogeher has a signican impacon individuals’ well-being, rom he nourishmenpromised wih each bie o he menal simulaiono a rousing conversaion o he very developmeno one’s moral and ehical persona. Wih creaive sushi on he able and he quesion“wha do you hope o make happen in he nex year?” in he air, one o een pilo amiliesesed Te Family Dinner Projec’s approach.Te iniiaive helps amilies achieve heir ownmealime goals relaed o ood, un and meaningulconversaion abou opics ha mater o he amily,paricularly ehics.“Te idea is o creae neworks o people whoshare his value, suppor each oher, and who will hen inspire ohers,” says Te Family DinnerProjec Direcor John Sarrou. Te Projec doeshis by providing aciliaion ools or leaders wihin he neworks, online resources ororganizaions and amilies and by buildingonline communiy.Te new and quickly growing iniiaive aimso creae awareness, build suppor and shareresources ha help oday’s busy amilies creaemeaningul mealimes. In doing so, i also has hepower o nourish ehical hinking and each civildiscourse a home—a vial need in oday’s sociey,says co-ounder Shelly London.
Coninued on page 11Coninued on nex page
Earlier this year, Philippines-
based conict resolutionorganization, The Conict
Resolution Group Foundation(CoRe) started a campaignentitled Transformative Cells(T-Cells), aimed at buildingface-to-face communication skills among youngpeople. This spring, T-Cells trained 135 guidancecounselors from colleges and universities in MetroManila. The guidance counselors then trained 50student facilitators in each of their 135 schools.
Each student facilitator will invite six students to
take part in a T-Cell—a small group that will cometogether for a facilitated conversation about anagreed upon topic.Using this model, T-Cells has trained a totalof 1,790 student facilitators and at the endof September, 7,247 students from differentuniversities and colleges across Metro Manilaand nearby provinces had participated in variousT-Parties (events that hold multiple T-Cell dialoguessimultaneously in one venue). Multiple schoolsin Manila have adopted T-Cells as part of theircurriculum, the T-Cells Web site provides studentswith information and learning resources, and aT-Cellebrity Program allows students to vote viasocial media on T-Cells “ambassadors.” As thesestudents reach out to students in other areas ofthe country—and the world—founder Belle Abaya
expects T-Cells to multiply on a grand scale. Belle
started T-Cells after retiring from her position as thePresidential Advisor on the Peace Process in thePhilippines. PCP talks with her about what sparkedthe need for T-Cells and how it works.
Do you have a memory of something
specic that sparked your personal initialinterest in conict resolution?
Las year, I was on vacaion wih wo young women.Beorehand, I wondered wha kind o conversaionhe hree o us migh have. Bu during our rsdinner ogeher, I noiced boh o hem acively exing. Ten heir cell phones buzzed. Suddenly Irealized here were hree simulaneous conversaionshappening a he ime—and I was no in wo o hem.
Belle ABAyA 
In his 17 years a PCP, Senior Vice Presiden Bob Sains has brough his experience rom hemenal healh eld, his experisein workshop design, and wisdomabou how people learn o heorganizaion’s raining approach and programs.Bob became aware o PCP in 1994, when he signedup or he projec’s rs workshop on is reshapproach o dialogue. A he ime, Bob was workingor he Beter Homes Foundaion, raveling andeaching abou helping homeless amilies. He oundhimsel regularly coming up agains race, gender andclass issues and was hoping ha his new approach would have a posiive impac on his communiy  work. “I had never seen an approach o dierenceand diversiy like PCP’s beore,” shares Bob, “anapproach ha sared wih appreciaion.”He had o miss he second session o he workshopo ravel o Louisville, KY, o give a ve-day raining or 20 sa and voluneers rom localhomeless shelers. On he rs day o he raining,he discovered ha he group was deeply divided by race, economic saus, religion and sexualorienaion. Wih he knowledge rom he rssession o he PCP workshop, he revised his plan and
sared by aciliaing a dialogue insead o eaching.Sereoypes ell away, undersanding emerged andenduring relaionships were ormed. “I was a urningpoin or me,” explains Bob. “I said o mysel: Tis ispowerul. I have o ge more involved wih PCP.”Bob has been deeply involved in developing PCP’sraining programs since he was brough on as
Training Director in 1995. In addition to co-creating
more han 30 workshops or PCP, Bob has rainedmore han 20,000 people, boh in he U.S. andabroad, over he course o his career.Bob’s pah o raining ook him hrough he worldo communiy menal healh. While working or heMassachusets Deparmen o Menal Healh in heearly 1980s as a psychoherapis, Bob helped creaeone o he rs mulidisciplinary psychiaric oureacheams in he counry. Te eam’s mission was ond he naural helpers in a communiy, elici heirknowledge, highligh heir srenghs and equip hem wih basic counseling and reerral skills. “We wouldask around he communiy o nd ou who people wen o when rouble came up,” recalls Bob. “Ten we would work wih olks (hairdressers, buildingsupers, clergy, ec.) o improve communiy healh by enhancing heir capaciy o help ohers.”Bob wen on o rain menal healh praciioners inseveral local and naional setings while mainaininga clinical pracice. Tis background was a good or PCP and is amily herapy roos. “We work romhe inside ou,” explains Bob. “I’s imporan o sar wih he experience o he learner as he rs eacher.I’s easy or us o orge he wisdom ha we have,or orge o exrac he lessons rom experiences we have lived. We creae learning environmensha are opporuniies or people o recall heir ownknowledge and reconnec wih wha hey weren’even aware ha hey knew, as well as o bene romour experience and hinking.”Bob has been insrumenal in collaboraing wih PCPcolleagues o orm a raining approach ha embodieshe same spiri and values as PCP’s work in he eld by emphasizing curiosiy, experienial learning, and aneliciive orienaion.
Coninued on page 12Coninued on page 6
Back in he room, when I ried asking a quesion, noone responded. When I looked over, boh women were wearing earphones plugged ino heir lapops,oblivious o my presence. A his momen, I realized echnologies ha were invened o increase conneciviy are hesame echnologies ha are eroding ace-o ace-communicaion skills. Wih young people inheriingan increasingly complicaed world, I became worriedabou he impac o echnologies ha make i easy o“un-riend,” o bully, and o isolae onesel. I wanedo bring dialogue skills o our young people.
CoRe says its purpose is to celebratehuman diversity. For you, how is thisconnected to conict resolution work?
People are increasingly inoleran o dierences.Tey spend an enormous amoun o energy ryingo persuade one anoher o ake heir side or poino view. Tey render a dialogue unsuccessul whenhey can’ ge oher people o agree wih hem. Inconversaions wih ohers, hey pu more eorino demolishing he oher’s argumen, insead o undersanding why people hink dierenly. Tis kindo atiude is very dangerous and damaging and is heroo o many conics. We a he CoRe Group believeha we will live in a much beter world i peoplelearn o appreciae why ohers hink rom paricularperspecives, value he ohers’ voices, and empahize wih ohers’ experiences, wihou necessarily agreeing.
What was the impetus for TransformativeCells (T-Cells)? What are your hopes for the project?
e impetus for T-Cells is the desire to equip our
 young people wih he all-imporan communicaionskills hey need o cope producively andconsrucively wih heir uure. We hope o oer young people a model or a new way o speaking andrelaing o one anoher, as well as o oher youngpeople in he Philippines and around he world. We believe ha when people change he way hey speak i can lead o greaer openness and creaiviy aroundaddressing challenges.

You're Reading a Free Preview

/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->