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Connecting the Dots one artist, one social service agency, one community at a time...

toolkit

for community building

CREATE > CONNECT > COLLABORATE > COMMUNICATE >

A CATALYST FOR CHANGE


METHODOLOGY:
Connecting the DotsA Collaborative Model for Change: Its an idea to create an umbrella-like collection of new and existing organizations and programs, sponsors, and individuals whose work can change the world. Unbroken is part of that collective changing the worldand beginning with the young men in our neighborhoods and communities.

MISSION:

Unbroken is a community building movement Connecting the Dots one artist, one social service agency, one community at a time, through collaborative partnerships and leveraged resources.
Unbroken is about connecting the dots and connecting to each other in a way that we never have beforeto collectively make a difference in our lives, our childrens lives, and in the lives of others. Were not reinventing the wheel. Were bringing all the spokes of the wheel together in a creative hub powering a movement for change one community a time. And with the rising tide, all ships are lifted! Missy Crutchfield, Founder

FOR MORE IDEAS READ: Connecting the Dots: the workbook

CREATE CONNECT COLLABORATE COMMUNICATE

toolkit

for community building

MOVEMENT

step one

Unbroken is a community building movement Connecting the Dots one artist, one social service agency, one community at a time, through collaborative partnerships and leveraged resources Its not another program or project Its a new way of doing business to bring about change and transformation in your community. Its not about How much money we have Its about Who we have at the table and what we each contribute to the bigger picture. Its not about developing a budget or business plan Its about looking at what partners and resources are already available and Connecting the Dots to make things happen in our community Its not about Doing things the way we have always done them Its about a new collaborative model for change Its about a grassroots movement that is built on collaborative partnerships, that is replicable across communities, and that is sustainable for the long run Its about Connecting the Dots and connecting to each other in a way that we never have beforeto collectively make a difference in our lives, our childrens lives, and the lives of others. It starts now. It starts today.

toolkit

for community building

VISION

step two

Unbroken is a community building movement Community building requires VISION What direction does your community what to move in? What action steps will your community take to accomplish your goals? Using a visioning process such as Nominal Group Technique allows all community members to have a voice and to be heard during the brainstorming process. This gives everyone buy-in and ownership. Each community member has an opportunity to voice suggestions which are recorded on a large tablet of pull-off sheets that can be posted on the wall. When suggestions have exhausted, then the group works together to vote on the suggestions and select the top priorities for moving forward and beginning work. Google the term Nominal Group Technique for more ideas and guidelines on how to use this visioning process. Call an Unbroken community-wide visioning session and invite potential partners, stakeholders, and volunteers including: Moms and Dads Kids and Teens Grandparents Aunts and Uncles Neighborhood Associations Schools Community Centers Churches and Faith-based Organizations Businesses and corporations Government Non-profits and NGOs Artists Media Clubs and Civic Groups From developing a vision to identifying top priorities to enlisting partners and volunteersthe next step is to launch an action plan

toolkit

for community building


MOVEMENT = ACTION.

ACTION

step three

Unbroken is a community building movement

Focusing on specific goals and top priorities for the community, Action Teams move ideas forward into action and make things happen. FOR EXAMPLE: The Whats Going On? partnership reading initiative brings together chamber councils and churches to sponsor social issue-driven book sections for community centers. The initial pilot connected with over 16 different neighborhoods. Reading volunteers connect with kids and teens during afterschool hours to work on reading skills, talk about the books, and facilitate conversations about social issues which eventually became part of a radio show series featuring local high school students discussing the issues of bullying and combating this social issue with positive peer pressure. The Connecting the Dots with Technology initiative is a nationallyrecognized model inspired by the mobile technology initiative launched in New Orleans following soon after Katrinas devastation of communications. The pilot involved partnering with local corporations in donating used computers and repurposing them for labs in neighborhood recreation centers. Taking the pilot to the next level, high school students had the opportunity to enroll in a virtual school program after school and during the summers. The local bus line provided passes for the students to get to the classes at their local recreation centers, and local faith-based organizations provided lunches. The students in the pilot achieved 100 percent success and have been able to graduate on time or be promoted to the next grade level. As the community meets specific goals and priorities from literacy to computer access and other needsthe next step is to reflect on what is working successfully and what can be added or improved...

toolkit

for community building

REFLECTION

step four

Unbroken is a community building movement Movement requires actiondoing thingsbut there is also a time and place for stopping, focusing, and taking an opportunity to reflect on where youve been and were youre headed Prompts for Individual Reflection 1.What was our Action Teams goal? 2. What was the outcome? 3. What was my role? 4. What steps did I take in fulfilling that role? 5. How did our group work together as a team? 6. What worked successfully overall? 7. What can be added or improved? Prompts for Group Reflection 1. What was our Action Teams goal? 2. What was the outcome? 3. What did each team member contribute? 4. What steps did we take in accomplishing our overall goal? 5. How did our team work together as a team? 6. What worked successfully overall? 7. What can we add or improve or do differently next time? Once your Action Team and your community has reflected on where youve been and where youre headedthe next step is to celebrate!

toolkit

step five

for community building

CELEBRATION

Unbroken is a community building movement An important part of building community involves CELEBRATION In countries and cultures around the world, breaking bread together is symbolic of building community Make sure to create opportunities for celebration in your community: FOR EXAMPLE: Pumpkin BallPlan a Halloween party for kids and teens at your local homeless shelter and have local youth groups bring their Trunk or Treat events to the shelter and share in the fun with refreshments, costumes, arts and crafts, games, stories, pumpkin carving, and treats. Make it an opportunity to break down barriers by building community and celebrating together the fall semester successes in school and community outreach. Christmas Reading PartyPlan a Christmas Party with a Purposeto celebrate the gift of reading and work with local artists and musicians to provide music, dance, arts and crafts, and stories. Invite local restaurants to donate refreshments. Include local storytellers to read favorite books. Collect unwrapped Christmas presents to give as prizes for school year reading accomplishments. As the community works together to Create a Vision for Change... To Take Action... To Reflect... And To Celebrate Word will spread about your Unbroken community building movementtelling a story that will resonate across the country and inspire others to join this collaborative movement for change Were connecting the dots, one artist, one social service agency, one community at a timean Unbroken City of Compassion.

toolkit

for community building

CAMPAIGNS

next steps

CAMPAIGNS cast a vision and inspire action Think about how you might work with your local media to create something yourself and get the message out about your Unbroken community building movement FOR EXAMPLE: A campaign to raise awareness about The Most Dangerous Time of the Day 3 to 6 p.m.afterschool. The campaign also serves as a call to action for community volunteers and organizations to get involved with afterschool programs and mentoring.

toolkit

for community building

SOCIAL NETWORKING

next steps

SOCIAL NETWORKING is an important part of the visioning and collaborative process in community building Organize social networking events for your community to create, connect, collaborate, and communicate FOR EXAMPLE: Connecting the Dots SummitInvite the community to an annual summit addressing arts and social issues. Engage artists and non-profit organizations in a community dialogue on addressing social issues through the arts. Breakout sessions deepen the conversations with focuses on: Arts & Education, Arts & Healing, Arts & Economic Development, and Community & Race Relations. The first years keynote speaker Rick Lowe (Project Row Houses in Houston, Texas) set the tone and direction for creative collaborations following the summit. Connecting the Dots Speed Networking session for Artists and Social Service AgenciesInspired by popular speed dating events, the Speed Networking session allows artists to have the opportunity to meet social service agencies and pitch ideas for collaboration and partnership. The pilot speed networking session proved highly successful and attendees mentioned it was the most useful networking event that had ever participated inleading to numerous innovative, cross-disciplinary partnerships for arts in healing, arts and education, and arts and local economic development.

toolkit

next steps

for community building

FUNDRAISING MODELS

With few resources at hand comes the need for collaborative partnerships, leveraged resources, and creative fundraising models to make things happen FOR EXAMPLE: Compassionate Giving CirclesA creative Unbroken fundraising model to encourage local businesses to hold Compassionate Giving Circles in corporate settings during the lunch hour. Employees can brownbag their lunch and donate the money they would have spent on lunch to help support the presenting arts or social service agency. The host business commits to matching the employees lunch donations during the Compassionate Giving Circle event, and employees have the opportunity to sign-up to volunteer, expanding community involvement and good corporate citizenship on multiple levels. How it works: 1. Presenting arts or social service agency raises awareness about programs and partnerships. 2. Employees brownbag lunch and donate lunch money to presenting arts or social service agency. 3. Host business matches employees donations to presenting arts or social service agency. 4. Employees can sign-up for volunteer opportunities. 5. The Unbroken community building movement can develop a Compassionate Giving Circles speakers circuit and tour presenting arts and social service agencies around the community.

toolkit

next steps

for community building

COMMUNICATIONS

Marketing and Communications are key in connecting your community for collaborative change and telling the story of your Unbroken community in a way that inspires others to get involved and take action. Old Media vs. New Media Old media is about creating a message for the masses. New media is about messages created by the masses. While it is important to get coverage in the local newspaper, on the television news, in the local magazines, and on radio talk shows, grassroots movements are led by the massesby the people, for the people. Web 2.0 tools are launching community building movements onto a whole new playing field as community organizers are armed with tools for creating media which were once only available to publishers and producers and for budgets worth thousands of dollars. Facebook | Twitter | Flickr | YouTube | Ning | Wordpress Unbroken communities can connect through stories, photos, videos, audio podcasts, blogs, and social networks. The possibilities are endless and the outcome is exponential. For more ideas on social media and grassroots movements visit the Alliance for Youth Movements website at: www.movements.org.

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! ! EDITOR IN CHIEF Missy Crutchfield EXECUTIVE EDITOR Melissa Turner EMAIL editors@bemagazine.org WEB www.bemagazine.org