John Kesler is my patner in work with the Center for Engaging Community. He is a man of great vision. He attracts incredible people around him. He is very humble. And a great catalyzer of efforts. Together we co-direct the Center.
Last week, John and I were checking-in. Projects. Imaginations. Plans. A central point of our efforts is an initiative called Culture of Connection. We launched this effort in many ways with a large community event last spring. Today it lives in many people, committees, and community relations.
I wanted to name this initiative because last week John and I had one of those moments where we revisited purpose and a few agreements. We weren't trying to per se; but it became clear that in our phone conversation, that is what was happening. These all spoke to me...
- Bring capacity of conversation
- When we find competence and passion, help to catalyze the self-organizationt that manifests flourishing community.
- We can look through multiple lenses.
- Be a trusted neutral convenor, not an advocate.
- Grassroots community engagement.
This also spoke to me, three anchors. We support flourishing community by...
- Convening, training, connecting, practicing in conversation.
- Supporting technology that connects, both in content and social community (this a project that we are just starting to imagine)
- Grounding our work in specific domains -- currently feeling the biggest need in a bipartisan legislative dialogue project, and, and exploration into supporting and integrating immigrant and refugee communities in the Salt Lake Valley.