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Positive Feedback for Community Connect

I am so happy to hear the things people are saying about Community: Connect! They are just the kind of outcomes I have envisioned.

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The Essence of Community: Connect!

Community: Connect! Is a combination of activities and attitudes that supports people in any kind of event to be more connected to each other so that they have maximum potential to build their network of community and mutual support.

Community: Connect! can:

  • stand alone as a three hour event. 
  • stand alone as a day-long or a weekend retreat
  • be integrated into an already existing conference or retreat.

The ways that people can express themselves in writing include the following:

  • A bulletin board organized in such a way that people can share a variety of things including "haves, wants and needs" and "Essence Blurbs"
  • Big pieces of paper posted around the venue where people can share various thoughts and feelings that in real time give feedbck to the event including topics like celebrate, next steps, ways to improve. 
  • Tables with such topics as "books to look at", "networking material"," and "Make an Essence Blurb"
  • A mural where people can use art to express a theme of gratitude or some other uplifting idea.

Activities can (but won't always) include:

  • A potluck or other kind of shared meal
  • Opportunities for people to share topics of conversation and skill sharing in break-out groups
  • A  Cafe' for people to relax, converse quietly, write, reflect, journal
  • Sharing of essence blurbs
  • Cooperative games and improv activities
  •  Meditation
  • Singing
  • Dancing
  • A list of attendees who want their information to be shared with others
  • A published list of notes taken by attendees that are sent out to attendees afterwards
  • Closing reflections about the event

The ideas for these activities have come from many sources, including Open Space Technology. I have simply put together the good ideas I have learned from others and experimented with in my 50 years of organizing events that connect people  in a way that has worked beautifully. I hope that you will feel nourished and uplifted by experiencing these things.



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5 Characteristics of a Change Agent

I encourage you to read this very informative article and decide for yourself if you are a social change agent in this article by George Couros entitled 5 Characteristics of a Change Agent.  Such things as having credibility and trustworthiness are included in the description. If you don't fit the description, I think you might be inspired to aspire to move in the direction this article suggests. 

I agree with George when he says: "I believe that change agents will help to create more leaders, not more followers."

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More Folks Who Will Be Presenting: The Excitement is Growing!

Thanks to the enthusiastic help from Alice Green and Raines Cohen, there is a growing interest in our event. Listed below are new people who will be coming to the Community: Connect! event in Oakland Friday May 27 at the Omni Commons in Oakland. 

Babsi’s Viennese Treats is a Berkeley-based cottage-food home bakery offering organic gluten-free low- and no-sugar treats inspired by traditional Viennese flavors. Raw, vegan, and paleo options are also available. We specialize in markets, festivals, and special events, and also facilitate community café gatherings envisioning a vibrant world! Http://  Barbara, the owner of the bakery, won't be able to be there, but her treats will!

Mindfulness, Meditation, and Loving kindness Practices for Social Change Agents: Carolina Cardenas, a professor from Chile:Carolena felt drawn to leave her comfortable home in Chile to live in the Bay Area for some months.   She is producing an event to celebrate the International Day of Friendship

Carl Gorringe and AZ Zaidi from Bay Area  Community Exchange will be on hand to sign people up for the local Time Bank. 

Carole Bennett-Simmons,  co-organizer of Transition Berkeley's two crop swaps, will be sharing her enthusiasm about local cooperation. 

 JP Massar, of Strike Debt  Bay Area, will be facilitating a 1/2 hour conversation about how to fight debt oppression with practical tools.

Cameron Cross of Imagine if there was an online community with the tools and resources to help you get the job done. That's why we created uBegin. "To accellerate the creation of healthy and wealthy communities"

Possible presenters. We are awaiting confirmation:

Community Boards

War Tax Resisters

People, this is going to be a GREAT chance to meet dynamic, interesting, movers and shakers: Social Change Agents. Come and join us!









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Time Line for Community: Connect! Event


 6-6:20 PM: Arrive and get settled in. Set out networking material, post notices (including needs and offerings) and make a creative name tag. Put your food on the table.  

 6:20-6:30 Get help in small groups to develop a 30 second "essence blurb" where you will help people to know very quickly what is important for them to know about you.

6:30-6:45 Opening circle: Share "Essence Blurbs" and topics of conversations and workshops

 6:45-7 Create the space: Using open space technology, we will quickly create a schedule where people can briefly introduce any uplifting topic they want to teach or talk about.

 7-7:35 Share a meal and be a part of a conversation that you either facilitate or join

 7:45-8:40 55 minute workshops and facilitated conversations which people can choose from

 8:45-9 Closing circle--A song and brief reflections

  9-9:20 Hang out and enjoy deepening the connections, perusing the networking table, and basking in the after glow of loving interactions.

9:20-10:00-Sing along song circle. Share a song that relates to social justice and uplifting topics. Please choose a song that is interactive so we can all participate. Sign up ahead of time because there are only eight 5 minute slots. Song presenters include: Lloyd Ferris, Stephanie Rearick, Patricia Mikkelson, David Glover

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How to Prepare for Maximum Results at a Community: Connect! event

Community: Connect! events come in a a variety of expressions.  Community: Connect! can be integrated into just about any production because our interactive, relationship-building activities and "action" stations are designed to enhance a wonderful feeling of community with attendees.
  • Flyers
  • Business cards 
  • Brochures
  • Things to post on bulletin board (announcements, etc)
  • Books that you love--just to let people look at. 
  • Notices for the "have it, want it, need it" bulletin board

For Optimal Outcomes, Prepare the following: 

  • Create An Essence blurb which helps people know who you are. See this post for ideas.
  • Create a simple symbol which you can post on your various notices.
  • Meditate one half hour before you come so that your brain will be in optimum condition
  • Think about a 20 minute presentation or conversation you would like to facilitate that either relates to the theme of the event, or which helps attendees connect, have fun, relax, etc.
  • Have clear intentions about how you want to interact with people in respectful, connecting, authentic ways that yield deep connections that can lead to further collaborations, team building and friendships
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Create Your "Essence Blurb"

Your "Essence Blurb" is something like an Elevator Speech. We thought a new title might bring inspiration and freshness to the idea. You will have 30 seconds during the opening circle to share about yourself. We will have sentences written out for you to complete We are still refining them, and would enjoy your feedback. Of course you are free to share anything you want!

  1. My name is...
  2. My roots are... (where you call home right now)
  3. My home now is....(your neighborhood, city, community)
  4. One thing I am passionate about is...
  5. Something I love to do in order to serve is....
  6. One way you can support me..
  7. A quick announcement is..

What sentences would you add? What do you like about this blog post? What could make it better? 


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Welcome to the Community Connect Blog!

This is the place to learn about what's happening with Community:Connect! events.

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