Thursday, February 27, 2014

An Important Step Forward

We are very pleased to share that the Tribune Building Project has been selected by ArtPlace America as a 2014 Creative Placemaking Grant finalist.  This is an incredibly competitive opportunity – our project was chosen from a pool of over 1,200 letters of inquiry. 

Ninety-seven finalists have been chosen from communities all across the nation, but our project is the only finalist in Wisconsin.  Of the chosen projects, 25% represent rural communities like ours; all other submissions represent suburban and urban communities.  

We look forward to the opportunity to submit our second round application later this spring.  The Tribune Building Project has activated an exciting energy and movement in our community – people who believe in themselves and are optimistic about the future.  Without your commitment, this opportunity would not be possible.

Read the full announcement and learn more about the finalists at: ArtPlace America Names 97 Finalists for Creative Placemaking Grants 

To read our initial proposal, go to: ArtPlace Letter of Inquiry 

Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Learning continues for Incourage and Knight Foundation

It was our good fortune in 2008 to be selected as one of the first Knight Community Information Challenge grantees. We remain in relationship with the Knight Foundation to this day.

Over the past six years, we’ve learned that at the end of the day, culture is created and sustained by human beings. Therefore, the unit of change in community is the resident… And change happens one person at a time.

The rules of engagement with communities have changed. Our traditional methods of outreach no longer work. “Sit and Get” meetings don’t cut it anymore. We find that one-on-one conversations and relationship building is far more effective, albeit very time and resource consuming. All of our work is now assessed by asking questions about participant learning, co-creation elements and defining the most appropriate role for Incourage.

We have learned that it comes down to the capacity of the human spirit to care about one another, be compassionate and – in our case – be connected by place. To recreate the threads that weave together community.

Helping people connect with their own souls, passions and ownership of place will – in turn – help us reclaim the souls of our communities.

These are some of my comments made earlier this week at Knight Foundation’s Media Learning Seminar in Miami. To watch the plenary video, and learn more go to: Embracing change: Five key lessons from innovative community foundations  

Learn more about Knight’s continued investment in Incourage at: 4 new community information investments focus on high-impact projects

Thanks for reading.