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August Letter to the NAFCM Family

Thursday, August 8, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lori Dieckman
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Dear NAFCM Family,

NAFCM is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2019! To commemorate this milestone, we have released a 25th Anniversary Celebration Handbook where we highlight monthly themes that reflect the breadth of community mediation and provide inspiration for actions you can take in your community. Thank you for sharing with us the exciting work you are doing to date, please keep those pictures and stories coming by sending them to Lori at ldieckman@nafcm.org.

In August, the theme we will be focusing on is “Thinking Globally, Acting Locally, and Networking Nationally”.  We all live in, learn from, and contribute to a variety of communities, from the global community that encompasses us all to the local community of your own street or block. These communities do not exist in isolation--they interact with and are affected by one another.

This month, we are focusing on the themes and trends that affect the global community, how these global trends affect your local community, and actions you can take to encourage positive growth. We also encourage you to use your national networks, such as NAFCM, to spread your experience, wisdom, and inspiration to others working on common causes. 

One global trend that has been taking place in recent decades, and that is particularly noticeable in the United States, is increasing amounts of polarization. One of the many causes of this is the highly fragmented nature of information in the internet age, allowing people to seek only the information that supports their pre-existing beliefs and form bubbles that shelter them from differing views. 

As facilitators of communication, we have something to offer those who are willing to open their ears and minds. If you believe this to be true for you and your work then please read this opportunity from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, which can be found at https://chanzuckerberg.com/rfa/request-for-information-capacity-building-practitioners/.

Also by creating a space for people to hear and to be heard, we can help people see outside of their bubble and start to build mutual understanding. In the NAFCM Virtual Library you can find a 12-part virtual workshop by the Public Conversations Project on how to create effective dialogue. This workshop can be found by clicking here or visiting https://www.nafcm.org/page/virtuallibrary_facilitation.

As always, we thank you for continuing to be part of the NAFCM family and your work to create a fairer and more equitable world through engagement! 

Warm regards, 

NAFCM Membership Enhancement Committee 

Committee members: Jed Friedland, Tina Estle, Steffanie Medina, Brennan Frazier, Maura Chavez, Sharon Eckstein, D.G. Mawn, Renata Valree, Sara Campos, Stephanie Grunze-Swanson


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