Getting People Involved…What To Do First

I’ve spent nearly my whole life organizing people together.  Tonight was a special night, bringing together a dozen Portland-area Asian/Pacific Islander activists to introduce them to APANO (Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon).  Many of us knew one another from various community projects, and some wonderful new connections were made.  I used an outline that I’ve used in many different contexts – UU, Campus, Environmental Justice, People of Color, Neighborhood:

  1. Welcome and Brief 1 minute Purpose of Gathering
  2. Personal Introductions
  3. Brief 2 minute Vision of Who We Are and Who We Hope To Be
  4. Why Did You Come/Why Are You Here – round robin, brainstorm, discussion
  5. What Would You Like to See
This can generally be accomplished in groups of 5-12 in 60 minutes or less.  Its simple, takes some preparation though.  Its most successful when you have a good, tested and articulate vision.  It also helps to know who you are, and who your audience is.
I sometimes find myself falling into this pattern of questions even in 1-1 discussions.  
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