Weaving a web of changemaking
Are you……involved in social change?
…committed to increasing coordination and cooperation across difference?
…exchange wisdoms and practices without pressure to agree?
…participate in a support structure to build skills with others?
…help the work of “weaving” be recognized and encouraged?
…create space for open collaboration without pressure for unity;
…translate specific tools, ideas, resources, and strategies;
…frame perspectives within an emerging social-ecosystem;
…discover solutions & engage conflicts through mutual understanding and leveraging personal trust;
This is a call out for cross-pollinators who see themselves in an active role of overlap between multiple issues, identities, or ideologies. In a year-long experience we will facilitate a dynamic, focused exploration into the art and science of cross-pollination.
We will discover points of linkage and practice effective communication across diverse communities and approaches, first within the group and then expanding citywide. Together, we will enact the connections that we desperately need for successful, broad scale social justice and ecological restoration.
This cross-pollination project has been developed through a weave of conversations among some of Portland's most experienced grassroots organizers. The project is built to complement our existing work, stoke our passions, and invigorate our practices.
Want to try this out? Or, can you help advise the group?
We are meeting with interested applicants now!
Summer cross-pollination events
The year’s pilot program will begin in September. We will be building up into the year by offering a summertime series of public practice sessions, events and educational opportunities about cross-pollination.
** Cross-Pollination Sessions **
* May 22 (7-9 pm @ Red and Black Café), June 19, July 17, August 14*
In these sessions we will experiment with cross-pollination activities. You may participate by coming prepared to share a 2-minute explanation of one or more social change groups or activities that you are part of, and be ready to practice finding points of linkage with others. These activities will be playful and creative, each session building upon the previous.
** Cross-Pollination Slideshows **
* Wednesday, May 21st, 7:30pm, Maitreya Eco-Village, 1647 W. Broadway, EUGENE *
* Friday, May 23rd, 7pm, Village Building Convergence opening night, 722 E Burnside, PORTLAND *
* more slideshows will be announced continuously on http://journeydejenny.blogspot.com *
Join Jenny Leis in an evening of celebrating grassroots activism around the world. Be inspired with stories from her year’s journey as a traveling cross-pollinator!
More info on the Portland Cross-Pollination Project!
What is cross-pollination?
Simply, it is the skill and practice of helping communities work together and learn from each other, especially when they differ importantly over values, vision, identity, ideology, strategy, language, experience, position, etc. It's a grassroots attitude, focused on building many local connections between groups rather than relying on large, distant "coalitions" in which only overworked leaders participate meaningfully. Cross-pollinators build personal relationships with people within the communities involved, often participating in their lives and work, at least for a time. They help communities recognize the benefits of collaborating, work through the misunderstandings of culture clash, and support the emergence of new liaisons. They are skilled at the tools of diplomacy, active listening, and affirming what it is that makes each (sub)culture unique.
Why is cross-pollination important?
We live in a world of niche markets, hybrid identities, and organizational silos, rather than a uniform "mainstream". This means that people power today does not lie in "mass organizations" or getting everyone to agree on a single platform, leader, or organization. Instead, people power lies in the capacity of many different, small, local communities to be linked together in ways that allow positive changes to grow exponentially -- without undermining the fundamental autonomy of each group. Cross-pollinating is the experimental, practical work of facilitating those linkages.
How will this year-long project be useful?
Many of us are de facto cross-pollinators, at least to some extent. Some of us have recognized this role, given it a name (or, many names!), and work to get better at it. Two of us have chosen to convene a sifted circle of self-described cross-pollinators in order to explore the emerging theory and practice of cross-pollinating. Over a year’s time, we will learn new models and skills from each other, supplemented by written works and possible workshops, and continuously reflect on the results with a group of advisers. We will extend the cross-pollination to the broader Portland community through specific projects, clear communications and documentation. The result will be new understanding, experience and respect for the work of cultivating critical linkages among many kinds of communities, enabling the diverse people powered networks of Portland to emerge.
Sound exciting? Apply now to be part of the pilot project! Email or call Jenny at email@example.com or 503-548-8459 for more information.