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From the CommunityFrom the Community

NIFI Updates Issue Guide on Immigration

NCDD member org, the National Issues Forums Institute released their new updated issue guide, Immigration: What Should We Welcome? What Should We Do? In this short updated guide, you can find helpful information and three approaches to assist conversations on this topic that affects almost every single person in America. Read the new announcement below or find the original on NIFI’s here


New Issue Guide – Immigration: Who Should We Welcome, What Should We Do?

This issue is part of the Hidden Common Ground initiative, and sets of free materials are available for conveners and moderators. Scroll down for the Immigration issue guide and other related materials. Need help with your order? Contact customer service.

The immigration issue affects virtually every American, directly or indirectly, often in deeply personal ways. This guide is designed to help people deliberate together about how we should approach the issue. The three options presented here reflect different ways of understanding what is at stake and force us to think about what matters most to us when we face difficult problems that involve all of us and (more…)

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

NCDD Confab: Planning D&D Pedagogy in an Uncertain Fall

NCDD is excited to announce a special Confab Call for folks using dialogue & deliberation pedagogy in Higher Education:

Planning D&D Pedagogy in an Uncertain Fall
Using this as a time to collaborate, discover, and create shared resources

This free event takes place Thursday, July 30th from 1:00-3:00 PM Eastern/10:00 AM-12:00 PM Pacific. All who are working with students using dialogue & deliberation are welcome to join. Register today to secure your spot and complete a survey that will help us shape the session to respond to needs!

The upcoming fall semester is full of uncertainties. Even if there will be in-person instruction, it seems for many in Higher Education that online components will be a significant part of courses. For those who teach dialogue and deliberation to students, this presents some challenges. How can we do this work with students smoothly in a hybrid or fully online format?

The special NCDD Confab Call is intended to help Higher Ed folks – faculty and student affairs staff working with dialogue & deliberation pedagogy – share and explore together resources for transitioning to a predominantly online format in the fall (and perhaps beyond). On the call, participants will share resources they have been using, as well as talk about what the kinds of resources are needed to assist in this new format. NCDD hopes to utilize this event to help boost collaborative efforts and identify many resources, tools, and approaches that can be cataloged as a resource for everyone going forward.

If you have developed lessons, or tools, or have experience with student dialogues in an online format, join us and share! If you are still figuring out what you will do, bring your questions and needs to the discussion! This Confab is all about working together to make everyone’s work easier, as well as to help show just how connected and vibrant this field is and reinvigorate D&D studies in Higher Ed. We’ll share and explore perhaps what still needs creating for the fall and beyond.

Unable to join us? Fill out the brief survey we have created so we can learn more about your needs and offerings.

Don’t miss this collaborative event – register today!

About NCDD’s Confab Calls

Confab bubble imageNCDD’s Confab Calls are opportunities for members (and potential members) of NCDD to talk with and hear from innovators in our field about the work they’re doing and to connect with fellow members around shared interests. Membership in NCDD is encouraged but not required for participation. Confabs are free and open to all. Register today if you’d like to join us!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Interview with Joan Blades of Living Room Conversations

This story about Living Room Conversations, a longstanding NCDD friend and member organization, articulates the vision and relevance of gathering with others to practice communication in spite of differences. In 2010, Joan Blades in collaboration with friends from different political identities, created Living Room Conversations when they noticed the increasing difficulties in communicating with people across political divides. Living Room Conversations provides an important practice space where people can meet and discuss issues that matter greatly to communities across America.  These online gatherings allow, respect, and celebrate the diversity of viewpoints which are as varied as topics and participation.

The entire interview can be read below and you can find the original posting on the Gratefulness site here.


Grateful Changemakers: Living Room Conversations

Living Room Conversations envisions a world where people who have fundamental differences of opinion and backgrounds learn to work together with respect and even joy. The non-profit’s open-source conversation model — developed by dialogue experts — provides an accessible structure for engaging in meaningful, civil conversation — anywhere in the world, even virtually — with those who may have different viewpoints. Anyone is welcome to use Living Room Conversation’s free resources, which can be adapted to address the needs of any community working to bridge divides. Co-founder Joan Blades (who also co-founded moveon.org) shares more about how Living Room Conversations build relationships that support collaborative problem-solving and generate compassion.

What sparked the creation of Living Room Conversations?

In 2004, I wanted to understand why conservative people saw things so differently than I did. This required intentional effort to spend time with people that have very different views. I made friends and learned a lot, but by 2010 it was actually harder to have a good conversation about the climate with a conservative than it was in 2005. This inspired me to (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

EvDem Joins Virtual Conference on Jail Reform and Equity

This story is shared by Everyday Democracy an NCDD member organization, who participated in a nationwide virtual conference on the criminal justice system. The conference was hosted by The Safety and Justice Challenge and gave way for in-depth exploration at educational, networking, and dialogic solutions to the criminal system, and specifically jail reform. EvDem has been providing community engagement technical assistance to the Safety and Justice Challenge since 2018 and was honored to moderate an exchange session at the virtual convening.  In the session, EvDem shared the progress achieved in two jurisdictions where their dialogue to change approach is being implemented.

Read more about the overview of the convening and watch EvDem’s session in our post below, you can also find the original posting on the EvDem site here.


Equity in Criminal Justice and Strengthening Community Trust Through Dialogue to Action

The Safety and Justice Challenge supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has been working with leaders across the country to tackle one of the greatest drivers of over-incarceration in America – the misuse and overuse of jails.  Since January 2018, Everyday Democracy has been providing community engagement technical assistance to the Safety and Justice Challenge network and has helped specific jurisdictions adopt and implement racial equity-driven community engagement practices.

Everyday Democracy has focused its efforts in five geographical areas: (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

EP Student Facilitator Joins Anti-Racism Education Project

The following story is shared by our friends at Essential Partners, an NCDD sponsor member, who recently announced one of their student alumni has joined the international initiative, the Anti-Racism Education (A.R.E.) Project. 17-year-old Clay Thornton from North Carolina, who previously participated in Essential Partner’s program and is taking his facilitation skills into the important work of race dialogues. We are so excited to hear the youth are involved and powerful in this conversation. We encourage you to read more in the post below and find the original on the EP’s site here.


Impact Snapshot: Essential Partners-Trained Student Joins The Anti-Racism Education Project

The Los Angeles Times today reports on a new international initiative, the Anti-Racism Education (A.R.E.) Project. A.R.E. is a platform to connect interested young people with “existing educational resources, a supportive community, and opportunities to engage with Black scholars, activists, and artists who are willing to teach about the Black experience,” according to their website.

Since its launch at the end of May, the project has gained more than 400 members and 100 organizers in 17 countries and counting.

One of those organizers is Clay Thornton, 17 years old from North Carolina. Thorton participated in Essential Partners’ collaboration with (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Your Voice Ohio is Hiring – Apply by July 9th!

Our partners at the Jefferson Center, an NCDD sponsor organization, have an exciting position available for a part-time Communications and Program Coordinator at their media collaborative, Your Voice Ohio. Applications are due by Thursday, July 9th. Learn more about this position in the blog post below and find the original version on the Jefferson Center site here.

Did you know that NCDD has a Making-A-Living jobs listserv? In the upcoming days, you can find this and many more job announcements on this listserv – sign up for it here! This feature used to be available to NCDD members only and we have recently expanded this feature to all, to reach as many readers as possible. We would love for you to share this resource with all of those seeking employment and best of luck to all applicants!


Seeking a Communications & Program Coordinator

We are currently hiring for a Communications and Program Coordinator to support our Your Voice Ohio media collaborative.

Your Voice Ohio is the largest, sustained statewide media collaborative in the United States – with over 50 participating media partners across Ohio. Their team is currently seeking a (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Civic Saturday Fellowship Deadline Extended Until July 3rd

Citizen University announced they are extending the deadline for their Civic Saturday Fellowship application for one more week until Friday, July 3rd.

“The Civic Saturday Fellowship prepares motivated, local leaders (or, as we like to say, civic catalysts!) to start their own Civic Saturday gatherings in their home communities. In this nine-month fellowship, civic catalysts will attend the Civic Seminary, a three-day training in Seattle with Citizen University staff, and return home ready to create lasting impact in the civic life of their communities.” You can read more in the announcement below and find the original information on the CU site here.


Civic Saturday Fellowship Program

All around the country, we are facing a crisis in civic life – people are becoming more socially isolated, disconnected from a sense of common purpose, and cynical about their own ability to affect change. Enter Civic Saturday: a gathering that brings communities together to cultivate a sense of shared civic purpose and moral clarity. At Civic Saturday share a meaningful communal experience, and leave inspired to become more powerful, (more…)

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Our Common Purpose: Reinventing American Democracy for the 21st Century (June 11)

The following event was shared by our friend Sterling Speirn, who has served on the Commission on the Practice of Democratic Citizenship along with NCDD Members Martha McCoy and Carolyn Lukensmeyer. Register to attend at the link below!


Our Common Purpose: Reinventing American Democracy for the 21st Century

Join us for the release of the final report of the Commission on the Practice of Democratic Citizenship. Hear from the Commissioners, dedicated Americans, and organizations who came together to make these recommendations. Learn more about the steps we can take to improve the resilience of our democracy by 2026, our nation’s 250th anniversary.

This event takes place Thursday, June 11th at 1:00 PM Eastern/10:00 AM Pacific. Please register to join us via Zoom videoconference at amacad.org/events/our-common-purpose.

The event features Commission Co-chairs:
Danielle Allen, Director, Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics, Harvard University
Stephen B. Heintz, President, Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Eric Liu, President and CEO, Citizen University

Moderated by Judy Woodruff, Anchor, PBS NewsHour

With Remarks by:
David Brooks, Columnist, The New York Times
and David Oxtoby, President, American Academy of Arts & Sciences

The Commission on the Practice of Democratic Citizenship, a project of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, will deepen the national dialogue around democracy, citizenship, and community, by exploring civic engagement and political participation in the United States today and will set out a plan of action for promoting the values and behaviors that define effective citizenship in a diverse 21st century democracy. Read more about the Commission here.

NCDD EventsNCDD Events

Watch the May Confab: Envisioning a More Intentional Future

Last week NCDD hosted our May Confab Call, led by NCDD Board Member Lori Britt. On the call, over 60 participants identified topics their communities are discussing or will need to discuss in planning for the future after COVID. Thanks again to all who participated, and to those who shared report-outs and notes at the end, so we could capture these conversations!

During this event twenty topics were identified by participants as important to their communities in envisioning a more intentional future. Of these twenty, twelve were discussed by small groups and notes were taken to capture these conversations, including sharing opportunities, ideas, and potential actions. The full list of topics, as well as the notes from the small groups have been captured in the Google Doc accessible here. NCDD hopes this is the start of many conversations, so we encourage those interested to use to document to connect with one another and continue these conversations. You can also use our listservs as applicable – learn more about that here.

In addition to the notes, the event recording includes report-outs from each of these groups on their discussions. Check out the recording here.

Our sincere appreciation to Lori for leading this conversation, and for all participants for engaging thoughtfully with one another! We hope this conversation was the start of many to come, and NCDD will reach out in the future to follow-up about some of these conversations and how they have progressed as our communities begin to reopen and plan for the future. In the meantime, feel free to share what your community is grappling with or what you are working on in the comments below.

Confab bubble imageTo learn more about NCDD’s Confab Calls and hear recordings of others, visit www.ncdd.org/events/confabs. We love holding these events and we want to continue to elevate the work of our field with Confab Calls and Tech Tuesdays. It is through your generous contributions to NCDD that we can keep doing this work! That’s why we want to encourage you to support NCDD by making a donation or becoming an NCDD member today (you can also renew your membership by clicking here). Thank you!

From the CommunityFrom the Community

Register ASAP for Today’s Confab Call on Envisioning an Intentional Future

NCDD’s May Confab call is happening TODAY and we are looking forward to digging in with participants on envisioning an intentional future! Register now to join us for this call at 1:00 PM Eastern/10:00 AM Pacific. Courtney will present this session with NCDD Board Member Lori Britt. 

Earlier in the pandemic, NCDD hosted conversations to help the dialogue, deliberation, and public engagement community explore how to respond to the needs arising immediately in our own communities. These conversations primarily focused on how to continue our work in a virtual format and how to help our communities stay connected while physically distanced. Now, two months into this experience, we would like to launch a conversation on what we are learning about our communities, and how we might help community members recognize what they see as important to sustain or nurture going forward.

In this interactive session, which is free and open to all, participants will share what they are noticing about their communities during the pandemic and what topics they want to engage around further. More specifically, we’ll discuss: What are you noticing about your community that you want to make more space for as you go forward? What are you noticing that is essential and needs support going forward? We’ll share some of our reflections as a group, and then break into smaller groups to discuss different topics of importance to our communities.

We hope that this session will be a jumping-off point for many of us to engage our own communities around the issues that matter most to them. We’ll keep in touch to see how things go, and how we might learn from each other!

Join us to share what you’re observing and what you’re hoping for in your own community! Let’s plan for what comes next. Don’t miss this opportunity – register today to secure your spot!

About NCDD’s Confab Calls

Confab bubble imageNCDD’s Confab Calls are opportunities for members (and potential members) of NCDD to talk with and hear from innovators in our field about the work they’re doing and to connect with fellow members around shared interests. Membership in NCDD is encouraged but not required for participation. Confabs are free and open to all. Register today if you’d like to join us!

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