Funding open space in underserved areas: pitfalls and opportunities 2003-11-11 Convened by: JohnEngle

Participants: sheryl shapiro, therese miller, merline engle, (two others came during the last 15 minutes) after sharing our backgrounds and what brought us to this session, we sought to find the common theme. we shared stories regarding the complexities and challenges of being in the business of funding:

john and his colleagues in haiti are working on a scheme for funding the spreading of open space and reflection circles in haiti. to learn more about their ideas, go to:

while they are developing this idea with haitian independent practitioners and haitian organizations in mind, we believe that similar schemes need to be developed so that open space can be spread among underserved areas in the US.

we see the need for open space, and perhaps other forms of facilitation which help groups to evolve and become more effective, to become as commonly accepted by foundations and private funders, as things like literacy and education. thus, people and organizations having funds which they hope to invest toward social change, could, for instance, give grants to underserved organizations, who would use the funds to contract open space facilitators to do open space with their group and to train members so that they would no longer need outside practitioners.

we welcome comments and input on this subject.

john engle

15:2) 2003-11-12 03:35 PT public user (public)         Edit Hi John

If a small group can meet to discuss how to live together and improve their lives, funding ought to follow involvement.  Once a grow finds the way to sustain itself on the journey, others can join when and where appropriate and bring new energy and resources.  My biggest pitfall is sustaining the early enthusiasm that will allow everything else, including resources, to flow.  I feel it has a lot to do with meaning, belonging and creating virtuous circles, letting funds follow commitment.

Hope you are having a great Conference.


Kerry Open Futures Edinburgh