Communities are only as strong as the people and families who live in them. Our programs provide opportunities for thoughtful and culturally appropriate exploration of values, systems, and challenges. As we get better at articulating our values, we develop a stronger sense of connection and agency so that we can thrive as individuals and communities.
To encourage leadership from within community, Heartland partners with schools and grassroots organizations to provide opportunities for people to build capacity, broaden networks, and exchange stories and ideas. Each group designs a part of their own agenda, and our curriculum is adapted based on cultural, developmental, and demographic needs.
- Coaches—facilitators, teachers, and instructors with years of professional experience in education, social work, and the arts.
- Facilitator training for community members
- Professional consultation to advise organizations as they build infrastructure and financial means to sustain programming
- Financial support to fund pilot programming
- Community events and professional development
Our trained coaches use the Socratic method to let group members drive the conversation, highlighting their questions and challenging ideas about identity and community. Initially, people in our groups explore different ways of expressing “who am I?” and “what is my community?” and “what is my story?”. We engage them using readings, poetry, small group exercises, and a rigorous examination of how others (writers, thinkers, artists, politicians, leaders) began the process of discovering their identities.