009 | Listening (Side B)

"This isn't indefinite, but it's essential."

It's important to sit with the weight of a story. To be contemplative and reflect on what we've heard and what we've learned. Living in a world that is so effective at stealing our attention, it makes this practice nearly impossible. We quickly tap "like" and scroll to the next snap, Instagram, fb post, or tweet. The comments become noise of everyone clambering to be heard and have the attention redirected. Here we discuss the nuts and bolts of the listening project and the necessity of making room to give the attention to someones real experience rather than our spin on it.

008 | Listening (Side A)

"Lets try not to delete this one..."

Not only do we cover a bit of early 90's hip hop and hear Jeremy's thoughts on cross-fit, we lay out our vision for Listening: A project of the Des Moines Collective. We know it's harder to ignore the marginalized if we know some of their names and hear their stories. Our hope is to create spaces where we aren't simply listening with the intent to respond or recite, but with the intent to learn.

005 | Shawn Duncan

Interview with Shawn Duncan

Our friend Dr. Shawn Duncan (that's right, we know a Dr.) graciously gave some of his time to answer a few questions. We're excited any time we can glean from his wisdom and experience. Shawn is the director of training and education at Focused Community Strategies. Check out their work at http://www.fcsministries.org.

003 | Engage

"We must transition relief into development."

Engagement is typically the exciting part. It feels really good to do something tangible for our neighbors. It's almost addicting. But every now and then, we have to step back and evaluate the real impact of our actions. Does the community really need what we're giving? Is our sense of accomplishment more important than the people we're serving?

002 | Collaborate

"Your pain is my pain, your joy is my joy."

Collaborating can be defined so many ways. It includes sharing resources, developing joint strategies, and leveraging each others unique skills to get the job done. But it means so much more than sharing the glory of an achieved outcome. At the heart of it is honestly sharing in each other pain as well as each others joy. It's believing that we belong to each other. 

001 | Listen

"Not listening robs people of the dignity of participating in the development process."

Listening is essential. It shapes our speech. It's how we learn. In regards to our communities, not listening robs people of the dignity of participating in the development process, isolates us and keeps our relationships shallow, and establishes echo chambers constantly affirming our "rightness".

000 | The Des Moines Collective

"Together, we can do something really special. Separately we can do something."

Our goal isn't to do something different, but to imagine what we can do together. Listening to the needs of our neighbors and our communities reveals healthy opportunities for collaboration and developmentally centered engagement. We want to be a resource to the city of Des Moines and build a network dedicated to helping people do even better work engaging the marginalized.