Change seldom happens quite the way it is originally envisioned. The implications for any mission-based enterprise are profound, but especially so for TGIAL and its initiatives. Our mandate is not only to design our endeavors around bold intentions, but to be open to unexpected and emergent outcomes.
This premise is fundamental to our Vital New Voices® (VNV) program. Continuous improvement, adaptation, and organizational learning are built into the values and working principles of the program.
We also believe that, as difficult as it is to make change, it is equally if not more difficult to measure it. Before broad social change can happen, however, many of the conditions for change must be in play. For this reason, we are focusing our efforts on a concept we are calling “Social Activators”. By “social Activator” we mean generating a broad range of specific individual, institutional and community attributes that provide the precursor for meaningful social change. At the very center of our thinking is the unique power of the arts to activate such change.
We are working with partners and funders who will join us on this journey of exploration and discovery aimed at demonstrating the validity and power of this Social Activator framework through tangible, on-the-ground programs in communities of need.
· Our INTENTION is to work with Youth, the Arts and Community Partners to develop individual and institutional Social Activators.
· Our BELIEF is that the arts provide a unique means to accelerate and enrich this enhancement AND, because of the very nature of the arts, open us to deep emergent learning.
Through our initiatives in New Haven CT and Atlanta GA, as pilots and prototypes, we have begun to formulate the Social Activator model. This is the model we continue to test and refine.