We ENGAGE participants by asking resonant questions.
Resonant questions are generative. They alter context. The simple process of attending to these questions allows space for new perceptions to arise and new insights to synthesize. This process allows the possibility for radical change because it releases the passion and wisdom already existing in the group. Through workshops, interviews, and interactive processes including writing, speaking, movement, and creative media, participants explore these questions and share their discoveries. Active engagement generates drive, enthusiasm, and hope.
We EMPOWER participants by listening well.
Often our participants, from literacy students to teen immigrants to survivors of domestic violence, are discussed from a deficit perspective. Hidden Voices projects provide the professional support and infrastructure to focus on the richness in their lives and to highlight the challenges they have overcome, as well as to address unexamined assumptions about who deserves access. Participants experience directly, in dialogue and conversation, their own expertise. The intrinsic value of being listened to becomes instrumental in creating space for change. Shared stories have the potential to become shared visions.
We ENVISION pathways forward.
Just as there are many answers to any resonant question, there are many pathways forward. Collaborative visioning enables us to respond creatively to the challenges and opportunities before us. What assumptions prevent us from understanding and engaging with the participants’ experiences? Who needs to hear these stories? What are the most effective strategies for offering change? A coherent vision does not mean everyone walks the same pathway; it means that we have envisioned together a destination.
We ENHANCE our communities, and our lives, through personal Innovative action.
The actions we carry home from our collective visioning must be passionate, personal, and possible. As listeners, whether audience members, exhibit viewers, or project participants, we can communicate broadly the perspectives of those most affected by these issues. We can identify where the current narrative misses the point and expand our shared story toward a richer and more truthful whole. We can open the door to more effective dialogue and more creative solutions.