A hush has fallen over the hallways here at the W. Va. Center for Civic Life, and it’s not just that we are stunned by the heat wave (although we are also stunned by the heat wave): just days ago, we presented the 20th Civic Life Institute, and after all of the frenzied preparations in the weeks leading up to it, it is a relief to slow down, reflect, and give some thought to what we experienced and learned.
In case you aren’t familiar with the Civic Life Institute, it’s our annual workshop on civic engagement: how to bring people together for community conversations about tough issues, how to keep those conversations productive, and how to move from talk to action.
This year, we were joined by about 50 people, most from West Virginia, a few from the neighboring states of Kentucky and Ohio, one from Alabama, and one from Ghana (who admittedly already happened to be in Ohio—but still!). We had some great conversations (of course!), heard a ton from staff and attendees about their experience doing this sort of work, and learned a lot—so much, in fact, that we are still processing a great deal of it.
As part of that processing, I’ll be publishing multiple blog posts over the next few weeks sharing some of what we all experienced together and reflecting on what we learned. Thanks for reading, and let me know if you have any questions or want more details. Stay cool!