Neighborhood Opportunity Network

Supporting one another in a time of crisis

Building trust one fall at a time

Posted by katieschmahl on March 16, 2010

Paula falls into the trust circle

In our second session of Neighbor Corps, it was all about building trust and figuring out what assumptions or stereotypes we make  about others that are different races, nationalities, genders or ages from us. First we discussed the actions we had taken over the week to connect with our accountability groups or with the rest of the participants in Neighbor Corps. Most groups had tried to meet up in person but couldn’t because of scheduling conflicts. However, they had still connected over email or by phone.

Next, we got into pairs and talked about the stereotypes each of us have about a group of people that are different from us and then shared with the bigger group. After enjoying some lunch from the Chicken Basket, we started learning about the different types of trust that exist; simple, blind, and authentic and then did a trust fall in a circle. Scott demonstrated and then we got into small circles and had one person in the middle who closed their eyes and fell backwards or forwards into the arms of people in the circle who would then push them gently back to standing position. For some people it was easy to trust the circle, but for others, it was more difficult and took a few times to be comfortable falling with your eyes closed!

Afterward, participants responded that they really appreciated the support they felt in the circle. Some said that they thought it was a metaphor for trusting in community while others noticed that some parts of the circle were not as strong as other parts but together we had made it work and nobody ever dropped the person in the middle!

We are clearly a stronger community when we’re all working together!

For our last activity we shared some personal stories about our social identities, such as: where we grew up, what our family experiences were, and how our experiences around race, ethnicity and nationality have influenced our views and attitudes today.

What we discovered was that when we acknowledge and value each others individual differences, we realize that by being a part of this group is so much better than being apart.

Stay tuned for Asset Mapping next week!!

One Response to “Building trust one fall at a time”

  1. Leo Romero said

    Nice! Do you have a list of your favorite team/community-building activities? We’d be happy to add them to this compilation of free icebreaking, team-building, community-making resources and selections, mainly from nonprofits, schools, and government agencies: http://ourblocks.net/icebreakers-for-team-community-building/

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