Facilitators Guide: 12 Domains GAME
Background to the Game
This is a game with the intent of triggering some ‘serious fun’. The game creates a framework for having a complex conversation about the unique functions of communities and institutions, as well as exploring the areas where can best work together.
Because we live in a consumerist world, where too often the assumption that a good life can be purchased in the market place is made, we have intentionally designed the game to make a point, that is: Community has unique and irreplaceable functions in building caring and sustaining societies. Systems are also important since there are limits to local and things we cannot do simply using people power, so too is it true to say that there are things that neither systems nor communities can do unilaterally and must partner with one another to achieve. Democracy is predicated on understanding and negotiating these spaces. My hope is this game makes that conversation a little easier and more fun.
Community: The Forgotten Tool of Change
The bias of this game is as follows: we can do more with People Power than most believe. Of late, the most important lesson to emerge, from what seems to me to be a fledgling renaissance of community life across the globe, is that there are certain things only citizens, organising themselves into associational networks, called communities, can achieve.
So what are the unique capacities of citizens that will propel this renaissance to its tipping point-that can not be purchased on the high street, and that the occupation of Wall Street will not release? What is it that only we can do together, that if not done by us will not get done?
I believe there are at least 12 domains that call on the unique competencies of citizens working together, and whose ambitions cannot be achieved without people power:
1. Promoting our Health & Wellbeing
2. Safety & Security
3. Nurturing Environment
4. Nurturing the Local Economy
5. Mindful Food Consumption & Production
6. Raising Powerful Connected Children
7. Ageing Well in Place/Locale
8. Building Communities
9. Civic Action for deeper Democracy & Just Society
10. Responding to Natural Disasters and climate change
11. Co-producing knowledge & sharing wisdom
12. Changing the World
When initiatives in these domains are viewed as an expression of collective intelligence, rather than isolated happens, we can begin to see them for what they are: the global emergence of a new invitation back to community, and a mobilization of a hidden wealth which could become a viable complementary currency for more sustainable investments in our shared future.
The message to government and other institutionalised systems, from citizens who are sharing their creative power in this way, is clear:
We are fortunate to live in a time when after decades of amnesia, we are again remembering what we all innately know: that in the ‘community way’ is found a path to health, wellbeing, safety, prosperity and environmental sustainability, which cannot be found elsewhere. We tell our ‘David and Goliath’ stories about our communities because we know that such amnesia can easily return, responsive to the whims of economic change. To paraphrase George Bernard Shaw, community prospers in adversity, and dies in prosperity. There is work to be done in building our futures, if we don’t do it using the giftedness of community, it will not get done. There is no substitute for people powered change….
“Every gift contains a danger. Whatever gift we have we are compelled to express. And if the expression of that gift is blocked, distorted, or merely allowed to languish, then the gift turns against us, and we suffer.” (Johnson, L - Thoughts on giftedness. Understanding Our Gifted)
Before you Play!
Before playing the game invite people at each table to read one of the summary cards that describe the domains, and encourage them to discuss what the cards meant to them. It is helpful if the numbers are large to do this in small group discussion within a cabaret format. You can then take feedback from each table, by asking: ‘what are the three nuggets of wisdom that we can take from these cards about People Powered Change?’ Encourage people not to repeat what has already been said by other tables, but instead to add and deepen.
When this is done after the We Can Game, it creates a powerful experiential learning environment for exploring the principles of Asset Based Community Development.
As the designer of this game my personal preference is firstly, to play this game after the We Can Game, and having read through the 12 Domains summary cards, over the period of a number of 60 minutes.
Secondly, I see this as much a tool for shared vision making as a discrete group exercise. Therefore the activity card options enclosed should not get in the way of people inventing their own answers to what activities should go where in the matrix.
Here’s how I suggest you proceed.
 for a detailed description of the 12 domains of people powered change visit http://issuu.com/cormac_russell/docs/12_domains_of_people_powered_c...
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