TRCC strengthens grasstops leader connections and capacity through:
- Community: gathering to nurture the trusted relationships at the heart of whole-system change
- Learning: sharing our expertise to build collective wisdom and high-leverage strategies far beyond “silo” behavior
- Action: incubating strategic efforts through “Co-Lab” short-term working groups and the Co-Project Initiative which funds major projects of community members
Our Collaboration Engine methodology is an ongoing rhythm of collaboration activities that is light enough for busy grasstops leaders to have enough time to participate, yet useful enough to keep them engaged to serve their needs. The Collaboration Engine methodology uses leading-edge system practices and is further described here.
All the collaboration activities are combined in our innovative broadly inclusive and radically democratic annual Co-Project Initiative. The Initiative prototypes a new paradigm for movement strategy and philanthropy, where over forty funders and activists from more than twenty organizations engage in strategic project development and participatory budgetting of a multi-funder pool. A diverse Council of funder and activist peers makes the grant recommendations. See the Co-Project Initiative for more information about strategic projects or donating opportunities.
Co-labs are the incubator petri dishes or seed pots for strategic collaboration. They are short-term working groups led by one or more members for strategic “R&D” exploration that could serve the movement. For more details and our Co-Lab History, see here.
TRCC hosts one or two annual community-wide gatherings, usually in the San Francisco Bay area with virtual participation from other regions. We design state-of-the-art gatherings using multiple modes of action learning such as ceremony (eg. blessing, music), learning (eg. presentations, trainings), interactive dialogue and story synthesis (eg. open space, mapping), and action initiation (eg. proaction cafes). All gatherings are co-hosted by a collaborative team from multiple organizations as a core practice in building our facilitation capacity.
The TRCC coordinates a quarterly webinar series for grassroots organizations, given by experts from our TRCC community and allies across sectors. We also curate a list of existing trainings each quarter and send that as a newsletter. Finally, the Lift Up program connects TRCC community members with mentoring from peers and allies, to assist leaders in boosting their capacity and personal well being.
HeartSpace is a regular reflective practice to nurture the community as people and as allies. HeartSpace creates the heart and soul energetic conditions to support members in their personal lives and to help the community to come into coherence as an ecosystem capable of co-creating radically effective change. The “heartkeeper” group enters a meditative space to intuitively listen into the field for support and guidance in relation to a real-world event or situation in the TRC community or its broader networks.
Movement Weaving is our practice of thinking together with each other and our allies to increase our collective impact. We use several methods of playing with the “Cynefin” framework for engaging with complexity, using a “probe, sense, respond” approach. We “probe” with discovery interviews and conversations and then “sense” together what is emerging in collaborative space. Click here to see an example report.
Movement Strategy Dialogues
The Dialogues are rounds of appreciative interview-style small group conversations and cafe-style large group conversations. Dialogue teams invite leaders in the field, individually or together with other leaders, to share the insights, opportunities, and issues in their work and then sense the collective thinking of the whole.
The Analysis team (aka Map team) looks at movement frameworks and patterns using TRCC network kumu maps. Kumu is the latest and greatest network and systems mapping tool.