Gifts and Stories

Investing in Gifts and Stories: Transforming Ourselves and Our Communities

Audio Recording of Webinar July 22, 2014

If there was one thing, just one thing, that would secure our future, it would be the full discovery and contribution of each of our gifts.

Please enjoy our most recent conversation, Investing in Gifts and Stories: Transforming Ourselves and Our Communities, held on July 22, 2014. Our guests were Chene Swart and DeAmon Harges.  The conversation was hosted by Bruce Anderson, from Community Activators, located near Seattle, Washington, and Ann Ralston, principal of Ralston Consulting. We hope you enjoy this audio recording of our conversation.

This conversation is the next step along the path of Connecting for Communities. Over the next year we plan to host a gathering created by and for this community and welcome you to join in the design, planning and hosting of this gathering. If you are interested, please contact us at

deamon(1)DeAmon Harges is the original “Roving Listener” as a neighbor and staff member of the Broadway United Methodist Church, in Indianapolis, IN. His role is to listen and discover the gifts, passions and dreams of citizens in his community, and to find ways to utilize them in order to build community, economy, and mutual“delight.” DeAmon is also a Co-founder of Tesserae Learning Community, and an artist. Chené Swart is an author, speaker, teacher, coach and consultant of Narrative practices and ideas at Transformations, a consulting company in Pretoria South Africa that provides services to businesses, communities, and educational institutions across the world. In her work Chené co-creates transformational learning contexts and journeys that invite and enable participants to re-author the stories of their lives that honour their gifts, values and knowledge. judith snow Judith Snow, MA is a social innovator and an advocate for Inclusion – communities that welcome the participation of a wide diversity of people. She is also a visual artist and Founding Director of Laser Eagles Art Guild, an organization making creative activity available through art facilitation to artists with diverse ability: Communities can sustain themselves in a meager way with the absence of gifts, but thrive with the presence of gifts. If we acted on this idea, citizens would be welcomed not out of charity or privilege, but out of the wisdom that every person has a significant contribution to make to his or her community. This is the fundamental principle underlying community sustainability and social change work. There are no stories that do not have gifts underneath. Often waiting silently for recognition, gifts are eager to please and bring unexpected abundance into the story of community. Often discovered and understood more fully as a result of the struggles along our path, our gifts carry within them the powerful stories of our lives.