It’s Friday, April 26 and the Our Tomorrows project has collected 750 stories about times when families were thriving or just surviving. When the Center for Public Partnerships and Research started this project a year ago, we set a lofty goal of hearing 1000 experiences and stories. Apparently, 1000 was too low! Since January, we have had almost 50 meetings with partners across the state. With 20+ partners collecting at least 50 stories each… the math is looking good.
But more important than the stats and numbers are the relationships that have been built through this work. Our Tomorrows’ vision is that Kansas is the best place to raise a child. Through meeting you, talking with you, and reading your stories, we also know that the best ideas (and the people to carry them out) will come from you. That is the core of the project’s theory of change: “What can I do tomorrow to create more stories like the ones I want to see?”
To facilitate this process of trying many small, bottom-up changes, we want to make sure that the Our Tomorrows network has the knowledge and the tools to be successful. This blog will be an ongoing part of that effort.
The blog will be posted weekly as a journal of what is happening with Our Tomorrows. Topics will range from ideas about how to collect stories, answers to frequently asked questions, general updates, to technical issues to be aware of.  The blog is an opportunity to learn and share as we navigate this process together.
Some posts might not be for everyone! While the goal is to be accessible, some topics might be more academic and related to complexity, systems, or the theory behind SenseMaker research. Or they might be about challenges that just don’t apply to you. If you aren’t quite there yet, don’t worry! That’s what we are here for.
If you have any burning questions that you would like to see answered in the blog or would like to write a guest blog as an Our Tomorrows partner, please send us an email at I do take requests.
Tonight I’ll be celebrating the milestone of 750 stories at Final Friday festivities here in Lawrence. It’s a beautiful day for it!
Until next week,