Grand Aspirations will be hosting an end-of-summer event, the August Gathering, in Hartford, CT, from Monday August 20 to Friday August 24. We are extremely excited to invite our associates and allies to join members of all 16 of our Summer of Solutions programs for this week. If spending a week with amazing green economy building youth is exciting enough for you, go ahead and register here. If you want more information, read on.
The Gathering will be divided among four kinds of activities:
- Story sharing from our 16 Summer of Solutions programs and how they built sustainable community ventures in diverse communities. There will also be space for partners to share their work with this vibrant network.
- Concrete workshops on various green economy skills and projects — from building energy cooperatives to marketing your own produce — that anyone can leave with a basic understanding of how to replicate the projects. Again, non-Summer of Solutions partners will also be invited to give workshops if they are interested.
- Setting strategic directions for Grand Aspirations into the future. These workshops will be largely focused on people who consider themselves a part of the Grand Aspirations community but anyone is welcome to give input.
- Community building among all attendees of the Gathering. August Gathering is the only national event of Grand Aspirations each year and is a crucial time to form cross-country friendships. We’ll have fun activities and space to build relationships with everyone at the Gathering.
You can check out a draft gathering agenda here, but understand that it’s an early stage and open to change. Let us know on your registration form or in the comments on this post if you have any ideas for how to make it better. Registration for the Gathering costs $75, but we are open to conversations about different ways to accomplish the funding goals of the event than cash, so please don’t let cost be a barrier. This funding covers the cost of the programming and materials, three meals a day for the whole week, and space for sleeping and working.
We plan to host the Gathering at Emmanuel Lutheran Church in Hartford, CT. We will be sleeping in a shared space on air mattresses. If you need alternative sleeping arrangements, we would be glad to help arrange them. At this time, we are unable to provide travel assistance to people who are not Grand Aspirations volunteers or affiliated with the Summer of Solutions, but we would be glad to help you coordinate a carpool with other people who are attending.