Thriving Communities

What is thriving?

Thriving can be described as a felt sense of deep connection arising from the actions of everyday people who are so focused on creatively and cooperatively addressing basic needs within their communities that the results lift and engage everyone. Thriving initiatives generate holistic impacts, and the outcomes often inspire neighboring communities to innovate according to their own unique circumstances.

Learn about our upcoming 2016 Conference here.

Donate to the Thriving Communities Initiative


How can communities thrive?

Even in the midst of great challenges—social and environmental injustice, racial and economic inequities, disparities in access to healthy food and clean drinking water—there is an indomitable spirit in every community that says, “We can do better than this!” This spirit shines through in spots—pieces that, over time, are being stitched together into a new fabric of health, resilience, and wholeness. When this sense of thriving is present, one can feel it.

The stories in the short films on this site, and the archives to the right, show an infectious and unwavering human spirit reflected in individual and organizational activities. We are in awe of these common people doing uncommon work for the common good.

By March of 2016 we will have completed five sets of video stories—featuring thriving work across five distinct areas: food, local economy, health, shelter, and water. Along the way, we have fostered connections and helped solutions to take root in local communities throughout the Pacific Northwest bioregion and beyond.

In weaving these ideas together, we are discovering a greater depth of resilience and innovation than we ever imagined.

Following the threads in these video stories, we have identified five levels of inquiry, exploration, and testimony which help us in understanding and leveraging the power of this work:

  1. What has the video generated in its home community? In other communities?
  2. What has happened since the video was created?
  3. What is working well and/or what challenges is the organization facing? What can we learn from these?
  4. To what extent might there be replicable models or other “toolbox” opportunities available?
  5. Are there opportunities to hold “Thriving Evenings” or other informal gatherings on a specific topic in a community in the bioregion?

We look forward to sharing what we have discovered in response to these questions.