At IMPACT we believe lots of wisdom, talents and gifts exist in community, but the challenge is finding the time and space to get to know one another and what we each have to give. IMPACT’s Network Night makes the time and provides the space. It is a monthly fun and interactive community gathering that brings people from all backgrounds together to connect, build relationships, and find out what we have to offer each other.
There are 3 key moments at every Network Night:
New and Good – a quick and fun way to get to know each other. We start, seated in a large circle, with each person invited to briefly share something NEW or GOOD that has recently happened in their life. This activity is a fun way to breathe positive aspirational energy into the room from the start. It also helps us to contemplate our blessings and share a bit of our story with each other.
Community Conversations – an opportunity for people to host conversations about things they want to talk about, issues they want to bring up, or ideas they want to share. Typically, 3-5 people will volunteer to host a “table talk” around a specific topic or idea that is current and relevant, such as affordable housing, starting a small business, or timebanking. Hosts then facilitate a 20-minute small group conversation with others in the room who share an interest in their topic.
Marketplace – a time to exchange favors, and identify ways to support each other. At every Network Night we take about 15 minutes in the group to exchange offers, requests, or declarations. Offers and requests can vary from a gently used dishwasher and computer classes (offers) to an extension ladder and advice on how to help teens with homework (requests). An example of a recent declaration is, “Next week, I’m going to start walking for 30 minutes each day.”
Currently, we host Network Night every month, alternating between locations in Long Branch and Wheaton. Soon, we hope to be able to offer Network Night with greater frequency in Long Branch and Wheaton, and to begin Network Night in Gaithersburg and the Briggs Chaney area. Please visit IMPACT's online calendar to learn about upcoming Network Nights – we hope to see you there!