A simple way to celebrate creativity & connect with others in your community.
Give & Take is a simple and inspiring way to tap into the creativity and passion of individuals to create more engaged and resilient communities.
Give & Take developed as a community art project in Minneapolis, MN in 2009. The goal was to create a unique social setting where strangers could become neighbors. Participants from a diversity of backgrounds were encouraged to share their knowledge, skills and interests through presentations and playful, approachable games designed to break down social barriers and to get people talking.
Over the course of two years and 20 events, over 1500 people attended Give & Take in Minneapolis and St. Paul, all sharing their answers to two simple questions: What do you know? and What do you want to know? In the process they made new connections, sparked countless ideas and collaborations and helped to reweave the social fabric of their community.
Neighborhood organizations have used Give & Take to build connections around important issues facing their communities. Non-profit organizations have used Give & Take to build trust among project partners. Individuals have used Give & Take as creative way to get to know their neighbors. From professional conferences to block parties to community planning and design charrettes, Give & Take offers a participatory way to celebrate creativity and to connect to your community.
Here's how it works.
What if we could better tap into the stories, ideas, creative skills and passions of the people around us? Would they still be strangers? How would our perspective on social issues shift if we met more people with different ideas and experience? Would we feel more at home in our cities and neighborhoods? What could we accomplish together?
Give & Take encourages face-to-face connections across traditional boundaries of education, profession, social class and culture by creating a dedicated space for people to share knowledge and curiosity. We’ve found that this leads to unexpected and authentic connections, friendships and collaborations. Over time, these new social relationships can help our communities flourish by making individual knowledge and curiosity more visible and accessible, and by encouraging diverse perspectives and approaches.
Give & Take can also augment existing gatherings and events, encouraging creative and spontaneous interaction around things we know and want to know. This can help to reveal hidden talents and skills, and can create greater trust among coworkers, classmates or project partners.
Spontaneous conversation is not everyone’s cup of tea, and getting to know other people can be intimidating. Give & Take is one way to create an atmosphere where sharing personal stories and ideas, as well as teaching and learning from one another, can be fun, entertaining and empowering.
The Give & Take Nametags are designed to tap into hidden knowledge and curiosity, rather than relying on traditional introductions based on where someone lives or what they do for a living. This simple shift of perspective encourages people to dig deeper and to find common ground, discovering that the things they know can be fascinating to others, and the things they want to know can be answered in new ways by those around them.
The result is a deep well of topics that suddenly become part of the collective conversation. Rather than falling back on our usual and often guarded public personalities, we’re invited to share what makes us tick and to explore new ideas and connections.
We’re all probably familiar with the phrase, “It’s all about who you know.” How many of us get the opportunity to expand our social networks in spontaneous and diverse ways? The people we know can help us to build trust in ourselves, to understand perspectives other than our own, to find new economic opportunities, and to address relevant issues and burning questions. Social connections make us feel invested in the places around us. Give & Take can help to catalyze these connections in a safe and empowering social setting.
Give & Take helps connect individuals, and over time, creates more connected communities. Using the Give & Take Kit or Give & Take Nametags anyone can turn an ordinary gathering into an invitation to share personal stories, passions and curiosity, creating an opportunity for collective knowledge, resources and energy. It’s easy, it’s exciting, and it’s inexpensive. And we believe it will make our communities stronger, more connected, and ultimately, more resilient.
This is where it's happening.
Here's how to get it.
Whether your goal is to meet your neighbors, build a better work environment, create an engaging professional conference, or prepare your community group to tackle a big project together, Give & Take can help you create space to build new social relationships.
A Works Progress project.
Works Progress is an artist-led public design studio located in Minneapolis, MN. We create collaborative projects that inspire, inform and connect; catalyzing relationships across creative and cultural boundaries; and providing new platforms for public engagement.
Give & Take was originally developed by Ben Shardlow, Colin Kloecker and Troy Gallas.
This site, version 2 of give-take.org, was designed by Colin Kloecker, built from scratch by Anthony Tran and inspired by Form us With Love. This site is built with Kirby, a file-based content mangagement system. Fonts used are FF DIN and Proxima Nova.
All content is copyright © 2013 Works Progress Studio, LLC, except where noted.