Lily Sloane of Lily Sloane Therapy and Traci Ruble of Psyched in San Francisco are joining forces and donating our time and resources to help heal that which divides us through the fine art of skilled listening on the streets of San Francisco.
For two hours ten spaces throughout San Francisco will be set aside with two chairs and trained listeners from the Sidewalk Talk Project. The listener is offering to listen to any passerby who wants to talk, tell their story and be listened to.
Thursday, May 7, 2015 (Mental Health Awareness Month)
11:30am to 1:30 pm in locations across San Francisco
Community starts with intention. In our busy cities we have begun creating urban spaces that keep in mind our need for connection and community. Our intention is to create the psychological space inside the urban space for talking and listening to one another to heal whatever divides us. Race, economics, gender, vocation, religion, ability etc.
We Need Your Help
We need to raise at least $1500 by April 22nd. If we don't raise it all, we get none of it. We will use this money to print t-shirts for our listeners (and super donors), create printed materials for the press and to hand out on the day of the event, and to feed our volunteers. We want Sidewalk Talk to really make an impact, so we have to get the word out and make it look really professional.
What Else You Can Do
Give us a shout out on social media (#sidewalktalk) and tell your friends about us. While we would naturally love for you to volunteer to be a listener, we are already beyond maxed out on listeners for this round. (Not that this should stop you from listening in your daily life!)
Risks and challenges
We don't know exactly what's going to happen when we set up our chairs and offer our listening ears. That's what's exciting and that's what's challenging and risky about this project. But we want to take this risk because there's a collective stir to evolve the way we interact around mental health and we want to be part of it.
We also know that going out on the street and opening ourselves up to strangers is vulnerable and scary. Our listeners will not be alone as there will be two stationed at every site. And, we'll host an orientation where our listeners will get to practice their listening skills, learn about how to engage passersby and come up with a solid groundwork for creating safe boundaries for ourselves and those that choose to sit with us.
We intend to make it clear to volunteers and passersby that this is NOT psychotherapy though the experience may be "therapeutic". We will also get all the necessary information from the legal team with our professional organization in order to create clarity and limit this project to within a legal and ethical scope. In our community meeting prior to the event listeners will collaborate to trouble shoot these particular challenges and possible scenarios.
We love thinking outside the box and with that always comes a spirit of experimentation. We hope that our first Sidewalk Talk is a success and that we'll learn lessons that will help us do it even better next time and teach folks in other cities how to make it happen in their communities as well.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)