At Our Core...
Citizens4Community members are simply people who are grateful to live, work and play in Sisters Country. We care deeply about the welfare of our community. We want to see it thrive—socially, economically and culturally. And we seek to more fully harness the wonderful, inherent talent and passion that our beautiful community naturally possesses.
We are non-partisan; and our core values emphasize objective listening, impartiality, inclusion and genuine, grassroots engagement. We believe that promoting healthy civic discourse and collaborative tools will enhance local teamwork and strengthen and prosper Sisters Country. And, by connecting ideas and people together more effectively here, we further hope to create a positive rippling effect across our region and beyond.
• Get to Know Us Better: Read Our BOARD & ADVISORY TEAM MEMBER Bios HERE.
What We've Achieved:
Some of our 'wins' to date...
• In October 2015, about three dozen local residents gathered for a public meeting at City Hall to discuss how civic discourse might be affecting Sisters Country. Attendees were introduced to Speak Your Peace, a community-building tool that has been tailored by cities and organizations across the globe to help foster more constructive engagement and debate. The Citizens4Community effort grew from that meeting.
• In November/December 2015, C4C applied for and received a grant from the Ford Family Foundation (Thank you, FFF!) to bring Rob Karwath, the national spokesperson for Speak Your Peace, to Sisters Country—so he could help kick off a broad discussion about civility and gather ideas on how Sisters Country might use SYP concepts to strengthen our community.
• In January 2016, Rob Karwath visited Sisters Country to talk with various local stakeholder groups on Speak Your Peace and facilitate a community-wide forum about its 9 tenets of civility—so local residents could consider if using these tenets might help further civil discourse and broaden community engagement. Local residents responded very favorably, and so C4C moved forward with the goal of making the effort a truly local, grassroots endeavor.
• In February 2016, C4C marked the formal roll-out of the Sisters Country Civility Project and the introduction of our local civility ‘Tool Cards.' Nearly 1,000 cards were distributed within a few months. Also, several formal Civility Project Adopters joined the effort. With their support and that of generous local Sponsors, C4C's message and tools began spreading widely throughout Sisters Country—and beyond. C4C leadership also was asked by representatives from other Oregon communities to share information with them about the Civility Project.
• During the Spring, Summer & Fall Quarters of 2016, C4C continued to gain sponsors and partners across the region and to offer our free quarterly information and skill-building sessions. These sessions brought excellent speakers and internationally recognized communication experts to Sisters. Each workshop highlighted a different core tenet of the Sisters Country Civility Project. Attendees learned practical strategies for communicating, collaborating and problem-solving more effectively as well as proven techniques to build trust and foster understanding. See our News and Events pages for details about these workshops. C4C also worked with students and Sisters High School to develop new civility tools (including a wonderful, new poster design as well as our "civiligrams"—small stickers that serve as little daily reminders of the benefits of practicing civil discourse. Additionally, C4C participated in Sisters' annual Harvest Faire; earned small but significant educational outreach grants from the City of Sisters and Deschutes County; and the C4C team served as official host for the 2016 candidates forum for the City of Sisters.
• Winter 2017. As of the beginning of 2017, more than 3,000 Sisters Country Civility Project 'Tool Cards' have been distributed throughout the region and well beyond. We've been told a few have even landed in places as far away as Ireland. With help from local sponsors, C4C hosted its inaugural "Soup & Civility" community-building and networking meal in tandem with our January 2017 information and skill-building session. Additionally, dozens of posters have been distributed; Civility Project adopters and partners continue to grow in number; and the newly elected C4C board members are excited to be working with local entities to help ensure that all voices are honored and that as many of those voices as possible take part in our important community conversations. While based in and focused on Sisters Country, we are pleased that we are continuing to export the ideals of civility, civic engagement, collaboration and creative problem-solving even beyond our local boundaries.