Nothing warms up the winter like an impassioned Common Ground gathering and our Winter Delegates Assembly was no exception. The meeting we held at Mount Mary proved once again that we have some major victories to be proud of and some important work ahead of us.
Led by Margaret Crowley of the OK Group and Reverend Alexis Twito of Capitol Drive Lutheran Church, we reported on progress towards our current goals.
Goal: To hold 1,000 face-to-face, one-on-one relational meetings.
Progress: 102 members have been trained and will conduct 1,373 meetings!
Goal: Raise our Friends of Common Ground fundraising goal of $100,000.
Progress: So far we have 179 commitments totaling $85,031 and need to raise the rest!
Goal: Recruit 10 new member organizations.
Progress: We’re working hard in all four counties. Rustin Borkin has held over 400 relational meetings in the suburban and rural areas. We have 8 new member units. Five were introduced in October and the three new ones are:
- Adullam Outreach
- The James Company
- Washington County for Common Ground
We also welcomed visiting guests, including:
- All Saints Cathedral, Milwaukee
- Christ Church Episcopal, Whitefish Bay
- Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative
- Dane County United, our sister organization in Madison
- Mt Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church, Milwaukee
- Rockford United
- St John Vianney Catholic Church, Brookfield
- St Christopher’s Episcopal Church, River Hills
- West Allis First United Methodist
- WI Education Association Council, Milwaukee
Pastor Bobby Sinclair introduced our Discovery in Groups (DIG) Sessions, with personal stories of community issues told by Timmeco Hopton-Fells of Mt Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church, Suburban Rural Organizer, Rusty Borkin, and Yosef Meadows of Congregation Beth Jehudah.
What’s a DIG? DIG (Discovery in Groups) Sessions are informal gatherings that help us determine which issues Common Ground should take on next. In the weeks ahead, Common Ground plans to hold at least 100 such DIG sessions, as Margaret pointed out.
If our first DIG is any indication, Common Ground will learn a lot about what concerns we should focus on next. Some of the things we heard groups talk about were young adult education, hidden poverty, senior isolation, lack of affordable housing, and more. There is no shortage of issues facing our area, but it feels great to bring them to the table so we can begin to act.
Finally, Pastor Twito led a member organization headcount as to how many attendees each could commit to holding future DIG sessions in February and March. We left with 207 DIGs! Way to over-deliver Common Ground!!