Thanksgiving Day, 2016 marked the 8th anniversary of the National Day of Listening, an initiative launched in 2008 to encourage families to ask questions, tell stories, and LISTEN to one another.
It’s a neat concept, which was born out of the Story Corps project, and which draws upon the fact that the United States is made up of so many diverse cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and those pieces are what make up the fabric of our country.
Story Corps began in October, 2003, with a “Story Booth” in Grand Central Terminal in New York City, and has grown into a weekly radio broadcast on National Public Radio’s (NPR) Morning Edition, as well as the publisher of five books comprised of the stories of our nation’s citizens.
Its mission is “to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world.”
This mission supports the idea that every person has a story, and every story matters.
Generations past would gather around the dinner table and share stories, which enabled elder generations to share family histories and experiences with younger ones. Because of the transient (and distracted) society of today, Story Corps uses its platform to “create an archive for future generations,” based on the stories of everyday individuals.
Although Thanksgiving Day marked the official National Day of Listening, the holiday season provides a perfect outlet for additional sharing. To make things easier (and more appealing for our tech savvy society), this year, Story Corps launched its mobile app (https://storycorps.me, or download from the iTunes store), creating a global platform for listening, connecting, and sharing stories of the human experience. The site also has suggestions for interview questions, how to get started, and more.
According to a 2015 StoryCorps Online Listener Survey, the projects have made a significant impact upon society, including:
Reminding listeners of their shared humanity Helping listeners see the value in everyone’s story and experience Encouraging listeners to become interested in thinking about how society could be improved And making listeners feel more positive about society (for the complete list, visit https://storycorps.org/about/) Windsong communities are designed to introduce people who share similar life experiences, and to encourage friendships among neighbors. Like StoryCorps, our front porches, wide sidewalks, and community clubhouses were created to encourage conversation and interaction – to share our stories.
Welcome to Windsong, Where Life’s A Breeze!