Sharing Our Gifts
We need our neighbors and community to stay healthy, produce jobs, raise our children, and care for those on the margin. Institutions and professional services have reached their limit of their ability to help us.......more
Sharing Our Gifts
We need our neighbors and community to stay healthy, produce jobs, raise our children, and care for those on the margin. Institutions and professional services have reached their limit of their ability to help us.
The consumer society tells us that we are insufficient and that we must purchase what we need from specialists and systems outside the community. We have become consumers and clients, not citizens and neighbors. John McKnight and Peter Block show that we have the capacity to find real and sustainable satisfaction right in our neighborhood and community.
This book reports on voluntary, self-organizing structures that focus on gifts and value hospitality, the welcoming of strangers. It shows how to reweave our social fabric, especially in our neighborhoods. In this way we collectively have enough to create a future that works for all.
“This book challenges the conventional wisdom about what you and I can do as citizens to shape our future. It offers concrete examples of what citizens can do and have done by drawing on resources in their families and communities.”
—David Mathews, President, Kettering Foundation
“This book is the basis for health and happiness in any society. A must-read.”
—Quentin Young, Chairman, Health and Medicine Policy Research Group, and former President, American Public Health Association
“‘What we need is here.’ That line from a Wendell Berry poem sums up the theme that runs through this vital and timely book. This book is a treasure. And it can help us recover the treasures hidden in plain sight within and among us, renewing ourselves and our democracy as we go.”
—Parker J. Palmer, founder of the Center for Courage and Renewal and author of A Hidden Wholeness, Let Your Life Speak, and The Courage to Teach
“Don’t wait for a politician, scientist, infomercial, or lottery ticket to come to the rescue. Read this powerful book and help yourself, your neighbors, and your planet to satisfying and sustainable solutions found only in community.”
—Jim Diers, former Director, Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, and author of Neighbor Power
John McKnight is emeritus professor of education and social policy at Northwestern University and is cofounder and codirector of the Asset-Based Community Development Institute. He is the coauthor of Building Communities from the Inside Out and the author of The Careless Society. John serves on the Board of Directors of numerous community organizations including the Gamaliel Foundation and The National Training and Information Center.
Peter Block is an author and consultant. His work is about empowerment, stewardship, chosen accountability, and the reconciliation of community. He’s the author of Flawless Consulting, Stewardship, The Answer to How is Yes, and Community.
The American Planning Association is an independent, not-for-profit educational organization with over 43,000 members that provides leadesrhip in the development of vital communities.
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