How a Bridge Sponsored Collaboration Became a Nationwide Success

Posted by on February 08, 2019 at 2:48 PM

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Back in 2017, the Bridge Alliance distributed $525,000 in project grants to collaborative projects by two or more member organizations. One of these projects was a joint effort by The Village Square and 92Y to “[c]reate a new model for Americans of different backgrounds and beliefs to come together in face-to-face conversations.” That model is now known as Ben Franklin Circles.

Since that time, the project has expanded massively. There are now 325 Circles either running or in formation in 32 states. Fifteen were added this past November alone, and 92Y has informed us that additional Circles will be coming to Georgia and Indiana in February. Additionally, the feedback from these Circles has been overwhelmingly positive, with 100%(!) of people surveyed reporting a positive experience and 80% saying that the Circles helped build the community.

In other news, the Congressional Management Foundation -- with the help of former and current congressional staffers -- drafted a Job Description for a Member of Congress. The report “groups Members' current duties into seven main functions and outlines their primary responsibilities in each: Representation, Legislation, Investigation/Oversight, Management, Politics, Collaboration, and Leadership.” This report provides an excellent, easy-to-read overview of what it means to be a member of Congress.

Finally, we wanted to give a quick shout-out to friend-of-the-movement Rob Stein, who wrote an article on the problems facing our country and the many organizations (including many Bridge Alliance members) trying to address those problems. Also, be sure to sign up for the NCDD's call next week, where they will discuss the upcoming All-America City Award.

As always, thank you for your support.


Bridge Alliance Education Fund


Bridge Alliance Members in the News:

FairVote - Forbes - Should Every Election Day be a Holiday?

Better Angels - The Federalist - How To Improve The State Of Our Viciously Polarized Union

POGO; R Street Institute - RollCall - Groups call for House Intel to open initial meeting