By: Stephanie Fisher—
Muncie, IN—Five years ago, The Facing Project was founded in Muncie, Indiana, by writers Kelsey Timmerman and J.R. Jamison. What started out as a one-off project, telling the stories of people in Muncie facing poverty, has now grown into a national nonprofit that has spread into 100 communities across the country. On November 20th, the organization will celebrate its 501(c)(3) status and the opening of its national headquarters in Muncie.
The Facing Project provides coaching, a model, and an extensive toolkit for nonprofits, colleges/universities, and community leaders. The organization leading the project picks a theme and then enlists a team of writers to be paired one-on-one with citizens who are facing life circumstances that deserve to be shared. The writers use their talents to take on the voice and persona of their subjects and write as if they were them—in the first person—bringing to life a voice that has been silenced, while keeping the anonymity of the subjects. Each project produces a book, community theatre and monologues, and community conversation circles and action planning based on the overall narrative. Past projects have focused on sex trafficking, disabilities, racism, depression, hunger, and homelessness, just to name a few. Many projects spark action for change in communities—sleeping bags for the homeless, leveraged dollars for nonprofits, and advocates for policy development or change.
By next spring, The Facing Project will have collected 1,200 stories, engaged 7,500 volunteers, and distributed 75,000 books throughout communities. In Muncie alone, The Facing Project has reached 20,000 community members, and nationally the organization has reached over 200,000 individuals. The Facing Project has been recognized by The Huffington Post, Harlem World Magazine, and Soul Train as one of three oral history projects that every community should know about.
About the Event:
WHEN: Sunday, November 20th, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m.
WHERE: Cornerstone Center for the Arts
WHAT: Celebration of five years of connecting people through stories to strengthen communities and The Facing Project’s new status as an official 501(c)(3) nonprofit. The event will include:
- A chance to meet The Facing Project founders, Kelsey Timmerman & J.R. Jamison
- Entertainment from Married Folk
- Drinks from The Guardian Brewery and food from The Downtown Farm Stand
- Tour of The Facing Project’s new offices in Madjax, Muncie’s first Maker’s Hub
Casual attire requested. Tickets can be purchased for $30.00 online at www.classy.org/FacingLaunch or at the door the day of the event by check or credit card.
To learn more about The Facing Project, visit them online at www.facingproject.com.