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Sharing stories about the past is crucial to a nation’s post-conflict recovery and encourages the well-being of its survivors, citizens, and the next generation.

WHAT IS A STORY FOR HOPE?

A personal story about the past that is truthful and intended to be helpful, one which includes non-violent examples of how individuals have survived using their strengths and cultural values,

WHAT STORIES ARE TOLD?

In native language, elders are encouraged to volunteer stories to young people about the personal pasts. The stories can be about family, community, refugee life, or Rwandan culture, and about any era in the past.

Youth are invited to ask questions that help them understand more about the past. Many wish to know about their families during the periods of ethnic strife, and violence.

Facilitators are trained to ask what qualities of heart, mind, and spirit sustained their surviving elders, then and now? What has helped them to work against the effects of both conflict and poverty on their day to day lives? What within Rwandan culture taught them about how to best live, and love?


WHAT HAPPENS DURING STORYTELLING?

In information sessions, youth are encouraged to prepare questions for their elders, guardians, or mentors, while elders are instructed in why it’s important to tell important stories from the past, including those which inspire hope.

At the scheduled private recording session, participants are briefed again, then a facilitator helps tell stories and ask questions, for as long as an hour. The facilitator also audio records the session.

Each pair is debriefed after the session and can ask for extra support, if needed, by a trained counselor.

Every person leaves with a CD of the conversation, a CD player, and a framed photo. All are invited to have their stories posted on an archival public Website. Participants are reimbursed for transport, and followed up three, six, and/or nine months later.

ARTICLE PUBLISHED

SEPTEMBER 2014 - Archival Science 14 (Nos. 3-4, 2014): 275-306. Available here

FOUNDER PASICK WINS PRESTIGIOUS PURPOSE FELLOW PRIZE

OCTOBER 2014 - Founder and Director Patricia Pasick, Ph.D. has been honored as a 2014 Purpose Prize Fellow which recognizes “outstanding social innovators over aged 60 who are working to change the world by finding solutions to challenging social problems.“
http://www.encore.org/patricia-pasick