20 Comments on “Make Shift Coffee House Comments”

  1. Make Shift Coffee House Facilitator Training was an interactive and fun experience!

    Imagine spending the day with like-minded people passionate about bringing courageous conversations into their communities. Craig Freshley teaches us how to do that in a most inspiring way. I highly recommend this training if you are interested in any type of facilitation. Thank you for sharing your valuable skills, and for making it fun!

  2. Check out Make Shift Coffee House: it’s a timely and valuable model for helping people feel welcome and understood in today’s difficult conversations. Craig is a master at building a sense of trust and helping ensure that all voices are heard.

  3. The Make Shift Training is valuable. It helped me think of effective ways to respond to someone who states something with which I don’t agree. My words need to keep the conversation going, in order for both participants to learn. My response should not help the conversation end with anger and further misunderstanding. The training was well done by Craig.

  4. The MSCH training I took last month opened my eyes (and ears) to the power of true stories to create connection across difference. Craig breaks the facilitation process down in clear steps, including pitfalls to avoid, and he has developed a terrific framework that can appeal to a wide variety of facilitators. I’m impressed too, by his eagerness to get feedback and incorporate suggestions from participants. I highly recommend this evolving training as I am very inspired to help strengthen connection and authenticity in our stratified community, and Craig’s training gives me the tools to proceed.

  5. Even though as a host, I only attended through lunch, the Make Shift training was a great opportunity to hear and learn from others’ experiences, with much food for thought from lessons learned and about ideas for planning possible events in the future. Listening to and talking with people from other places also reminded me that although we may not be completely like-minded, we all agree that understanding each other’s point of view is crucial to our civil society.

  6. As part of the Make Shift Coffee House facilitator training on 1/15/20 I was impressed with the professionalism of Craig and his staff, their genuine caring, and the overall organization of the event. I was grateful for the enthusiasm, energy and engagement of every one of the participants in the training. I left hopeful and uplifted by the possibilities and potential for building community connections that this training provided.

  7. THX! Craig for yur recent generosity to us to allow us to do our community work to the needy..I look forwd very much to attending yur events & being a conscious participant as both listener and commentor? TY for the fantastic, educational and much needed format, forum and food for thought magnet MSCH always is. We all need more of yur immense efforts as institution, insights and public leadership foundation you provide. Let us help out in any way? TY!

  8. Craig, you are doing something that is great for this country. Democracy is all about direction. There are three possible directions a democracy can take; your way; my way; or our way. As a country we have forgotten the joy and pride of going OUR way. Your work is showing that our way can still be chosen. Thank you for your positive effect on our society.

  9. This training opportunity and the chance to help our community are wonderful. I can’t make the January training date so I’m really hoping there will be another one soon. I know it’s going to be fantastic!

  10. Congratulations on a great idea gaining well deserved recognition! Yay for Friends of Maine State Libraries Foundation for providing a conduit for supporting this work. Your inspire us all Craig, thank you!

  11. Hi Craig:

    You put on another excellent event last night in Yarmouth and I enjoyed it a lot.

    It is really good to hear different views and you encourage so nicely the expression of those views in a sincere but non-aggressive way so that we can listen to each other openly.

    I loved your idea of having us leave our own table and seek out someone we had heard speak and engage with that person—perhaps because we agreed or perhaps because we disagreed but even then in a spirit of open friendly inquiry.

    To that point I approached Laura Ligouri and asked her for more about her experience as a waitress in North Carolina and also for feedback on my comments about the label racist and we had a great conversation. She said she agreed with me 40% and disagreed with me 60%. I listened carefully to everything she said. I mentioned that I had just had a great conversation with my daughter, who is a counselor in North Carolina and who recommended to me the book The Righteous Mind by David Haidt. Laura knew of the book and likes it a lot.

    Anyway I think your idea of having some time to go and seek out someone who made a comment is excellent.

    Thank you again, Craig, for putting on these coffeehouses. A great way to hear and interact with people of diverse perspectives.

    Richard Hobby

  12. Thanks Sydney! Thanks Joe!
    Love both of your recent comments.
    And I hope it’s okay to tell the world that you are both recent college graduates.
    We love that younger people are finding and appreciating Make Shift Coffee Houses!

  13. I’ve been to between 5-10 Make Shift Coffee House facilitations in the past 2 years. Over time and through long-term conversations with people I’ve met there, some of my burning questions about the political divide have been answered. But more often than answers, and especially when I bring friends, I leave with an important question: “What’s next? How can we multiply the positive impact this facilitation has had on us, by acting on what we’ve learned and sharing it with others?” I’m so proud to see Make Shift Coffee House opening up new outlets for people to take its potential further, like the Make Shift community project in Yarmouth that will begin to measure the long term impact this can have. Personally, attending many events over time has calmed some of my political anxiety (which means a lot coming from someone who works in politics every day), made me a better listener, and given me concrete tools to use in difficult conversations. I’m so excited to see where it goes!

  14. Make Shift Coffee House’s trademark “Listen to Understand” is of paramount importance in our world of strongly diverging political identities. Not often are we asked to take a step back, try as best we can to suspend our biases, and really try to understand those with whom we disagree. Experiencing this at the multiple Make shift Coffee House events I’ve attended has been a transformational political experience. If this was the default mode for our politics, a brighter future would certainly materialize.

  15. I think the May 21 session was positive and proved adults can get together, share some thoughts, and behave civilly. However, I would urge the organizers to more tightly manage the sessions because the first people who speak tend to set the direction of the session with their comments, regardless of the appropriate “weight” of the topic they introduce should be given. Some people know this about the dynamics of group meetings and purposefully assert themselves early in order to direct the conversation on topics important to them. One reason why these sessions can be civil is that there is no testing of ideas or the level of detail or depth. People are free to make broad, superficial policy statements. The devil is always in the details and where conflict emerges. People ought to be asked to explain their position in terms of implementation and impacts. If, for example, they are advocating for something that costs money, they should be asked to explain who pays and why they think their friends and neighbors ought to be spending their money on the cause, which other programs should be discontinued to make room for their more important public policy interests, which type of governmental origination would be responsible (e.g. federal, state, county, municipality) etc.

  16. This is a new website so today starts a new series of comments.
    Old comments are archived above.
    Thank you for commenting on specific events or on any aspect of our work at Make Shift Coffee House!

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