The following has been adapted from the On the Table® Greater Akron website, onthetableakron.com.
On the Table is a one-of-a-kind initiative, organized by Akron Community Foundation, where thousands of diverse residents from all walks of life and socio-economic backgrounds gather to share a meal and discuss meaningful ideas to strengthen our community. It’s an opportunity to shape our region into a strong, vibrant, safe and dynamic place to live and work.
Summit Education Initiative (SEI), an On the Table Greater Akron Super Host, will host a community conversation for its Ready High School Network and guests from Summit County high schools during a breakfast event on Tuesday, Oct. 3.
Anyone who lives, works, worships or attends school in Summit County/Greater Akron is invited to host a mealtime conversation on the day of the event. Conversations may be hosted in homes, restaurants, coffee shops, schools, libraries, offices, parks, places of worship and other community locations. They can be formal or informal, sit-down, picnic, brown bag or potluck. They may happen over breakfast, coffee, lunch, dinner, dessert or a snack – it’s entirely up to the host.
Akron Community Foundation knows that big ideas can spring from small conversations and that people invest in what they help create. While there is no “quick fix” to the many issues facing any community, progress can result from residents, organizations, businesses, foundations and government agencies sharing ideas and working together. Our community-wide mealtime conversations will generate new ideas, inspire bold solutions, and provide opportunities for investment.
This initiative will give Akron Community Foundations and its partners, including SEI, the opportunity to engage and listen to our neighbors about the priorities and aspirations of our region. After Oct. 3, participants will be invited to complete a short email or paper survey about the big ideas, themes and priorities that were discussed in their gatherings. From these responses, Akron Community Foundation will share a report highlighting the ideas, conversations and outcomes that emerge from On the Table Greater Akron. This data will inform the foundation’s proactive community investment.
The Chicago Community Trust has implemented On the Table for three years and the Miami Foundation sponsored it last year; both communities are planning to continue their involvement in 2017. Akron Community Foundation is one of 10 community foundations across the U.S. replicating the On the Table initiative this year with funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.