Taking Time To Listen & Learn

At Points of Light, we believe that taking action often requires us to educate ourselves about the issue first. In fact, harm can actually be done when well-meaning individuals or groups enter a situation without first being informed. The very best way you can find out what is needed — as well as honor the […]

Group of men talking
Photo by Henri Mathieu-Saint-Laurent: https://www.pexels.com/photo/men-in-corporate-attire-having-a-conversation-8349428/

At Points of Light, we believe that taking action often requires us to educate ourselves about the issue first. In fact, harm can actually be done when well-meaning individuals or groups enter a situation without first being informed. The very best way you can find out what is needed — as well as honor the lived experience of others — is to take the time to listen and learn before offering or implementing solutions.

You can do this by listening to experts in the field, the employees and volunteers serving on the ground and the community members impacted by the issues you want to address. As you listen, you will learn strategies for taking action and gain a deeper understanding, so you have the tools to launch effective, social issue campaigns.

How can you implement listening and learning into your everyday life? We’ve shared a few ways for you to explore.

  • Seek out resources like webinars, podcasts and seminars from reputable individuals, organizations and institutions who are subject matter experts on the issues and causes that matter to you. Use these opportunities to learn but also to practice your listening skills. Powerful listening involves listening to understand, not listening to reply.
  • Engage with Points of Light’s Listen. Learn. Act to End Racism initiative, in partnership with Morehouse College, designed to empower businesses, nonprofits and individuals to use their influence to fight against systemic racism. You can view recordings of past conversations, access additional educational resources and sign-up for future conversations on our website linked above.
  • Grow your professional knowledge as a nonprofit employee or volunteer on the Points of Light Community platform. Learn best practices, get insights from other professionals and experts and access our 2020 Points of Light Conference content.
  • Corporate social responsibility matters, and so we encourage CSR professionals to visit Points of Light’s Community for Employee Civic Engagement (or CECE, as we call it) to learn more about how some of the largest companies in the world are engaging their employees to create social good and support the communities where they live and work to tackle emerging challenges and reach those in greatest need.

The challenges we face have never been greater or more complex. When we take some time to thoughtfully explore them through listening and learning, we can activate more effectively in our communities and enhance our civic engagement thoughtfully. Transformative change endures with the help of every individual realizing their power to do good and getting involved.

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