August 9, 2018 Newsletter


From Aspirations to Actions

Ashley Coone became trained in the Harwood practice four years ago. Today, she reflects on how she changed her programming to reflect the community’s aspirations and took action to improve the lives of students in her community. Ashley writes, “The actions we took inspired more action, engagement, and impact. This spring we partnered with the Boys & Girls Club of Sarasota County to oversee the new Arcadia Boys & Girls Club and enrolled 75 kids for summer learning in the newly restored facility. These are 75 students who have never participated in summer learning...We maxed out our enrollment numbers in less than two hours. We’ve already outgrown our space, the need is there, and it is great. We have given hope to many families for their futures, and they have faith that the Smith Brown Gym will one day be open to serve even more kids.”

Ashley added, “I can say with certainty that the skills and lessons I obtained through the Harwood training were directly impactful in moving this initiative forward. Thanks to turning outward, our message is clear and community driven. We want a better life for DeSoto students. We want to improve the 31% passage rate for third-grade reading scores. We want to work collaboratively with the people in our community and with key stakeholders to help our schools and county progress. Those are lofty goals that can’t be contained in the walls of one building or one organization.”

You can read more about Ashley’s story here. We want to congratulate her for using the Harwood practice to move her community forward.

How are you creating hope in your community?

How are you using Turning Outward to create positive, lasting change in your community? At the Harwood Institute, we believe community is a common enterprise and we know you have the ability to put your community on a more hopeful path. Email Colleen Bowman at to share how you are taking action towards hope.

If you haven’t been trained in the Harwood practice and are interested in the impact Turning Outward can have on your projects and programs, find out how you can attend a Lab or bring Harwood to your community!

Rich Harwood delivers direct and hopeful message in LaPorte, Indiana

President and Founder Rich Harwood recently gave a keynote address at the annual La Porte County Advisory Board Symposium. Harwood’s message, grounded in reality, reflected his 30 year career in civic engagement and public innovation: “You’ve got an opioid crisis. You’ve got too many kids on free and reduced lunch. You’ve got too much intergenerational poverty. None of these things are going to be ‘fixed’ overnight. That’s a fantasy. So the key is to say, ‘What’s the alternative?’ The alternative is, how do we get on a better trajectory, with growing momentum, and expanding confidence that we can do it? That means that we have to keep winning, and demonstrating that we can keep moving in the right direction. That is the name of the game right now.”

La Porte Circuit Court Judge Thomas Alevizos attended the Symposium, commenting that Harwood’s address “would open more dialogue so that we could really start to tackle as a community some of the underlying problems that endanger our youth.” Read more of La Porte’s story here.

Rich Harwood Speaking Tour: Finding Dignity, Hope, and Community in America Today

Now more than ever, Americans are searching for answers as the country confronts rampant polarization, hate speech and gridlock. It’s essential for us all to step back and think about how we can build an effective, affirming, counter-force to these divisive trends.

That’s why we’re excited to launch Rich Harwood’s Speaking Tour. We’ve been contacted by over 20 organizations who want to bring Rich to their cities and towns in order to inspire and mobilize their community. If you’re interested in hosting Rich and discussing clear steps to get on a more hopeful path than email Colleen Bowman at

We know how to move society forward. Become trained in the Harwood practice and learn how to mobilize your community.

Our training and coaching initiatives are data driven and we’ve demonstrated that our approach works for large and small organizations in urban and rural communities alike. We have an evaluation process and competency model to track progress. You can use Turning Outward to mobilize your community and get on a more hopeful path.

Public Innovator Lab for Libraries
October 9-11, 2018
St. Louis, MO

Can’t travel? Bring the lab to you. If you are interested in becoming trained in the Harwood practice of Turning Outward, click the REGISTER link to reserve your seat at our upcoming Virtual Public Innovators Lab. Feel free to share these opportunities with other colleagues in order to foster a larger community of practice within your organization.

Virtual Public Innovators Lab
Sept. 27 - Nov. 1, 2018

**Please note that on Monday (Aug. 13) and Tuesday (Aug. 14), our website will be under construction. It will be back up and running by Wednesday (Aug. 15)**