Reimagine Lab: Re-engaged
At the Foundation, we’ve always believed it’s possible to imagine a California free from domestic and family violence. Since we announced our new strategic direction in 2018, a focus on prevention has been at the heart of our work to break the cycle of domestic violence. We believe that we can disrupt multigenerational cycles of violence by promoting healing for those already experiencing violence while preventing it from taking root in younger generations. This new approach has led us to seek out different perspectives — on both the challenges Californians face and the solutions that might improve their lives — with a desire to reimagine what’s possible.
Over the past year, the Foundation team and I have been sharing our experiences with one way the Foundation has embraced this new approach: Reimagine Lab: Preventing cycles of violence, now and into the future. Designed to embody our values of possibility, equity, and partnership, Reimagine Lab created new space for 16 fellows — leaders from both inside and outside the domestic violence field — to come together to co-design solutions to help prevent family and domestic violence, now and into the future. We believed that if a diverse group of leaders passionate about ending domestic violence engaged in human-centered design, it would lead to new, outside-the-box ideas for preventing domestic and family violence.
Much of what we’ve shared about Reimagine Lab since then has been about exploration, experimentation, and openness to learning. This reflected our experience watching the Lab take shape; we didn’t prescribe what ideas the fellows should develop, or even which communities or populations they focused on. In May, we shared this journey in the Reimagine Lab learning report, which detailed our initial intentions and hopes for the Lab, outlined the process implemented by our partners at Gobee Group and the fellows, and shared the ideas that emerged. If you haven’t yet, I invite you to read the report to see how far we’ve come.
It’s been clear since day one of the Lab that the Foundation, Gobee Group, and the Reimagine Lab fellows share a commitment to ensuring that solutions are deeply rooted in the lived experiences of our communities.
That’s why today I am thrilled to announce that Reimagine Lab is being extended through November 2019. We are creating more time for fellows to test and further develop some of the Lab's most promising ideas into real-life, on-the-ground programs in communities where they’re most needed. First and foremost, the fellows will focus on prototyping their ideas. To do that, they will need meaningful time with the people they hope to serve (the “users” in human-centered design). The fellows, in teams, will work in deep partnership with communities — finding what works and uncovering and adjusting what doesn’t. The teams of fellows will prototype ideas focused on African-American boys and men, entrepreneurs of color, and youth. These projects prioritize prevention from the individual level all the way to community- and society-wide forces that perpetuate the cycles of violence.
I invite you to follow along to learn how the ideas develop through the prototyping stage. And together, we’ll keep reimagining what’s possible: a future that is not only free from domestic and family violence but one in which all families and communities thrive.