Care & support at SRCCON events
The spirit of generosity that animates this community is a big part of what led to SRCCON. We heard again and again that folks wanted to have space to share with and support one another. We expect some thought-provoking talks, intriguing sessions, and uplifting conversations during our three days together, so we wanted to share some thoughts about how we’re creating the space for those and the support we can offer to one another.
As you’re getting settled into SRCCON this week, check out our Preparing for SRCCON page, for details about how to access SRCCON online, our virtual registration booth, and more. Here we’ve adapted a guide for care and support we’ve used for recent in-person events.
Inviting others into your conversation
When telling us why you wanted to come to this event, many of you told us you wanted to meet others who were also working on making change in your newsrooms and teams.
- Say hi! We are here to meet and learn from one another. It’s a little different jumping into conversation online than in person, but we’ve setup the conference Slack to help make it easier to meet people interested in similar things as you, or even to join a #virtual-coffee 1-on-1 meetup.
- Keep space open for others to join. In-person, we like to follow the pac man rule. Digitally, we can support each other by following the same spirit. Especially with a video chat setup, it can be hard to get a word in. If you see someone else trying to get a word in, help make sure they get a chance to speak. If you see someone looking for help in Slack, chime in if you know the answer.
- If you want to lead, lead! There’s so many ways to start conversations at SRCCON, from spinning up a Slack channel to putting a call out about doing a Netflix party together. If you want to do something (or adjust something—our settings default to adjustable), please do.
- Lurking is also welcome. We all have busy phases when we can’t participate actively, or when we just feel shy. That’s ok. It’s totally ok to read docs or catch up on the Slack chat without chiming in. There’s many modes of participation at SRCCON this year, do what works for you at the moment.
Taking care of yourself
- “Put on your mask first before assisting others.” It’s advice many of us may set aside in our daily life. For these two days, we want you to be able to put yourself and your needs first.
- Listen to yourself. We’ve created a schedule with room for breaks and to step away if you need to. If you’re body is telling you something, you can find that sustenance, breath mint, or more. We encourage you to listen to other needs you may have, too. Feeling an urge to stretch? Feeling your neck tense up? Want to go for an impromptu walk? Do it. You can mute your video on a Zoom call and go get some water, no problem!
- You have support, we are here for you. You’re likely to find folks who are facing similar challenges and are available to strategize or distract, if that’s what you need. You can lean on this community and network. You are not in this work alone. If you need someone to talk to, the support team is here for anyone who—for any reason—would like to take a moment to process something that comes up anytime during our program.
Taking care of each other
We hope you’re feeling an openness to taking care of your own needs as the priority here. We hope with your own feeling of care and nourishment, that will also open up space for us to take care of each other as well.
- Hear others. None of us knows everything, but together we know a lot. We’ve got a wonderful opportunity over these days to listen and learn from one another. Listen for what other participants are expressing within what they are saying. Listening is a chance to hear invitations and boundaries that allow us to better connect with one another.
- Respect boundaries. We will be dealing with difficult topics, and that means we need to be more intentional than ever to make sure everyone is safe and comfortable so we may all bring out our true and best selves. If someone wants or needs to stop a line of conversation, respect their wishes.
- Working toward justice, together. Part of how we will make the changes necessary in our news organizations is by changing how we relate to each other, being intentional and actively anti-racist. That happens in a variety of ways, from respecting pronouns to interogating stereotypes.
- We all have support. The entire event is backed by our code of conduct and safety plan. It helps us take care of each other and respond when necessary.
Thank you to the AdaCampToolkit for conference self-care, the Open Heroines Slack Rules of Engagement, and to the Facilitation for Liberation Network Gathering for inspiration and resources for this page.