Below is a brief description of the maac program to give you a sense of what it's like and how it can be adapted to suit your needs. We train professionals working with diverse populations (in schools, prisons, hospitals, and other social services) and adapt it accordingly.
week 1: Introduction
This week is an introduction to the program followed by a strengths-based exercise to identify individual interests and strengths. Group discussion about different themes to trigger ideas and possible actions for change. This week is designed to plant the seed that everyone can do something that is useful and interesting.
week 2: idea generation
This week is designed for generating different ideas in a brainstorming session. In groups of 4 with sets of post-its, people try to come up with as many ideas as possible, based on themes presented in previous session.
week 3: idea selection
In groups of two, people choose three ideas from the ideas generated as a group that they may be interested in pursuing. Each pair then makes a pitch for why it will make a difference. This transforms the "it's only a drop in the ocean" feeling to a "wow, if we all recycled one plastic cup a day, it really makes a difference!"
week 4: Destination postcard
Each person chooses one idea to work on. They write a destination postcard of what situation will look like when they’ve succeeded. Key for goal setting, this will motivate them and help keep them on path.
WEEK 5 : Action plan
Using goal-setting tools, each person constructs a step-by-step action plan, with specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and timely goals. This can also be done using mind-maps or other worksheets (all provided).
Week 6: communication
People write a 3-4 sentence description of their project. They identify 2 media sources (local newspaper, local radio station) and find two contact addresses. They send their description to the contact addresses. This is all provided on worksheets to make the steps easier.
Week 7: GO!
Depending on the group and the projects, this week can be extended to several weeks to carry out the steps described in the residents' action plans.
Week 8: Future steps
Group exchange on where everyone is in their projects and where they will go in the near future. This is also a time for exchange on what the program has brought them.