An Urban-Design Success Story ~ An Interview with Constance Perenyi
April 27, 2013
Hosted by Marianna Cacciatore
Imagine a developer choosing to revive a declining mall by starting a local bookstore and creating a large, open community space with seating everywhere and a performance stage for people to enjoy shows for free. A chance few would take. But in the small community of Lake Forest Park, just north of Seattle, the risk paid off. Third Place Books collaborated with The Commons to create Third Place Commons a bustling community center of sorts, where people can come together, take a class, watch a performance, read a book, have a meal, or just people-watch. Their Farmers Market boasts boasts 7,000-8,000 shoppers each week. Parker Palmer, in his book Healing the Heart of Democracy, writes about projects like this that draw people out of their homes and into each other’s lives as a vital key to reclaiming our democracy. Join us as we meet Constance Perenyi, Executive Director of Third Place Commons, to talk about this urban-design success story—a Bread for the Journey of Seattle grant recipient.
Bread for the Journey Radio
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Today’s news is filled with stories that break our hearts. On Bread for the Journey Radio, you’ll hear stories that help mend it back together. Join Marianna Cacciatore as she interviews ordinary people who are doing extraordinary things, often small and always meaningful, to make our world a better place. Some, like Marianna, have suffered a tragedy, and, as a result, have created something beautiful to bring others healing. Others are helping women in crisis, making life better for children living in poverty, greening their neighborhood, or any number of creative things that make their community more beautiful, healthy, and connected. These women, men and young people inspire us to think about our own lives, and what we can do to make a difference in the world. Their stories become Bread for our Journey, inspiration and nourishment for a life well lived.
Most would agree Marianna Cacciatore’s life has been one well-lived. Through her work over 25 years with people who are working to bring about a better world, she has a unique vantage point from which to tell the stories we don’t generally hear in the media today. Marianna possesses the rare gift of presence, a deep listening which evokes in people the desire to tell their story.
Having suffered a childhood tragedy that spiraled downward into her teens and young adult years, she eventually turned things around and created a grief center that has brought healing to thousands of people. She recounts the full story in her book, Being There for Someone in Grief. Today, she serves as a Lifetime Emeritus Board Member of Tu Nidito in Tucson, Arizona, the parent agency for the organization she founded in 1988 called Children to Children, a Center for Children and Families in Grief.
Everyday Marianna meets ordinary people doing extraordinary things through her work as Executive Director of Bread for the Journey, a philanthropic organization with 20 locations nationally. Each volunteer-run chapter practices neighborhood philanthropy in their respective communities, helping everyday people bring their community-minded ideas to life. The Bread for the Journey vision is to nurture the seed of generosity in every human heart and Marianna’s life is a living expression of just that. Join her as she ignites the heart of generosity in you.