Photo: Paul Wilson

My story to this place


The aim is to explore a community's relationship with a place that is signifiant or meaningful to them, using analogue methods of visual storytelling to narrate journeys and encourage dialogue as a means to facilitate community agency and empowerment.



Large sheets of paper and markers, or a printer or photocopy machine to produce the templates, ideally at a large format so that participants can work collaboratively on the same tool.

Access to flat surfaces such as tables, indoors or outside. 




1. Identify a place that is significant in the community, and develop a simple visual tool that encourages storytelling around community members' relationships to this place. For example, draw the place and use icons of speech bubbles to capture stories and experiences, and thought bubbles to capture thoughts and feelings - 1h of preparation

2. Present the tool to the participants : explain that they will be asked to reflect on how they developed a connection with the place, or how they first discovered it, and that they will be able to write and draw their responses onto the tool - 10 min

3. Invite the participants to share autobiographical stories of their experiences of or in relation to the place. As each participant speaks, what they are sharing is documented using the though bubbles and speech bubbles. The facilitator can offer to lead this activity or to share the role with other participants while guiding the conversation or asking questions based on the participant's story - 15 min per participant

4. Once each participant has had the opportunity to tell their story, the facilitator reviews the range of stories and identifies themes that have emerged. Together, the group begins to build an idea of the place, its shared meanings, and where people's experiences are similar and / or different - 30 min