April Doner

April Doner lives and works as a Roving Illustrator, telling stories of community thriving, abundance, and people-powered change through writing, photography and art. Originally from the wave-kissed east coast of Florida, April has found her way to Indianapolis, IN to join community-based innovators De'Amon Harges and Anne Mitchell at Tesserae Learning. April is especially passionate about revealing and engaging the strengths of people, groups and neighborhoods who have been marginalized by labels of deficiency, and in working to redirect channels of faith and funding from deficiency-based approaches and into the lives of the "positive deviants"--the unseen and under-celebrated organizers, story-tellers, healers, artists and others who are actively making changes in their communities and neighborhoods. Through Tesserae and Aprilart Studios, she offers services to strengthen community including documentation, facilitation, trainings, workshops and consulting in Asset-Based-Community Development, Theory U and other practices, as well as a full range of artistic services. April is a Fellow with the Asset-Based Community Development Institute and a Steward of ABCD in Action.
8 POSTS

Wednesday at Broadway: Tacos, Art, Abundance

Being a freelance has unusual perks — like being able to choose your office space for the day on a whim. Lately, I’ve been trying to plant myself in “third places” — spots that lend themselves to interaction among community...

Harnessing and Harvesting “The Ignorant Perfection of Ordinary People”

Last week, I drove with friends and colleagues from Indianapolis to Cincinnati to attend the three-day Connecting4Community (“C4C”) conference, “a powerful gathering of master and apprentice change agents and social entrepreneurs across sectors and communities, from around the world.” I came for...

The Village Connectors Project

Anna D’Aste makes and teaches ceramic art on 12th Street in the ""Village of the Arts" in Bradenton, FL. She  was part of the original group of artists who moved into the neighborhood 13 years ago to start the Village. When...

A World That Welcomes People for Their Gifts

From July 7 – 12, I had the opportunity to attend the Toronto Summer Institute on Inclusion, Diversity and Community for the first time.  I can easily say that it was life-changing experience. The Institute is a gathering of people...

HoodRoving in G-Park: Chocolate, Radio, Tango, Change

This is an excerpt from April's piece that ran in This Week in Sarasota on June 25, 2012. For the complete story plus lots more photos and links to videoclips, sources and related material, go to http://www.thisweekinsarasota.com/hoodroving-in-g-park-chocolate-radio-tango-change   We hear week-in and week-out...

A Love Letter to My Neighborhood

This is the complete text and selected photos from April's piece that ran in This Week in Sarasota on Valentine's Day. For the complete picture gallery go to http://www.thisweekinsarasota.com/neighborhood-love-letter-dear-gillespie-park/.     Ten Things I Love About You: A Love Letter to Gillespie Park   Dear Gillespie...

Leading from the Back and Front…Can It Be Done?

Since October, I've been working to organize a grassroots creative-economy movement in my town, yet finding myself necessary in the "front" as one of the founders of an Arts Collective (Uprise Art Collective). In a nutshell, I'm struggling with the...

Rekindling Responsibility for Our Elders

Today my dad called while I was busy at work to tell me that he had bought a house. This is big news for two reasons — one, he hasn't had a house in I think about 8 years, living as...