Get Social! and The CoOp Debut at 2011 Reunion

I have often been told how progressive AtlasFamily.Org and the Atlas family are.  I tend to agree.  *Smile*  We are definitely a family that thrives on being first and is brave enough to assume the task, even if it's doesn't end up successful.  There are many within our ranks who have displayed this character, so it seems to be genetic.  With this said, there are a couple of new ventures that I am excited to report to you.

Group photo.
2009 Atlas Family Reunion BBQ, Chicago, IL

The 2011 Reunion will signal the start of two unique programs geared towards getting more family involvement in the website, research project, and reunions and to tap into the talent base within the family.  Additionally, we hope these unique programs will create a movement where the value of family and family history is discovered and utilized to edify all generations within it.

Our oldest traceable ancestor, King Atlas, Sr., was born over 200 years ago.  The world at that time was quite a turbulent place for African Americans.  In order to survive, King, Sr. had a network of people (family and friends) who supported him in his daily life until freedom from slavery became a reality.

Today, Atlas family members reside in over 21 US states and a few countries outside of North America. Each of these places holds a family member that has a unique set of gifts, talents, education, or even a hobby. The amount of knowledge and expertise within each one of those family members is immense and if shared, could change an entire generation of people. 

The CoOp will leverage our expertise, talents, and experience to teach and support all generations in the family.  It is the vehicle by which we share what we know with who we're related to.  The way we will do this is by taking advantage of technology given our multitude of locations.

The 2011 reunion will be the first to feature workshops by family members who have volunteered their services to educate relatives.  The first two workshops are taxes and on increasing mobility and flexibility.  Future workshops can be held at reunions or online through webinars or through podcasts.

Hanging the reunion banner.
2009 Reunion Banquet, Chicago, IL
Family members in attendance will also be asked to fill out inventories to add to the skills database which was created in 2010.  The intention is that when a family member has a question about a specific subject area (perhaps for education or general purposes), they can reach out to The CoOp to see if a family member is experienced in that area.  The CoOp will then connect the two family members.

Get Social! Initiative

The top three reasons why family members cannot attend reunions are:
  1. They cannot afford it
  2. They cannot take time off of work
  3. They have family commitments that prohibit them from going
Left: Nora (Scott) McMillan, Center:  Marvaleen Atlas,
Right:  Joseph Scott, Jr.
2009 Atlas Family Reunion Banquet, Chicago, IL
These are all valid reasons for not attending a reunion. On the other hand, technology currently provides a way for family members to "be" at the reunion virtually.

Family members in attendance at the 2011 Reunion are encouraged for the first time utilize social networking (Facebook, Twitter), YouTube, Skype, and this blog to capture their reunion experiences to share with family members who cannot attend.  What's so cool about this is that there isn't generational divide in the use of these technologies in the family, so the experiences of both young and old can be shared.

There will be three guest bloggers this coming week as well.  I'm really excited about this.  They've all been charged to capture the experience from their perspective so that it can be shared with the family and the world. 

So, what do you think of all this?  I'd love to hear your feedback!


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