Sparking connection and strengthening community
through intentional, compassionate conversation.

Are you ready to get people in your community talking?

The Forum’s Kindling Conversation Program was built to help you do just that. It provides themed toolkits, host support, and $250 of funding to Alaskans interested in hosting short, thoughtful community conversations tailored to connect people across difference and foster inclusive conversational spaces throughout the state.

Each toolkit has a focused conversation guide, a springboard to launch discussion, community agreements for the shared space, and participant surveys so that you’ll have everything you need to host. Explore funding conditions and our toolkits below, and don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.

>Read about the impact of Kindling Conversation in 2021.


Oliviah Franke
Conversation Programs Coordinator
[email protected]

Step 1. Apply to the Kindling Conversation Program. 

Step 2. Gather 5 or more people and have at least an hour long conversation using the tools provided. Scroll down to see the funding conditions. 

Step 3. Share a participant survey and brief reflection. 

>Get $250.

Our Toolkit Topics

Below is our current list of Kindling Conversation toolkits. Each displays a guiding question, a conversation guide, and a springboard as resources for you to dive into. Don't see the topic you're passionate about? Send us a suggestion! While we can only fund community conversations that utilize the Forum toolkits listed here, we're adding new topics all the time.


We Are Of: A Conversation on Race, Land, and Culture
Guiding Questions: How do our race and culture shape our relationship to the land? How does that shape the decisions we make about it?
Conversation Guide | Alaskan Perspectives on Land + Race


Forging Our Family
Guiding Question: How do we make our family, and who belongs in it?
Conversation Guide | The Crab Onesie Story

Journalism and Community
Guiding Question: What's possible when community and media connect?
Conversation Guide | Journalism Essays 

Homeless in the Great Land
Guiding Question: What do we expect from ourselves and our government when it comes to homelessness?
Conversation Guide | Homelessness Interviews


Salmonberries and Saag Aloo: Carrying Our Heritage
Guiding Question: How do we choose what heritage we carry with us?
Conversation Guide | Salmonberries and Saag Aloo Poem


Continuous: A Conversation on Gender and Culture
Guiding Question: How does culture shape our understanding of gender?
Conversation Guide | Continuous Photo Essay


Stories That Shape Us
Guiding Question: What stories from my past do I keep with me, and how do my cultures and heritage play into that?
Conversation Guide | Elder John Active Shares A Scary Story

Leadership in Alaska Series: Changing Times
Guiding Question: In times of rapid change, what guides us?
Conversation Guide | Magnetic North: Jacob Adams


Leadership in Alaska Series: Sense of Place
Guiding Question: How does where we're from influence how we lead?
Conversation GuideMagnetic North: Roy Madsen


Leadership in Alaska Series: Trailblazing
Guiding Question: When are we called to act without permission?
Conversation Guide | Magnetic North: Arliss Sturgulewski

Leadership in Alaska Series: Legacy
Guiding Question: What do we owe future generations?
Conversation Guide | Magnetic North: Clem Tillion


Leadership in Alaska Series: Mentorship
Guiding Question: How does our culture influence the way we teach and learn?
Conversation Guide | Magnetic North: Nathan Jackson



Leadership in Alaska Series: Flexibility
Guiding Question: Do we ever live up to our own expectations?
Conversation Guide | Magnetic North: Bill Sheffield



How It Works
We pay you to host your own community conversation using the tools we provide and walk you through the process.

All of our toolkits are free to use with attribution, but in order to receive funding, you need to apply. Individuals, tax-exempt organizations, and schools in Alaska are eligible to receive a $250 stipend to help defray the cost of hosting a conversation. Applications must be submitted at least 1 week prior to a scheduled event and recipients must host their community conversation within 3 months of receiving notification of funding.

Funding Conditions

  • The community conversation must be at least an hour long and have at least five participants (not including the host).
  • The host must credit the Alaska Humanities Forum in event promotion and during the event itself.
  • The host must submit a short final report within 3 weeks of the completion of the conversation. This final report must include attendance information, evaluation surveys completed by conversation participants, and a brief (<500 words) reflection by the facilitator. Photographs are encouraged but not required.