किस्से Connection started as Aagaaz’s attempt to get people interested in each other’s stories. It opened up a platform for the community at Khirkee, to engage with one another in a unique manner. We have now had multiple events, an increasing number of books and a growing number of readers. With support and space from KHOJ International Artists Association, we are happy to share the evolving journey of these events.
Our objective has always been to facilitate one-on-one conversations between two people- one being the book and the other being the reader. The readers listen to small excerpts of the books and then let their curiosity guide them. They ask the book questions and gradually unpack the details of the personal experiences. These often lead to moments of new discoveries and resonance.
Recently, we have been trying different methods of inviting people for this event. A song had been created and our organizing team went into the community to capture people’s attention. This brought in a different flavor to the process and probed us to be more innovative. We are feeling very enthusiastic about trying new ideas.
Additionally, we discovered this extremely interesting recharge shop that became our major hub for publicity. The shop belongs to Swati who is working on getting different communities in Khirkee to consume each other’s media. This unique exchange portal has already opened up possibilities of community engagement and we are encouraged and supported by its existence.
The number of readers from the local community is gradually increasing and a clear association has been made between किस्से Connection and KHOJ. Sometimes it’s interesting to just look up and see the visitors at KHOJ, who come there to work or get coffee and effortlessly become inquisitive observers of a peculiar process.
किस्से Connection has become an experiment of sorts that brings value in its own unique way. Our friend Hector attends the events to study the fascinating nature of how stories connect people. In addition to that, our core group of adolescents from Nizamuddin has also found a new avenue to learn about stories, organizing and facilitation.
We are on a mission to create bridges, opportunities and engagements for the local community. Our design is therefore flexible and perpetually evolving. We have now started using translators in our sessions to ensure that language doesn’t become a limiting barrier. In the future, we look forward to doing this in more visible and open spaces to make it more accessible. We are also considering possibilities of creating visual depictions of excerpts and more elaborate orientations that would allow our readers to connect effortlessly.