About Project

MN Idea Open LogoEach year, the Minnesota Philanthropy Partners holds the “MN Idea Open”, a statewide brainstorming contest to see who can come up with the best solution to pressing problems. The 2012 challenge was about getting to know people of different faiths, cultures, and backgrounds.

Taking a page from the Amish, Extreme Home Makeover, and Habitat for Humanity, Jim came up with ‘Multicultural Barn Raising’. What if we expanded the idea of a typical barn raising to building new playgrounds, a new roof for a tornado victim, or a school extension, still completed in a short time window (a long weekend), while placing people of different cultures to work alongside each other? Conversations and relationships with happen organically as we all work on a community project. Think Extreme Home Makeover, broaden it beyond homes, and add a multicultural element.

Out of 600 entries, Jim’s idea won by popular vote.

Minnesota Philanthropy Partners

Design a creative way to break down silos between different races, religions, and creeds so people of diverse backgrounds get to know each other.

Innovation, creative thinking, design thinking, strategizing, imagination, vision.