Section 4
Taking Philanthropic Action
SPACE ODYSSEY – A Decade In The Future
35 minutes
  • Balloons for each participant
  • Permanent markers to write on the balloons
  • String, yarn, ribbon, masking tape
  • Music
Physical Setting
Large room with space for small groups to meet
  • 5 minutes for an introduction
  • 10 minutes for the Vision of the Future activity
  • 15 minutes for processing
  • 5 minutes for the application

This activity asks the participants to envision what their community and/or organization might look like in the future. While it has a serious objective, the activity makes it fun!


  • To have participants look at how they could be involved in giving and serving in their community
  • To have participants look at what they can give to make the future of their organization/community a reality.


The facilitator sets the mood by having spaced-theme or futuristic music in the background. Soundtracks from Star Wars/Star Trek movies might be appropriate.

The facilitator asks the participants to close their eyes and asks the following questions, giving the participants time to think about each one before moving on to the next one.

  1. What will your community look like ten years from now?
  2. What will people be doing?
  3. What will education, recreation, transportation and work be like?
  4. How might families, schools, organizations, and congregations be different?
  5. How might people be involved in service and giving?
  6. How old will you be in ten years?

Each person is given 3-5 balloons and a permanent marker. Facilitator asks them to blow up the balloons and tie a knot in the end, then tell the participants to draw pictures, symbols or words on their balloon that represent their vision for their community in ten years.


The facilitator asks the participants to share one or two things about their community vision with the group. Each of these might be written on a flipchart. Participants spend some time reflecting on the visions and considering any additional items to add to the vision.

Ask them to tie their balloons together in pairs. They then are to bring the pairs and tie them close together in a bunch to a piece of string, yarn, or ribbon. The idea is to have it look like a very colorful “space station” when the balloons are all tied together. You can use your imagination here.

Divide the participants into groups of 4 or 5. Ask each person to discuss the following questions in their small group.

  1. How can young people help make this ‘future vision” a reality? What part can they play in making it happen?
  2. What attitudes do people need to have to make it a reality?
  3. What are some of the obstacles that need to be overcome to have this future vision come to be?

After each person has had time to share in response to the questions in small group, facilitator might want to ask for a few responses from the groups which give an overview of what was discussed.