ImagineHub is a network of spaces and environments for “spirit-filled collisions” of diverse people where innovation, design thinking and entrepreneurship is nurtured, cultivated and harvested. ImagineHub provides a learning network, training programs and space solutions for churches that desire to reimagine and deploy their space as a means for improving economic empowerment in their neighborhood and community. The first ImagineHub sites launched in 2019 in under-utilized church spaces in central North Carolina. Our vision is to empower action-oriented dreamers for missional innovation in holy spaces, where intentional listening to God is cultivated to transform lives, congregations, communities and the world through innovative and collaborative missional experiments.
Working across multiple organizations as a collective impact initiative, the ImagineHub Steering Committee provides strategic guidance:
• Bishop Ken Carter of the Florida Conference of the UMC, and President of the UMC Council of Bishops from 2016 – 2020 • Rev. Amy Coles, Assistant to the Bishop of the Western NC Conference of the UMC • Dr. Dennis Carroll, retired Provost of High Point University • Louis Judge, Associate Vice President of Alamance Community College in entrepreneurship and economic development • Joel Gilland, CEO of Wesley Community Development in NC • J. Lee Lloyd, strategic consultant with extensive legal, entrepreneurship and public/private partnership experience • Leesa Sluder of Earth Equity Advisors, a socially responsible wealth management firm
a. Reimagine how historical church buildings in community-centric locations can be renovated and repurposed during weekdays, evenings and Saturdays. b. Accessible innovative spaces for training, mentoring, connecting, co-working and incubation for new people. c. Create transformative team environments where diverse people with new ideas can be nurtured from spark to launch. d. Build skills and capacity in innovation, design thinking and entrepreneurship for new people, impacting economic and community development. e. Develop cross-cultural humility for breaking down divisions of between people. f. Develop deep bonds of relationship and connections between the church and new diverse people in the community. g. Enable partnerships between church and community as innovative solutions are sought for the common civic good.
Current ImagineHub sites that are building an entrepreneurial ecosystem and sparking a movement of economic mobility in communities include:
Central Terrace UMC in Winston-Salem, NC
Christ UMC - Glenwood in Greensboro, NC
First UMC in Asheboro, NC
Woodmont UMC - Mission First in Reidsville, NC
Christ UMC in Drexel, NC
First UMC in Sanford, FL
Robbinsville UMC in Robbinsville, NC
Smith Grove UMC - The Bridge @ 197 Main in Cooleemee, NC