Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Transition Towns don't have to be woolly and homespun!

We had a meeting of the Transition Town core group last night which was a proper workshop about running a meeting.

I was lulled into the usual feeling of cosy warmth and welcome when the flipcharts came out! It was done really well and I learned a lot, especially about the fact that just because we are a sustainability group, that doesn't mean we can be wishy washy.

But running effective meetings, with goals, structure and engagement doesn't mean we lose sight of the essence of Transition Town which is that we involve the whole group, play to people's strengths and allow people to say no.

This was an interesting one because volunteers can get swamped and end up walking away.

Another interesting aspect was that you have a Mood Watcher..who keeps an eye on the feel of the meeting and if people are beginning to be glazed over or left out, then the MW pipes up! I thought this was a lovely idea and I was so grateful for the moment when the MW pointed out last night that we were losing the thread. Oh for one of those in some of the meetings I go to!

It's also about priorities. At various points in a meeting, you re-evaluate the time you have left and adjust your priorities so's you're not trying to do too much.

And then the one that is glorious to hear..you MUST finish on time.

I remember as a junior reporter going to council meetings where they would spend two minutes passing a £3m scheme and two hours discussing what toner to put in the printer. They needed a Mood Watcher!

Friday, 18 February 2011

The forests are still mine then!

That's really good news! But what's better news is that in our own little British way, we are just as rebellious as the Egyptians when we believe in something and anyone who thinks they can get their commercial little mitts on our forests have been brilliantly scuppered!

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

Tiny shoots of recovery

Not the economy, but us. It's been a tough winter with house renovations, work pressures and husband falling off ladder but yesterday, I spotted some snowdrops and the first shoots of daffodils.

This is why the environment is so important.

We need to know the world is going to renew itself. I need to know that the earth will re-emerge, just as green and beautiful as it ever was. I've been watching our little community of birds re-emerging looking for the food I put out. I was even pleased to see the magpie, although I haven't seen the one with the broken wing who amazed me with its ability to hop around using props to get from one place to another. Maybe it hasn't survived the winter.

Ok, this is waffling now.

I've been watching Richard Bilton's programme "Who gets the best jobs?" and then one called "Young, jobless and living at home" ( this is on I Player cos getting an aerial sorted in this dip we live in seems to be a mammoth task). So, the answer for our offspring is to work for nothing for at least a year, being supported by rich Daddy. Went wrong there then.
Work has to be worthwhile, you have to feel good about yourself and the job you are doing so what is the point if our youngsters aren't valued enough to pay them a living wage. Are we going backwards?