I've joined that group, as well as the Seven Kingdoms group; both seem to be working in different ways toward the goal of combining green priorities with employment - the Seven Kingdoms group also integrating those priorities into a holistic, slow-growth community development process. I'm excited about being involved in this, and am determined to help the groups develop this into a process of concrete, substantive changes, not just a series of lip-service meetings (as so many committees I've joined in the past have turned out to be). The fact that this is so new means that we can make it what we wish it to be, and I think that this is a group dedicated to real change! When do you have face-to-face meetings?
I know now that I can make a contribution as an information gathering person and locator of resource materials relevant to the group efforts online at this site, even if I am a few hundred miles away at this time.
I really debated with myself if it was necessary to make the drive to Bloomington to attend an event that was so community oriented when I was not part of that immediate community. I am so glad that the forces of passion overwhelmed the forces of reason in this case. At the Great Unleashing I was able to be immersed in a community of wonderful, caring, creative, intelligent, revved-up people who shared values I have had for years but never had much opportunity to engage my talents or interests. When I get de-energized by the wear and tear of life, I just go online and read about something the transition community is doing and it is like plugging into an electrical socket and re-energizing. So I am completely grateful for the opportunity to experience this group and will always carry this energy with me.
I also wanted to check out Bloomington as a possible future place to live. Wow, amazing town. This place is buzzing with creative energy, and talented, informed people. The university, the local growers group, the permaculture folks, all are great resources for local expertise, and the efforts of gov't/civic organizations around Peak Oil and sustainability are truly helpful in getting the ball rolling on such monumental tasks as food and energy security. Part of my decision to participate in the Unleashing was that if transition was going to happen anywhere, then there was a really good chance that it would be successful in Bloomington.
So thank you for all of your support and good work, and blessings on your future travels,
Thank you for the great work you are doing to get microloans and the financial process going for local entrepeneurs. I was immediately reminded of the article on the blog page from Rob Hoskins on the importance of social entrepeneurs in the transition process, and that this might be a significant part of the next step of the transition process.
"The social enterprise model is key here. As the chickens of last year’s economic turmoil come home to roost, purse strings tighten, both public and private, and grant dependent community initiatives will struggle. I am increasingly led to think that the social enterprise model offers the best of everything. .... My experience though is that these work best when they are the work of one or two key entrepreneurs. "
I was particularly struck by this insight from one of the biggest "community" organizers on the planet. As you were speaking at the Unleashing event, bells were going off in my head....yes, supporting individual efforts of local entrepeneurs is important, this was exactly what Rob Hoskins was talking about.
On a more personal note, I am sorry for not connecting with you at the Unleashing event. I am by nature more of a bookworm than a social activist and it is easy for me to hide in the corner at social functions. I also wanted to maintain a low profile because I am living out of the area, and wasn't quite sure how I was going to fit in and be helpful when I wouldn't be able to participate in the local startup groups.
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Who should I contact to find out more about specific activities and needs of the working groups I'm interested in? those groups are housing and local food, mostly.
should I just request to be a member of both or will there be conflict? thanks
Thank you for your gracious welcome. I am looking forward to participating in the Transition movement in Bloomington and especially the launch in April. I am very happy to see a Buddhist presence in Bloomington. My wife and I have sat with the Snowflower sangha here in Madison and we have been involved in various experiences with vipassana meditation for many years. I look forward to meeting you in the future.