So, farewell then 2016.

During 2016 the forces of division have grown much stronger but they have not won and they will not prevail. There are plenty of reasons to be positive…

We are all reasons to be positive. Whether we like it or not,  no one of us is an island,  all our choices and decisions affect each other, we are one.  We will build a better world in 2017 if we are positive, engage with our creative potential and find ways to build our capabilities together.  It will not be easy, but it will be worth it. 

The challenge is clear – in a society characterised by inequality far too many  of us have been dis-engaged and left without the capability to fulfil our potential.   When the opportunities for engagement are so limited it should be no surprise if many of us choose  to use our one vote to protest. Nor should we be surprised that we’ve been trumped by the return of the big lie

Whilst it is easy to understand the appeal of simple slogans and comforting certainties they can bring no lasting solutions.  Nor are protests and petitions any substitute for genuine engagement,  modern life is  complex and nuanced. There no simple answers, but then that is the beauty of life.

In 2017 we don’t need answers, we need questions and we need creativity. We need leaders who are brave enough to tell us that they don’t know and are open enough to engage us in all in exploring life’s questions together. 

Our individual and collective challenge is to find more effective ways to engage with our creative potential.  

It will not be easy.  All meaningful development is long-term and incremental. It involves frustrations, risk, and vulnerability. Yet it also involves  excitement,  possibility and wonder and we will not have to do it alone – creative development is a collaborative process

Whilst every aspect of our working and everyday life is changing rapidly, we must unlearn and re-learn how we will live with each other. We will have to leave behind our certainties, to stop pretending to be the finished article and allow ourselves to be in development,  to stay open to the possibility of learning and development, to be open to question and open to each other.

The forces of negativity and division cannot prevail if we are able to engage with our best,  most creative selves. If, and only if, we are prepared to become the people we can be we can build communities we can all be proud to live in.

2016 was a year of negativity, death and division. Let’s make 2017 a year  positivity, creativity and collaboration.

 Let’s make 2017 the year we really begin to engage  with our extraordinary creative potential.

Happy New Year!

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Where can we find our collective memory?

I’ve heard it said that intelligence is our ability to learn from our experience. If this is true, then our collective intelligence depends upon our ability to learn from all our experience. It also seems common-sense to me to suggest that, since we all have a different and unique experience, we all have an equal amount to offer and that we have most to learn from those whose voice has been heard the least? The intelligent question we need to ask ourselves is: ’how can we learn from all our experience?’

Our ability to learn from our experience is crucial for both our individual and collective development. As individuals we all need to be able to express ourselves and have a sense of agency in our own lives – as a society we all need to listen and learn from each other.

Unfortunately, modern society has a very limited attention span. Somewhere along the way we have lost our collective memory and with it our collective ability to learn from our experience. Even though we know that all meaningful development is long-term and incremental we seem obsessed with seeking the new and shiny at the expense of the tried and trusted. We are constantly developing new projects that we assess in terms of short-term outcomes. We even celebrate our lack of memory by rewarding projects that are innovative and expecting experienced organisations to continually re-invent themselves!

Actually, I do think there are times when it makes sense to fund someone new to tread a well-beaten path – reinventing the wheel is essential if we are to apply learning to new and unique situations – and I like projects! They are a vital learning tool. However, we can hardly think of ourselves as intelligent if we cannot understand our learning in the context of our long-term development and insist on making the same mistakes again and again.

We all need to find our own context. Discovering our own creative voice can be one of the most transforming experiences of our lives. Besides, making sense of our personal journey is becoming increasingly important to our individual and collective development. Now, more than at any time in our history, who we are matters, this is a time for specialisation,  to find out who  we want to be and to make our own unique contribution to our collective community.

The intelligent response to our changing times is to stop trying to be something we are not and to find out who we are and how we can be better at being that person. We also need to find ways to learn from each other, or there can be no collective learning.

It is time to stop asking the same people to come up with new ideas, to keep relying on the same experience, asking people to do what they are not good at. It is time instead to recognise that we are all experts in our own lives and that we all have an unique contribution to make.

When, for example, an organisation excels at producing high quality art, should we really expect those same people to also excel at making the most of that art for diverse communities? Of course, the better the art the more important it is that we can all access it but is it realistic to expect the same people to be experts in such different fields? Surely, the expertise for that lies elsewhere – with the people themselves and those that know and understand our diverse communities.

Right now I’m not sure many of us have the tools for effective community development but we can learn, we need translators that can build bridges between communities and can help us all to learn from and with each other.

How can we do it? How can we access our collective learning and rediscover our collective memory? I’ve suggested that we might need an organisation to help us but I’m also very aware of how very easy it is for organisations to institutionalise the very dependency they set out to tackle. So, I don’t know.

Fortunately, being able to say I don’t know is a strength. It means I am getting ready to learn. I want to find people who can learn with me so that together we explore the things we don’t know. After all, it’s only what we don’t know that is really interesting, it’s only we we are open to uncertainty that we are open to creativity, and only when we are open to each other that we are able to learn from our experience.

Do get in touch if you’d like to learn together, or better still, come along to one of our events.

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Can you imagine what social justice would look like?

I would like to see communities where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential. I’m not talking about some heavenly vision of fully realised individuals but a real place where we all feel valued and respected and have every opportunity to find out who we want to be, where we explore life’s journey together.

What would such a place look like? What would be different if we were all able to be our true, creative selves? Is it really that hard to imagine?

Of course there would be a lot of changes, I suggest that:
Instead of competing, we would be creating
Instead of teaching, we would be learning
Instead of consuming, we would be collaborating
Instead of delivering – or receiving – we would be realising our potential, together.

Everywhere we looked there would be creative people, projects and places but the I thing we would notice most is that we would have all got a lot better at providing opportunities for each other, at building our capabilities together.

With social justice would come a recognition that creativity, inclusion and sustainable development are good for life and good for business. In a society built on social justice we would all realise just how closely our mutual interests are aligned; that we all contribute best by being our best and that we are all at our best when we listen and learn from each other.

A world of social justice would be one where everywhere we went we would find simple ways to build capability and find opportunities for creative experimentation and peer to peer learning.

If we were serious about social justice, we would assume that each and everyone one of us has a unique creative potential that needs to be recognised, valued and nurtured, that we all need to learn from each other and that none of us can fully realise our creative potential in a society that aspires to anything less than social justice for everyone.

So, why not make that assumption now? Why not start working together to build capability everywhere, to create opportunities for each other and give us all every chance to live in the creative, inclusive and sustainable communities we all deserve?

If you’d like to help build social justice now, here’s a few simple things you can do:

• Design and share a simple creative challenge that can help people get involved in a collaborative project or make the most of a public space near you.
• Choose your own creative challenge to do on your own or to share with a group
• Explore your creative potential?
⁃ What is your vision?
⁃ What capabilities will you build?
⁃ What can you offer?

Do let me know how you get on!

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2015 is going to be an exciting and challenging year.

In 2015 I want to find out if we can establish a diverse network of people that support each other. It might not sound that difficult, but I know we’re going to face lots of challenges.
It’s going to be a year full of problems and questions:

We’re going to face the creativity problem:      Cultural exclusion affects us all. We are all born creative but without access to our creativity none of us can realise the creative potential that is our own unique contribution to society. What’s more, when any one person’s creativity is stifled our shared society suffers.
    We’ll be asking: How can everyone become empowered by art?

We’re going to face the collaboration problem:   None of us can know what is best for any other person. In the long run we cannot create change by doing things to, for, or without each other. We can only create change together.
  We’ll be asking: How can we create collaborative community projects?

We’re going to face the capability problem:      To build social justice we need to create communities where everyone has the capability to fulfil our potential. Since, we all fulfil our own potential by building our capabilities.  We need to find ways to build capability together.
  We’ll be asking: How can we build social justice?

We’re going to face the context problem:          art has the power to transform our lives and our communities but there is only so much any of us can do. It’s only when everything we do is in the context of a long-term that we can say every little helps.
    We’ll be asking: How can we create sustainable social change?

It will be a challenge because we’ll need to recognise that we can all contribute, that we all have something to offer.
It will be a challenge to find ways for us all to engage in equal creative collaborations where we explore who we are and who we can become, together.
Perhaps above all, it will be a challenge for us to accept that we can all be open to our own creativity, and engage with our own vulnerability and weakness – that none of us have all the answers.
  We’ll be asking: How can we build equal, diverse and inclusive networks that recognise the creative contributions of each every one of us?

We’ll be doing this through a series of problem posing forums and network events at which we’ll explore these questions and learn how we can support each other to fulfil our creative potential – as individuals and as communities.

I hope you’ll be able to join us.

 

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Tool Shops – the context for collaborative community arts projects

Projects are by nature short term yet they can only have a lasting legacy if they take place in the context of a long-term plan. It’s not the projects themselves that are the problem – it is the lack of context. When we have a sense of a long-term plan for ourselves we can see everything we do as a learning opportunity and a step towards a long term goal.

This is more difficult at the social level as we need to find a context that enables us all to contribute in our own unique way towards a goal we can all share. I suggest that this goal can be: ‘to build communities where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential’. In this context anything anyone shares can create capability and everything we do can help us build the tools we all need to achieve our long-term goals – both as individuals and as communities.

To achieve this we are developing a diverse and inclusive network of people that all support each other to make tools. According to Wikipedia tools are ‘anything physical that helps people achieve goals.’ Physical tools can help us create change, demonstrate our progress and enable others to learn from our experience. Tools can also be anything that helps us achieve our potential, the full range of social and psychological tools that help us all live increasingly independent, purposeful and creative lives.

Since we all fulfil our potential by building our capabilities then we can design projects as opportunities for people to acquire specific capabilities. This can help us develop collaborative community arts projects as equal creative collaborations in which everyone contributes and everyone benefits equally.

It can also provide a sustainable context and a connection between all the many short-term projects and initiatives that take place in the community by sharing opportunities for people to build tools and capabilities. Creating tools from these projects can facilitate input from a diverse range of people and enable people to contribute to a wide range of projects. For example people will soon be able to contribute to collaborative projects by developing tools to create your own postcard; poster; radio or stained glass window.  All these projects focus on specific issues like violence against women, isolation and social exclusion but all examine universal themes and all can build capability across the community.

These tools and many other will be shared in newsletters, on-line and at ‘Tool Shops’ – public events and forums in community venues where we share tools and make new ones. We are hoping to see Tool Shops pop up in a wide range of community venues, shops, cafes, galleries, museums etc so that people can begin to see their entire community as a creative resource for creative capability development.

Please let us know if you are interested in hosting a tool shop in your community or if you would like to share anything at all that can help build sustainable social change:

We are particularly looking for people to:
Recommend a tool
Share an opportunity
Come to a Forum
Sign up for our newsletter
Host a Tool Shop in your community
Join our team.

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How the arts can create sustainable social change.

I’m constantly meeting fantastic people and hearing about amazing projects – in the last week alone I’ve had conversations with people tackling violence, increasing access to the arts and exploring identity and mythology in a wide range of settings – none of these projects are currently connected yet they all have a huge amount in common. 

We all want to be part of something bigger than ourselves. We all want to make a difference not just now but in the future. However, there is only so much any of us can do. Ultimately we all have to face the same question – how can we create sustainable social change? What we need is a sustainability service that can connect all these great projects and initiatives.

After all, the problem of sustainability is not the projects themselves – or any individual, organisation or initiative – it is simply a lack of context. When we do things in the context of a strategic plan they are no longer isolated activities but steps towards a long-term goal.

We need an organisation that can provide this context for us and hold that long-term vision on our behalf. This is exactly what art + power is setting out to do – to build communities where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential. It is a big vision but one we cannot realise without your help.

Sustainable social change is something we can only create together. We need to build a network that enables a diverse range of people – disabled and socially excluded people, practitioners and policy makers – to support each other through equal, shared collaborations where everyone contributes and everyone benefits, equally.

Adopting an equal, collaborative approach will be a challenge to us all. Just as some of us will find it hard to break out of dependent relationships and realise that we all have something to contribute, so others will struggle to recognise that we cannot create effective change unless we are also prepared to embrace our own vulnerability and engage with our own creative potential and collaborate on an equal basis.

We would need a lot of support for this, but the more we work together the easier it will be to find people that understand what we’re trying to achieve, that will work alongside us, share our anxieties and help us develop the shared language which is the lifeblood of any successful collaboration.

We are excited about the potential for tools and capabilities to become the language of sustainable collaboration not least because it demonstrates how the best way for any of us to contribute is to do what we do best – by building our capabilities

Capabilities are the building blocks of all human development they support:

  • Personal development by helping us all to both identify our goals and take steps to achieve them.
  • Collaborative development by enabling us to develop equal collaborations in which all parties support each other to build our capabilities.
  • Community development by providing a shared framework that provides the context for all we achieve together.

For example, the shared nature of tools and capabilities can help us make connections between all those fantastic projects people are working on. We could even create an inclusive, collaborative project in which people from diverse and disparate communities support each other to create sustainable change in our lives and communities!

There are lots of ways to get involved…

  • Please share anything that can help people build sustainable change into our lives and communities – maybe something that inspires you, a collaborative project or opportunity or a useful tool. Everything helps.
  • Share your ‘Five Questions’ using this quick survey.
  • Sign up for our newsletter for the latest news and opportunities from the network.
  • Come along to a forum
  • Ask for an art + power membership form (purchase a £1 share) and we’ll add you to our collaborative website where we all share and support each other – dave@artandpower.org.uk

Our shared project will be what you make it – what will you do?

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Four Steps to Sustainable Social Change.

To build sustainable social change we need:

1. A process that everyone can contribute to on an equal basis.
2. A means to unlocking our potential.
3. A method that everyone can use to build and measure development.
4. A long-term plan that puts everything we do into context 

We can do this through collaborative, creative capability development:

1. Collaborative – an equal process for people to support each other.
2. Creative –  the key to unlocking our potential.
3. Capability – a  method to build and measure all development 
4. Development – a long-term plan that puts everything we do into context. 

I am working with art + power to put this process into practice by developing ‘Tool Shops’ in our community.  We want to see Tool Shops in lots of different spaces – cafés, galleries, community centres etc –  so that everyone – and particularly disabled and socially excluded people can use the community to build their capabilities. 

Tool Shops can help create sustainable change for individuals and organisations but what about communities?   That’s where art + power comes in. 

art + power is an inclusive network of people that support each other to create sustainable social change. Everyone is welcome, every contribution is valued and everything that people share contributes towards a long-term strategic plan to build communities where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential. 

(You can read more about tool shops and sustainable social change here.)

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Tool Shops – The sustainable way to create social change

Britain faces a crisis of opportunity. Too many people do not have the capability to fulfil their potential. Too much talent and potential is going to waste as too many people find themselves trapped in a deepening cycle of low expectations, minimal opportunities and increasing dependency. This is a difficult and complex problem, but one that we can all help solve.

However, one thing is certain. We will never create sustainable social change if we continue to act as if there were two different kinds of people: those that know what is best for others and those that can be treated as problems to be solved. Building sustainable social change relies on accepting both that we are all different and that we share a common nature.

Diversity is the core strength of any community. We cannot possibly know what is best for each other because each and every one of us has a unique set of experiences and capabilities. However, we do share a common nature and we can, and must, learn from each other. Trying to change without each other is as useless as trying to change others. We can only change together.

The key to unlocking human potential is creativity. If we want to fulfil our potential as individuals, organisations or communities then we must all be prepared to explore our own creativity, to embrace our vulnerabilities and engage with our own potential. We cannot create social change unless we are prepared to change ourselves.

art does indeed have the power to transform both our lives and our communities but there is only so much any of us can do by ourselves. Just as the real value of learning is becoming aware of how much more you don’t know, so with social action, the more you do, the more you realise how much more needs doing. Tough problems like dependence and social exclusion require a broader, more concerted commitment than any one individual or organisation can provide.

We need a long-term approach. Short-term projects often raise expectations that they can’t fulfil and throw light on problems they cannot resolve but the real problem with projects is their lack of context – that they are isolated activities. However, when what we do takes place in the context of our long-term development then every little helps because real development is a long-term (and incremental) process.

It is this long-term context that is missing from our isolated attempts to create broader social change. We need a sustainability service that can provide that context for each other. Then every little thing we do can help towards our long-term development as communities as well as individuals.

art + power is uniquely placed to fill this gap because it is a not-for-profit society that anyone can join and because it has a long-term strategy to build communities where everybody has the capability to fulfil their potential. It’s a big vision, one that it cannot deliver! This vision can only be realised by the shared and concerted efforts of a wide range of people.

So we networks of people that use the arts for sustainable social change. The true value of the arts is that it fosters sustainable development and social justice. Social justice occurs where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential. The reason that art should never be seen as a luxury for the privileged few but as the birthright of every one of us is because it is by building our creative capabilities that we all fulfil our potential.

Capabilities are the building blocks of all human development. They are the tools that enable us all to live increasingly independent, purposeful and creative lives. Capability building is an equal, open and collaborative process by which we all support each other to fulfil our potential. Every time we do something new we build our own capabilities and we can also provide opportunities for others to build theirs. Every activity can become an opportunity for collaborative capability building.

This is what we hope to achieve with our plans for community tool shops. a range of spaces in the community where people can support each other to fulfil our creative potential. We want to see Tool Shops in lots of different spaces – cafés, galleries, community centres etc – so that everyone – and particularly disabled and socially excluded people – can help build more creative, inclusive and sustainable communities.

If you’d like to explore what a Tool Shop could look like in your community do get in touch – or better still come along to: The Tool Shop.

Tool Shops, like art + power, will be what you make it. We can’t make change for you and we can’t do it without you. Sustainable change is not something you do to others, or without others, it is something we can only create together by striving to become the people we want to be and build the communities we can be proud to live in.

Creativity is essential to the business of living. We are all unfinished business, but creativity, inclusion and sustainable development are the essential principles that underpin all meaningful development. So, please help us start the conversation about Tool Shops in your community – the sustainable way to create social change!

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What is a development organisation?

How could we go about implementing a social justice approach within an organisation?

I think there are two things to say at the outset. Firstly, I don’t think we should adopt a social justice approach as an afterthought or even because we feel we ought to. I think we should adopt a social justice approach because we genuinely believe it will help us fulfil our potential.

Fulfilling our potential requires a strategic approach, one that makes the best use of our resources to achieve our goals. A social justice approach sees our best resources as our people, and suggests the best way to achieve our goals is by actively supporting other people to achieve theirs too.

Secondly, I think it helps to remember that if social justice is our goal it is also a journey. Although the process is the same for all of us, the journey will be different for every individual and group. There is no way of knowing what we will learn before we start but we can only build social justice if we are open to finding out what we don’t know and are able to learn from each other.

We have to be prepared to venture into the unknown because social justice is something that can only be created together. We can’t do it for other people and we can’t do it without other people. Just as, any single individual or organisation can only fully realise their potential as part of an ecology of creative collaboration, neither can we know what social justice will look like for other people, we can only invite people to explore it with us.

Our role then is to make that invitation attractive, to make it easier for people to fulfil their potential. Two key things I recommend we can focus on are building enabling environments; and offering opportunities for capability development.

Building enabling environments is about creating the conditions that allow people to flourish. It involves consideration of all the physical, environments, social and psychological factors that help or hinder our development. It’s about helping to produce the conditions, offer the support and provide the tools for people to ‘Create Your Own’ development.

Offering opportunities for capability development is based on the understanding that it is by building our capabilities that we all fulfil our potential. This process of capability development is creative, collaborative and universal.

The universality of capability development has tremendous potential. It can break us free of the hierarchical, didactic process of banking education, of teacher/student, service-provider/service-user relations and replace it with an open conversation which respects, values and nurtures the unique creative potential in each and every one of us.

It enables us to see all our activities as part of an on-going journey in which each incremental step opens up new possibilities and in which all our activities can be understood in the context of our long-term development as individuals, groups and communities.

It also has the potential to change the way we experience our public space. Wouldn’t it be great if, instead of assuming a passive, empty public that need to be filled with the information, we all assumed an engaged, inquisitive public that are interested in exploring, developing, creating and sharing? Surely then we would be able to develop all our activities as opportunities for mutual creative capability development and creative exploration?

Also, If we recognised that the best way to achieve our goals is by supporting others to achieve theirs we would constantly seek out opportunities for creative collaboration; develop an active interest in finding out what each of us was looking for; and be keen to learn from each other’s experience.

OK, maybe I am getting a bit carried away! Let’s see if we can put some of this into practice. What might be some of the features of a developmental organisation that sought to foster social justice?

Here’s the start of a list – I’d be delighted if you would add to it…

A developmental organisation could:
– Seek to maximise the social benefit from all activities.
– Identify the people that can benefit most from what you do, work with them to develop creative collaborations and see how you can learn from their experience to help others.
– Encourage people to participate as people, not just in job roles etc., but as part of their own long-term development strategies.
– Develop practices that build capability and reduce dependence within the organisation.
– Devise a capability framework for the organisation and use it to identify development needs and opportunities.
– Carry out a capability/aspirations audit of key staff and team.
– Devise clear and relevant work packages for staff, freelance contractors, trustees or volunteers.
– Ensure good documentation of process so that every activity contributes towards both individual, organisational and community development.
– Design programmes as opportunities to acquire capabilities.
– Arrange peer support forums to help people identify and tackle constraints, and barriers to creative development.
– Create tool kits and resources to enable others to learn from experience
– Be flexible about the staff review process and employ people in roles that change depending on a regular review of the development needs of both the organisation and its people
– Establish closer links with similar organisations to help foster an an ecology of creative collaboration.
– Consider different measures of monitoring and evaluation. Perhaps, as Kofi Annan has suggested: ‘Development should be not be measured by income but by freedom’
– …

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An invitation to creative collaboration.

We’ve spent the last 15+ years learning about how art empowers. It’s not been an easy journey, we’ve made many mistakes along the way. If we’ve learnt one thing it’s that it is much easier to foster dependence than empowerment. Every time we think we’re getting close we find we have much more to learn. Again and again we’ve seen how short term projects can raise expectations but not sustain the change, we’ve seen projects throw light on long-term problems they can’t resolve. At best it seems that the more we do, the more we find out how much more needs to be done.

This time we really think we’ve cracked it! We’ve worked out why art matters and how art empowers and it’s devastatingly simple: Art matters because it builds social justice (social justice is where everyone has the capability to fulfil their potential). It is through art that we all build the capabilities we need to live fulfilling, purposeful, creative lives. art empowers by building capability – and it’s very exciting!

It’s exciting because it means we can stop thinking about art as the privilege of the few but as the birthright of each and every one of us. It is by building our creative capabilities that we all become the people we want to be and build the communities we choose to live in.

It’s exciting because it means an we can now develop short-term projects in the context of a long-term, on-going, lifelong process of growth and development.

It’s exciting because it means we can stop pretending we know what is best for other people and instead design all our activities as opportunities for people to acquire the capabilities that they are looking for. People can decide for themselves if each activity makes it easier, or harder, for them to do the things they value.

It’s exciting because it means we can stop treating people as problems to be solved but as active agents without whose unique experience we cannot fulfil our potential either. Social justice is about valuing and nurturing the unique, creative contribution of each and every individual, because of who we are.

It’s exciting because we don’t have to pretend to be experts anymore, to make out we have all the answers or pretend to be someone we’re not. Social justice is not about what we’ve done but who we want to become, it’s not about what we know but what we want to find out, it’s not about what (we think) others want us to be but about what makes us who we.

It’s exciting because it means we don’t have to ask anyone’s permission. We build social justice by being ourselves and following our own dreams and passions. In fact we can only build social justice if we are prepared to explore, to engage with our own uncertainty, enter into our own unknown potential. We build the best communities by becoming the best people we can be.

It’s exciting because it means we don’t have to compete any more. Social justice is not about competing over limited resources but creating capability. Everyone has something to contribute, and everyone benefits. Social justice is something we can only build together, through equal, creative collaborations.

It’s exciting because anything anyone anywhere does to build social justice helps everyone everywhere become empowered by art, whether they (or we) know it or not. Just as an artist can find inspiration anywhere so we can take every opportunity to build capability for ourselves and each other.

Of course this is really just the start. we know the theory but how will it work in practice?
We know how art empowers but not what you’ll achieve. We’ve lots of ideas but only you can make it work in practice. We can’t do it for you and we can’t do it without you!

We need you to help us find out what social justice will look like for you, for your local café, community centre or gallery? For your organisation, group or institution? For your community? We need you to help us learn: How can art empower everyone? What are the enabling environments that foster creative collaboration? How can art empower communities?

We’ll be exploring these, and many related questions through creative challenges, in newsletters, online and in person at regular forums and events. But we need you, and the people you know, to help us explore the art of creative collaboration We invite you to help us find out how we can all build our capabilities by building capability for each other.

So, how can you get started?

Well, of course, you already have, you wouldn’t have read this far if you weren’t already building social justice for yourselves and/or others. So, please, keep doing what you’re doing; think about how what you want to learn can provide opportunities for others; and please share anything you think might help – simply hearing what others are doing can help and inspire us all and reminds us all that we are part of something bigger than ourselves.

Just don’t wait to get started, building social justice is a journey of discovery and increasing possibility in which everything you do helps you get a better idea of what you want to do next. So, don’t wait until you’re confident, after all you can’t really help others if you’re not prepared to be helped yourself.

So, please, join in on-line, come to a forum or create your own, but, before you do anything, have a look at these five simple questions that can help us all learn the art of creative collaboration…

1. What are you hoping to achieve?
2. What are you working on now?
3. What are you looking for?
4. What can you offer?
5. What will you do next?

Please share, everything people contribute will help build capability in the community – what will you do?

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