We're the founders of Stir to Action and STIR Magazine, and we're crowdfunding to support a six-month programme of training workshops to build the co-operative capacity of local communities. We want to establish strong and resilient communities that face up to climate change, financial crises and the other social problems we experience.
Over the last few years we've realised that while magazines can inspire and be a starting point for making the changes we’d like to see, they can only do so much. It’s a big step from reading about community farming, the launch of a local currency or the creation of a co-operative...to actually seeing these projects succeed.
The next stage for Stir to Action is to host a six-month programme of two-day training workshops — intense and involved — facilitated by some of our inspiring and innovative magazine contributors from the last few years. So from March to September 2015, we’ll be running a series of 12 workshops in beautiful Bridport, Dorset, where the magazine is based.
The workshop programme itself is being designed using some of the best practice around strengthening local economies, such as sourcing local, co-operative food, working with young apprentices, bed-mapping local hosts and discounts for green travel.
We're even hosting a tea blending workshop with a local, ethical tea company to make a bespoke, co-branded tea for the workshops!
We have Brett Scott, author of the Heretic’s Guide to Global Finance and founder of the London School of Financial Arts. He’ll be delivering a workshop on the exciting new tools and strategies in financial activism and also the creation of maker-hack spaces.
The Bristol Cable Co-op will be delivering a workshop on creating citizen journalism initiatives. This will include everything from crowdfunding your project to crowdsourcing your constitution; from making smart phone reports to learning the basics of wordpress and article writing.
We’ve also got Jon Halle of Share Energy Co-op on setting up the co-operative structure, launching a crowdshare offer to fund your renewable installation, and working on the all-important community engagement.
This interactive workshop delivered by Rhiannon Colvin and Constance Laisné of Alt Gen will empower young people (18-29 year olds) to take control of their future by learning how to set up co-operative businesses.
With high youth unemployment, unpaid internships and exploitative labour market, co-ops enable youth to create their own work. This allows them to generate a fair income, do what they love and have a positive social impact.
Mark Walton and Kate Swade from Shared Assets will host a workshop on community management and governance of land and natural resources. The workshop will draw on Shared Assets’ experience of supporting new forms of management of woodlands, parks, green spaces, waterways and coastal areas. It will use case studies to outline the range of business models available for the development of land based social enterprise and provide new tools that can help practitioners to make better decisions about growing and scaling up their work.
Spend a day with Carrie Gamble from Dorset Chai Wallah, sampling different ethical teas from around the world. In the afternoon they'll be the opportunity for you to create your own personal tea blend! One of the blends created during this workshop will become the bespoke, co-branded blend that will be used and sold during the 6 month workshop programme. Jonny Gordon-Farleigh, editor of STIR magazine, will help judge which tea becomes that very special Stir to Action tea!
Everyone who supports the campaign will get a big thank you from us and we'll put your name in our supporters list on the programme and website. You'll see a breakdown of the rewards in the column on the right. Here's some more info to entice you...
As we publish original art in every issue of our quarterly magazine, we've selected Matthew Frame's beautiful illustration from our George Monbiot interview for the tote bag artwork. We'll be printing these bags using the silk screen printer in STIR's studio especially for you!
We'll also be printing t-shirts custom designed by illustrator Edd Baldry/ Hey Monkey Riot — Even Little Things Can Cause a Big Stir.
If you find you've got an appetite for pizza and deep conversation, here's your chance to share both with internationally renowned philosopher and activist Nina Power. She's the author of One-Dimensional Woman, a senior lecturer in philosophy at Roehampton University, and a regular contributor to publications like Radical Philosophy, the Guardian and STIR.
There are a couple rewards that pre-book you or a friend on a workshop! We aren't offering pre-bookings to anyone except our crowdfunders. Why not use your pledge to save yourself a seat?
Our Great Transition reference library will be a collection of practical books and resources that will be located in the Chapel in the Garden's public reading room in Bridport, where the workshops will be held.
(**For rewards of £15 and above for supporters outside of the UK, please add £5**)
>> Hire workshop spaces and equipment>> Train local apprentices>> Create sponsored places or bursaries for those on low or no income>> Design and distribute promotional materials>> Co-ordinate the workshop programme