Posts Tagged ‘workshop’

Consensus Workshop

Monday, May 9th, 2011

15 people attended a workshop on consensus decision making tonight:

Consensus decision making is a creative and dynamic way of reaching agreement between all members of a group. Instead of simply voting for an item and having the majority of the group getting their way, a consensus group is committed to finding solutions that everyone actively supports – or at least can live with. This makes sure that all opinions, ideas and concerns are taken into account. By listening closely to each other, the group aims to come up with proposals that work for everyone.

Consensus is neither compromise nor unanimity – it aims to go further by weaving together everyone’s best ideas and most important concerns – a process that often results in surprising and creative solutions, inspiring both the individual and the group as whole.
Working together

At the heart of consensus is a respectful dialogue between equals. It’s about everyone working together to meet both the individual’s and the group’s needs – working with each other rather than for or against each other, something that requires openness and trust.
an onion being peeled – layers marked want, really want, actually need

Consensus is looking for ‘win-win’ solutions that are acceptable to all – no decision will be made against the will of an individual or a minority. Instead the group adapts to all its members’ needs. If everyone agrees to a decision they will all be much more committed to making it happen.

Consensus decision making is based on the idea that people should have full control over their lives and that power should be shared by all, not just concentrated in the hands of a few. It’s about having the freedom to decide one’s own course in life and the right to play an equal role in creating a common future. This is why it is used widely in groups working towards a more just and equitable society such as small voluntary groups, co-operatives and campaign networks.

To learn more about consensus decision making see

Thanks to Rebecca from Seeds for Change in Lancaster for running this workshop for us.

Abundance grafting

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Last Saturday two Abundance members went along to South Lakeland Orchard Group’s grafting workshop at Growing Well.

Our first grafted apple trees

In the 2 hour workshop we had a lively grafting demonstration

from Hilary ‘the apple lady’ Wilson and managed to graft 8 trees, 4 were Scotch Bridget – a hardy cooking apple withstanding drought, harsh winters and poor summers therefore very suitable for our local climate. The other 4 were Duke of Devonshire, a  dessert apple raised at Holker Hall in 1835.

These trees are going to be used in our exciting new Abundance project. If you would like to get involved in Abundance events please contact or ring Lorna on 01539 822165.

Workshop at Climate Camp 2009: Happiness and Growth

Sunday, August 30th, 2009

Happiness and Growth: can we have both?

In a workshop on the theme of Happiness and Growth at this year’s Camp for Climate Action in Blackheath, Caroline Lucus, MEP and Leader of the Green Party and Saamah Abdullah, Researcher on wellbeing from the New Economics Foundation, talked of the urgency of taking action. Over 300,000 people are already dying each year as a direct result of climate change (from a report by the Global Humanitarian Forum, led by Kofi Annan, the former UN Secretary-General).

Caroline suggested a few reasons for this current lack of action:

  • corporate/vested interest (Big Business has vast lobbying capacity)

  • failure to imagine an alternative (to the capitalist growth economy)

  • psychology of dealing with climate change (what stops people acting – often fear)

She suggested that in fact, the changes we need to make will increase our well-being. For example, using the car less can improve your health, leisure time and money. Growth of the economy, on the other hand, will lead to increased emmissions.

Caroline urged the audience to attend a screening of the film The Age of Stupid!