Appreciating Nikki, Collaboration, Collage and Dadamac

If you've read Nikki's latest blog Adieu for now! you'll already know that Dadamac is losing Nikki for the time being as she has to give her full attention to Collage-network ("Collage" for short - and "Collage-network - Age of Collaboration" to give its fuller title). We're going to miss her valuable input, not just in visible ways like the blog, but for all she's been doing to help shape and nurture Dadamac.

Collage emerged from Dadamac

At first sight Collage may look like something completely different to Dadamac, but in fact they are closely related, so Nikki's change of direction is not as sudden and complete as it might appear. Collage has emerged naturally from some aspects of the work that Nikki and I have been doing together as Dadamac. When Nikki and I were first exploring the ideas that then developed into Collage we thought of doing everything under the Dadamac umbrella, but then we decided that would cause confusion. Gradually a separate organisation emerged called Collage. Nikki brought the inspiration of the new name, and graudually took over its shaping and direction. (More on the story behind Collage.) We are both hoping that the lessons we learned in all aspects of Dadamac (and our failure to make Dadamac Ltd financially viable) will be useful in making this new enterprise a success.

Still working together

Nikki and I are still in regular contact, sharing plans and progress reports and helping each other as we can. The structures that we set up together for Dadamac are still working here, and many of the Dadamac ways of working formed the foundation of Collage. Anyone who looks behind the scenes of Dadamac and Collage will see a strong family resemblance - although Collage is now out in the world making its own way. 

Looking forward

Nikki secured her first funding at the start of this year - becoming an UnLtd Star People Award Winner. She has now established Collage firmly at Matthews Yard, in Croydon. She and other "Collagers" are there regularly on a Monday morning, and the number of people invovled is growing. I expect to make Monday mornings with Collage a fairly regular part of my 2013 routine.

Collage is about collaboration, and already, through Collage, Dadamac Foundation has found a volunteer interested in keeping our accounts - one of the tasks Nikki has done for us in the past. Nikki and I hope more volunteers may follow.  Collage is a network for people who are repositioning themselves in the world of work, and that often involves doing some voluntary work including keeping skills honed, and developing new ones.

Dadamac has always needed more people to be involved. It does many things to do with sharing (and creating) knowledge and information. These are things that we believe are valuable - but which are hard to connect directly with the worlds of funding or payment. It seems that "Collage finding volunteers", and "Dadamac providing opportunites for skill development" may be one way that we continue to connect in a mutually beneficial way.

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