Not quite my age range
Given its emphasis on youth I did have some doubts about attending, but I signed up, adding this note to the organisers:
Hope its okay to join in this despite not being the target age range, but these are issues very dear to my heart. I need to come and learn all the good ideas people have at present. Anything to do with "21st century lifestyles, life-long-learning, or livelihoods" is central to my work. Many of the issues aren't just the concerns of young Europeans.
The response encouraged me, saying:
Although our project is about how young people cope with making a living, the festival is there to learn and exchange on how people from all ages & backgrounds are finding new ways to make a living.
I thought it might be useful to put these notes up beforehand. They may prove useful references to have quickly to hand for exploring areas of overlapping interests..
- I'm pro-actively involved in projects related to 21st century lifestyles, life-long-learning, and livelihoods.
- I'm the UK hub of the Dadamac Community (which is active in London, in Nigeria and on the Internet) - and our current main concern in is Challenging the lack of employment opportunities
- In the UK I connect with Collage-Network - http://collage-network.co.uk/ - which came into being as a response to the situation of people who need to "reposition themselves in the world of work" following redundancy
Collage-Network - Age of Collaboration
In Collage Network we recognise that there is deep systemic change going on. We challenge the notion that the industrial society model of "work" will be the norm for the future. We believe that the whole idea of "work" needs re-working. We do not believe in the lie that there is a simple divide between work and unemployment. We do not agree with the simplistic idea that "being in work'' is a simple matter of either learning to "write a better CV to get an off the peg job" or "doing-it-yourself-and-on-you-own through self-employment".
We believe in the value of a more community focused approach, where people know each other, and know each others talents, skills, strengths and weaknesses. Collage-network believes in the value of developing experience of working together in small ways and large ways (sometimes working for each other, sometimes working with each other for customers). Collage-network aims to build a community where we are looking out for each others interests regarding livelihoods, and where we can quickly form teams to take advantage of opportunities for work.
We believe there is much in common between people who are young - (with little or no work experience) and people who are older - sometimes much older (who have years of experience - for better or worse - of working life). We believe there is a huge mixed-age community which is (re)positioning itself in the world of work and redefining what "the world of work" will look like in the 21st century.
There is an enormous amount of valuable work that needs to be done. (I said "work" not "jobs".) By "work" I have in mind "applied effort that creates value" - some of it the value being obvious financial value, some being obvious social value, some of it a mixture. We should be cebebrating the fact that, with so much valuable work waiting to be done, we have plenty of people (with a huge range of abilities and aptitudes) ready to invest their time and effort in adding value to their own lives and the lives of others. The main problem we have to tackle is not the lack of traditional "off the peg" jobs (we don't want a return of more wage-slave jobs). Our main problems are deciding how to organise ourselves to do the valuable work and also to make sure that everyone is rewarded.