Congratulations to Lock the Gate!

AGL, an Australian gas and electricity company, recently announced that it was abandoning a controversial coal seam project in Gloucester (just north of Newcastle). The Gloucester Gas Project had plans for over 300 gas wells and was facing fierce opposition. This video by Lock the Gate, one of the groups highlighting the dangers of Coal Seam Gas projects, celebrates some of the victories from 2015 – before the announcement that AGL was not proceeding with their project.

Congratulations to all involved!

If you liked this post please follow my blog (top right-hand corner of the blog), and you might like to look at:

  1. Blue Men: Message to Humanity
  2. Consumption and the Transition movement
  3. 10 ways to reduce your consumption
  4. Our addiction to growth
  5. Climate change, health and children
  6. Special days and dates for the environment – 2016

 

 

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Earth Hour 2016

With 2015 being the hottest year on record (by a large margin) and too little being done to address climate change, activities like Earth Hour continue to be very important.

Clearly Earth Hour isn’t going to solve climate change – it doesn’t claim too – but Earth Hour does make a difference.  The paradox of inconsequence suggests that although any single action we do to combat climate change can feel like we are making no real difference; it will only be through millions of smaller decisions and actions that we will be able to successfully combat climate change and create more sustainable communities. Continue reading

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A song for Sunday – This Machine

This is the first Song for Sunday in ages – but it is a great one, and one you probably haven’t heard; it’s had under 6000 views on YouTube.  Over Christmas/New Year we went to the Woodford Folk Festival (a fabulous experience) and “This Machine” by FourPlay String Quartet was one of my favourite songs from the six days of music.

Lara Goodridge, the singer, has a beautiful voice, the music is catchy , and the lyrics (see below) have a message. Well worth the listen. Continue reading

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A very British way of explaining sexual consent

This is so simple, so clear, and so clever! What a wonderful way of explaining consent.

If you liked this post please follow my blog (top right-hand corner of the blog), and you might like to look at:

  1. Parenting for a better world
  2. When is it OK for kids to walk home alone?
  3. What’s your parenting style?
  4. Why I’ve gone rainbow-coloured
  5. Domestic violence – why doesn’t she just leave?
  6. The joys of a community cinema
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A community engagement reading list

(Photo: jarmoluk)

(Photo: jarmoluk)

 The following are some readings from a couple of subjects I teach (at both an undergraduate and postgraduate) on community engagement. The reading lists for the two courses are quite different but I have combined them here to provide a broad range of literature.

I realise that some of them may seem a strange choice, but they are there to make a specific point. For example the paper by Tim Moore (2011) on wicked problems is particularly relevant for students from some of the more scientific disciplines where they are used to the idea that when you do A then B will be the outcome. They need to realise that working with communities is more complex and we don’t always know what will work.

While many of the papers are available online; some of them are chapters from a book or are journal articles that are only available online if you (or a library you belong to) has a subscription.

They are listed alphabetically under some introductory and general material and then three broad areas of community engagement:

  1. Introduction to community engagement and general literature
  2. Community engagement in community development and community building
  3. Community engagement in service delivery
  4. Community engagement in planning and decision making

Continue reading

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Updating a course on community engagement

HLSC2241 online teachingI’m in the process of restructuring the undergraduate online elective I teach on community engagement (HLSC2241). I have made quite a few chances since developing it in 2008, but I’ve been finding students were confusing some of the concepts involved and suspect it’s because community engagement means different things in different contexts. I used to have five modules:

  1. Introduction to community engagement
  2. Building on community strengths
  3. Strategies for community engagement
  4. Case studies of community engagement
  5. Summing up

The new structure is based on three broad areas where community engagement is used:

  1. Introduction to community engagement
  2. Community engagement in community development
  3. Community engagement in service delivery
  4. Community engagement in planning and decision-making
  5. Summing up

Continue reading

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Special days and dates for the environment – 2016

Woodford Folk FestivalThere are many international days/weeks or national days/weeks that focus on the environment. The following are some of the more significant ones. There is also a list of special days and dates for families and communities. Please let me know if I have missed any important ones. (Days marked with a * are mainly for Australia.)

World Wetlands dayFebruary

Business Clean Up Day – Tuesday, 1 March 2016 *

World Wetlands Day – Tuesday, 2 February 2016

International Polar Bear Day – Saturday, 27 February 2016

March

Schools Clean Up Day – Friday, 4 March 2016 *

Continue reading

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Special days and dates for families and communities – 2016

There are many international days/weeks or national days/weeks that focus on families and communities. The following are some of the more significant ones. There is also a list of days and dates for the environment. Please let me know if I have missed any important ones. (Days marked with a * are mainly for Australia.)

February

World Day of Social Justice – Saturday, 20 February 2016

International Mother Language Day – Sunday, 21 February 2016

March

Zero Discrimination Day – Tuesday, 1 March 2016

International Women’s Day – Tuesday, 8 March 2016 Continue reading

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We need to change the date of Australia Day

It’s time to change the date of Australia Day. For many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, Australia Day (the day the British flag was first raised in what is now known as Sydney Cove) is not a day of celebration. Some people prefer to call Australia Day as Invasion Day, Day of Mourning or Survival Day.

We need to find a date that does not have such negative connotations for the people who were dispossessed over the years and centuries since the arrival of the First Fleet. We need a date that can help bring Australians together more successfully. Continue reading

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Stan Grant “Racism is destroying the Australian Dream”

In the lead up to Australia Day this is a passionate reminder that we have much to do before we can be proud of our history, particularly in relation to the original inhabitants of the land. Continue reading

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