Hi PLC Community,
It is nice to "e-join" you.
I'm just five days away from the last session of PLC's Online Certification Program for Community Advocates, and I wanted to share a bit about myself and my aspirations for becoming a "conversation leader" in this area.
I retired from active work-for-pay in late 2007. Prior to that time, I'd been a mechanical engineer (1965-82, including a year in Vietnam as an engineer officer), and, after a re-education in Philadelphia, a clinical social worker (1984-2007). I've always had an active social conscience, but the increasing centralization of wealth (and crushing of the poor and the natural environment) in our USA over the last 35 years consumed ever more of my attention after I retired. I then worked with others at our local Unitarian Church to form an "Economic Reform Advocacy Group" in 2010. Since then, we've divided into two working teams: A banking reform team and a caring economy team.
For our Cohort Aster's Certfication Training Program's practicum, I gave a PowerPoint presentation in our home in Albuquerque on the evening of April 6, 2015, using a laptop and a pc mini-projector operated by an attendee/friend. The event also included a dessert break and “get to know each other time” period. I had five friends and colleagues attend, most of of whom are concerned about the tragic state of our economy. Besides the PowerPoint presentation from the community advocates team, I prepared three handouts: an agenda for the evening, a list of discussion questions and a list of related resource materials, including The True Wealth of Nations, for future study.
Here are a couple of images from that evening:
My Next Planned/Hoped For Steps:
I will present this same material (using the same 37 slides out of the 69 contained in the original material given us in the community advocates materials from the PLC website) in a formal forum at our First Unitarian Church (in our Memorial Hall, which can seat 50 or so people) on Sunday, May 17. That event will be separate from, and concurrent with, the main worship service in the sanctuary. Given the 60 minute time limitation protocol, I hope there will be enough interest among the audience to have a second, shorter session at the church to (only) cover the discussion questions (both mine and those submitted by the attendees) thoroughly within the following two weeks.
Our “caring economy study/advocacy group” will continue to study Riane’s book - and related works by other authors - and to meet on a monthly basis at our First Unitarian Church, and I am hoping that several other people in the group will help me in presenting (and doing publicity work for) further presentations around the Albuquerque area. Such presentations could be given to church groups, business community organizations, the local political parties, even governmental bodies at the city and state level (eventually). Again, to allow time for discussion, I think that in the future, this normally will require two sessions (and include all 69 slides).
I would also like to link up with related social action organizations in Albuquerque and over the Internet in a variety of ways. Our older “economic reform” group at the First Unitarian Church already has a (primitive???) website here: http://rightecomics.org – which admittedly needs to be expanded to cover Riane’s work in her book and in the Center for Partnership Studies.
Finally, I'd like to commend to your attention this brand-new organization devoted to developing new models for our political-economic system which will serve both people and our natural environment:
The Next System Project Website: http://thenextsystem.org/
Respectfully submitted, Bob Riley