Dear members and friends,
When I tell people that I enjoy living alone – they don’t really believe it. `Alone` is seen as a last resort for those who can’t keep a relationship – losers. Intimate attachments are certainly the hub around which our lives revolve – but not the only hub. Sharing our living space (and our lives) with a partner is too much for some of us – we over-adapt – lose ourselves. I feel most real when I’m alone.
Another thing which grates, is the attitude that being old is of less value than being young. The late period of our lives has a purpose every bit as important as the early and middle bits. It’s the time of self-discovery – when our engagement with the affairs of the world diminishes – and we are less concerned what people think. We travel inwards to find order – coherence – reconciliation – wholeness. As elders, we embody the history of our tribe.
I’m beginning to become aware that the more truly solitary we are, the more compassionate we can be; the more we let go of what we love, the more present our love becomes. I get glimpses of a `way` beyond good and evil – other paradoxes – which I don’t really understand – but which invite me on a journey. Being 70 and alone feels the right preparation for this adventure – as exciting as any in my previous life.
Supporting Voluntary Action (SVA) is a major (£8m) programme managed by SCVO for the Lottery in Scotland. For its size it is surprisingly low key – I couldn’t find a trace of it in either of their websites. But the attached e-mail informs that one of the tasks of SVA is to develop, by October this year, a shared vision for umbrella support of our Third Sector going forward. Senscot believes that our Govt’s failure to recognise and support a distinct community sector in Scotland represents a glaring deficiency in Third Sector infrastructure. The SNP could have been expected to understand that democracy is about layers of autonomy. The empowerment of local govt. is only step one. When will we see any sign of step two. http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8513
The Enterprise Fund has announced its latest tranche of awards this week (25 organisations), taking the overall total of successful applicants over the 50 mark. Over £3.2m has now been allocated. July’s list includes the like of CFINE, the Melting Pot, Govanhill Baths and Bookdonors. Here’s the latest list. http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8495 Meanwhile over at SIS, Craig Campbell tells that The Scottish Investment Fund is expected to have £9m in approved investments across 15 enterprises by the end of August with a further £18m at various stages of work in progress. We’ll keep you informed on progress. See more, http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8511
When I was working in Wester Hailes, a relatively rich friend asked me to identify a needy and deserving family – so he and his kids could deliver Christmas presents – see how the other half lived. I was appalled at this suggestion – the indignity of charity – told him so – but now I am not so sure. I’ve watched the last two episodes of ‘How the other half live’ (Thursdays Channel 4) and it has made me ask what right I have to object – made me examine my assumptions. Here’s Colette Marshall of Save the Children’s take on it. http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8512
Scottish Review is an online current affairs magazine and I usually check out Kenneth Roy’s iconoclastic piece – this Tuesday about the dire state of public appointments to the arts. For those wishing to contribute to Scottish public life in this way he advises, be white; be male; be middle class; be quite old; be in finance; be from Edinburgh. https://senscot.net/?viewid=8514
It is a prime concern that the Scottish media – our platform for political debate – is largely controlled by London. This issue is raised by Margo MacDonald in her piece in TfN this week about the way Fleet Street has blanked debate about her forthcoming End of Life Choices Bill. I wish we had a few more Margo’s in our parliament. http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8515
NOTICES: We can’t flag all notices here, but submit jobs and events and we’ll post them on our site. See http://www.senscot.net/jobsevents.php. This week:
JOBS: The GRAB Trust, Send-it Fulfilment Solutions Ltd, Tailor Ed Foundation , Penumbra, Terminal One Youth Centre, Renfrewshire Environmental Trust, Keymoves, Forth Sector, DTA Scotland, Recycle Fife
EVENTS: Growing a Civil Economy, Festival of Politics, 22 Aug; Scotland’s 1st National Community Energy Conference, 27 Aug; From Ideas To Action, CWA/DTAS, 28 Aug; International Social Enterprise Business Models Conference, 2 Sep; Scotland’s constitutional future, Scottish Policy Innovation Forum, 4 Sep; Mental Health at Work, 9 Sep, Delivering Person Centred Services, 22 Sep;
NETWORKS NEWS: Colin writes: Five Scottish social enterprises are being awarded the Social Enterprise Mark (SEM) at an event at the Engine Shed in Edinburgh today. The five awardees are Bookdonors, the Wise Group, Recycle Fife, Out of the Blue and the Engine Shed itself. The five `Scottish Champions` are the first tranche to be awarded the Mark in Scotland. Other social enterprises are also showing interest in applying for the Mark in advance of the scheduled UK roll-out in November. See press release http://www.senscot.net/networks1st/shownotice.php?articleid=61 See more Networks News, see http://www.senscot.net/networks1st/showart.php?articleid=102
CEiS is hosting an International Social Enterprise Business Models Conference on 2nd September 2009 at the Radisson Hotel in Glasgow. The event will showcase international and local social enterprise best practice and cover key themes such as mergers, acquisitions and partnerships. The Conference has some top notch speakers. If you’d like to attend, see details, http://www.senscot.net/view_event.php?viewid=8364
Scottish Govt is looking to establish a Resilience Fund for third sector organisations that have been affected by the recession. The Fund (approx £1.6m) is expected to be available later in the year. The Scottish Social Enterprise Coalition (SSEC) is looking for thoughts/comments on this proposal. Deadline is Monday 18th August at 5pm. See more, http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8493
A further outcome from this year’s `Fit for Purpose` Conference sees the publication of a new document that seeks to give a broader understanding of how social enterprises can impact on improving health in local communities. See here, http://www.senscot.net/view_res.php?viewid=8479 Senscot will also be producing two sets of case studies on social enterprise and health. First, last year’s `Fit for Purpose` case studies will be updated as well as another piece of work exploring opportunities for social enterprises to engage with Scottish Govt`s `Healthy Working Lives` initiative. These will be available later this month. See last year’s case studies http://www.senscot.net/view_res.php?viewid=7155
This week’s bulletin profiles a new social enterprise providing educational shows and workshops to primary schools, high schools, festivals and community venues across Scotland. Ecodrama, a former Firstport awardee, launched its new children’s theatre show in Eigg in May. Their drama workshops are designed to help schools in Scotland achieve their Green Flag Award. For more, see http://www.senscot.net/view_prof.php?viewid=8506
Here’s a paper I really enjoyed about the nature of ‘Sovereign Local Organisations – holding rightful power.’ It’s from a South African organisation called CDRA – check it out – wish we had one of them in Scotland. http://www.senscot.net/view_news.php?viewid=8131
The Window by Raymond Carver: “A storm blew in last night and knocked out the electricity. When I looked through the window, the trees were translucent. Bent and covered with rime. A vast calm lay over the countryside. I knew better. But at that moment I felt I’d never in my life made any false promises, not committed so much as one indecent act. My thoughts were virtuous. Later on that morning, of course, electricity was restored. The sun moved from behind the clouds, melting the hoarfrost. And things stood as they had before.”
That’s all for this week. Good luck with your adventures
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