There is a spin-off group which is currently calling itself the ‘Hastings Doughnut Economics Action Group’. These amazing people are aiming to promote Doughnut Economics, and policies in Hastings which they think fit in that framework. I am inviting lovely Mil to write here a little bit about what they do…
Sounds good @DanaPop
The key to success of any movement is growing communities of action from the bottom up.
The 7 step recipe that Doughnut Economics offers is one of the best I’ve seen with major potential if we can share the recipe book that makes it very easy for others to take action in their local community.
Look forward to hearing more from Hastings and other areas that are pioneering in this important field
The Hastings Doughnut Economics Action Group has been going a few months now. (It may change its name, we’re having a meeting to agree our aims and name on 15 October.) The group came out of a radical reading group that is still going on, that is hosted by Printed Matter Bookshop, a radical bookshop in central Hastings, down on the south coast of England.
We read Doughnut Economics together, decided there was so much to discuss we’d have a second reading group meeting devoted to it, and then set up a separate Action Group to try to move our town, Hastings, in the direction of the safe space.
So far, we’ve given some talks locally, had a high-quality poetry fundraiser (raised £32), held a public meeting in co-operation with local Quakers to discuss alternative economics, set up an email list on Riseup, and contributed (today) to a day festival as part of Sustainability-on-Sea. We had a stall which sold the book, handed out leaflets which a couple of members wrote, and drew a huge chalk Doughnut diagram on the ground. Was it 30 feet wide? We also had a big colourful Doughnut diagram at the public meeting. (Maybe five foot wide?)
Actually, the public meeting last week was also part of Sustainability-on-Sea. We had 48 people at the meeting, largely due to the publicity boost given by the week-long sustainability festival (which was co-ordinated by two terrific local groups, Energise Sussex Coast and Transition Town Hastings - I’m not allowed to embed more than two links, but they’re easy to find).
We’ve also been contacting local economics teachers, making a list of groups in Hastings who’re doing related work, and trying to co-operate with what’s already happening rather than duplicating it. Someone has also talked to some local councillors about these ideas. One possible area of work is trying to be a constructive part of the conversation about development plans in the town.
What we’d love to do is to organise a Doughnut Economics conference in Hastings, but we’ve pushed the date for that back because we wanted to be sure there was enough energy in the group that it wouldn’t end up falling on just a couple of people (who hadn’t signed up for that kind of responsibility).
We’re a mixed bunch of people, some of us from the Green Party, some of us from the Labour Party, some of us anti-political parties, others from other points on the political spectrum. Some of us are experienced campaigners, others are new to this kind of work. We’ve had a range of ages at meetings, from 20s to 70s. In terms of race, I’m the only person of colour who’s been attending working meetings so far. Most people attending working meetings are women.
We may also differ in terms of how we see change happening, what’s needed to make change happen, so there are plenty of challenging conversations ahead. One member has given a lot of copies of Matthew Bolton’s How to Resist (sort of a community organising manual) to members of the group, and we’re probably going to have a meeting to talk about that and other approaches to making change.
Someone bought several copies of Doughnut Economics to give away, and we’re sending a free copy tomorrow to someone in Eastbourne who is very interested but can’t afford the book right now because she’s on benefits.
I don’t know what will become of this group, but I am sure that engaging with Kate Raworth’s work has enriched a lot of us, and that it will lead to positive things in this town in some manner, straightforward or mysterious.
(PS I’m not sure why we haven’t set up a blog/website yet.)
Well done Hastings
Sounds like your gathering the ingredients of a local cookbook to get Doughnut Economics rolling on the ground…