We think it’s time to have a party to celebrate all that we’ve learned over the last four decades, and to pay attention to what it might be teaching us for our shared futures.
The Festival will present those who attend with an opportunity to hear from practitioners, local residents and fellow ABCD enthusiasts from around the world about their community building efforts. So, if you are seeking stories of transformation, like-minded travellers, and folks willing to ask some ‘wicked’ questions, all against a backdrop of beautiful English countryside, then come and join us!
The Festival will be filled with music, dance, local food, pot-lunches and nourishing conversations.
We are expecting the founders of the ABCD Institute John McKnight and Jody Kretzmann, the leaders at the Coady International Institute, and many of the ABCD Institute Faculty. We will also be joined by fellow ABCDers from ABCD Asia Pacific and ABCD Europe. And we are inviting people from other citizen-led movements to share their learnings and muse with us.
The Festival is jointly hosted by the ABCD Institute, ABCD Europe, Coady International Institute, ABCD in Action, ABCD Asia Pacific and Bank of I.D.E.A.S.
So what is ABCD?
We think Peter Kenyon, from Bank of I.D.E.A.S, Australia captures the principles pretty nicely.
- Meaningful and lasting community change always originates from within. Local residents in that community are the best experts on how to activate that change.
- Community residents act responsibly when they care and support what they create.
- Building and nourishing relationships is at the core of building healthy and inclusive communities.
- Communities have never been built by dwelling on their deficiencies, needs and problems. Communities respond creatively when the focus is on resources, capacities, strengths and aspirations.
- The strength of the community is directly proportional to the level that the diversity of its residents’ desire, and are able to contribute their abilities and assets to the well-being of their community. Every single person has capacities, abilities, gifts and ideas, and living a good life depends on whether those capacities can be used, abilities expressed, gifts given and ideas shared.
- In every community, something works. Instead of asking “what’s wrong, and how to fix it,” ask “what’s worked and how do we get more of it?” It generates energy and creativity.
- Creating positive change begins simply with conversation. It is the way human beings have always thought together and initiated action.
- Having fun needs to be a high priority in all community-building efforts.
- The central factor in sustainable change is local leadership and its continuous development and renewal.
- The starting point for change is always mindset and positive attitudes.
So much more than a conference – it’s more about making new connections and creating brilliant memories!!
My Life Social Enterprise is the little community organisation base in the NW of England that’s helping to co-ordinate and make this conference a reality. It’s a young organisation, established for nearly 3 years and has grown from the disability inclusion movement. Its mission: to create a community where everyone belongs. Its gift is about doing more with more and creating great spaces for people to come together and enjoy the company of others, without it costing the earth. My Life has held similar types of experiences for people from across the UK and is priviledged to be involved in this once in a lifetime opportunity. “All that we do is given in our own time and from the heart – we want to ensure that you have a great time and if we can help with anything we will”. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.my-life.org.uk
So how does it work?
It’s a tried and tested method of using an ABCD approach in action. We bring people together in great accommodation, with wonderful facilities, and we buy lots of local food. You will have a lot of guidance and support to be in the right place at the right time, so don’t worry. We will provide you with a hamper of local produce, clear instructions of if you are cooking or eating out each night, and even some top tips of where to buy your favourite tipple from.
Oh yes, the conference! The key notes and the amazing array of topic tents and entertainment are all happening, but it is the connection of people that we believe makes the difference. You will be part of a community of over 300 amazing people from all over the world. You will live, eat, laugh, share stories and problem-solve together, and join a positive movement for change. It’s not about us organising an event – it’s about all of us being part of creating a community where everyone belongs.
If you are travelling before the conference starts or are staying on afterwards, we have connections from all over the UK who would love you to visit. We will be happy to put you in touch, but will need at least 2 months’ notice for this to be possible. For more information contact email@example.com
I need a visa to travel, can you offer a supporting letter?
Are there any discounts/free places for the conference?
My English isn’t very good, will there be interpreters?
We are travelling a long way and want to arrive sooner, is this possible?
Is food included?
I have a disability is the place accessible?
What do I need to bring?
Where is the best place to fly in to?
I live in the UK do I need to come for the whole 5 days?
Can I come as a daily delegate?