Hi all! Great to see last year's initiative is taken a step further! Georgia's been doing great on the projects part, and people are still eager to come to the meet-ups I organize, not always a lot of people, but always people with great ideas to share.
I am writing this right now from my kitchen table with a 4 day old baby next to me! We got home from the hospital yesterday :)). Little Leonard will join the futurespotters community right away!
So what's been happening in Georgie? Well, to start with, I am slightly biased as I got a part time advisor position at Iare Pekhit (the pedestrian rights organization) to help them set up a membership based association (funded by undef). So what's happening on the pedestrian rights front I now know all about . Actually, today there's an event where the winner of a public art contest will be revealed. Unfortunately I will not be able to join, but I'll make sure to post some pics to the Georgia group later on.
For a few months different public space related grass roots organizations joined efforts in order to stop the building of a shopping mall and cable cart in old town under the name ERTAD (together). Several meet ups and one large protest march were organized. Unfortunately the group fell apart due to some miscommunications amongst the members, but for as long as it lived it showed great progress. I guess in the future with other large projects which may harm the urban space, this will be able to be set up again.
The last few months an artist duo has been tagging the city with phrases which should make people think about the space they live in. It's an art and social development project by Mariam Natroshvili and co. It's really cool to be in the suburbs somewhere and see a prhase and know it's them. The other day I was hiking (when I still could ) in the hills behind our flat and found a text stenciled on an abandoned trailer in the middle of nowhere. It's very powerful. It would be great to find out more about the project and the artists' goals.
What else? Oh yes, in fall several people came together (elva, undp, remi from cospot, me, charlotte from new ngo chaikhana, eric from jumpstart) to brainstorm about setting up a social innovation hub. We held several different meetings about how and what and were offered a place in the national scientific library. By January we were convinced we would somehow be able to make this happen, when the director of the library told us he had gotten a large sum of the government to renovate the place themselves, we would not be able to use the space permanently as a result. Although this was disappointing, UNDP offered the library to help them set up a workshop to see what users would like the library to be (co-creating). The Social Innovation Hub has been a bit quiet since, but that's ok. In the mean time we have learned of several other different hubs being set up: one at a university, and one by a local youth NGO with the support of businesses. There may even be more, but I cant tell you from the top of my head .
There are many more interesting developments, such as the creation of the NGO chaikhana, which supports journalists; several different small social start-ups have seen the light; and probably many many more.
So, why this summary of how Georgia is doing? Well, as many of you know I was Georgia's community builder last year for the Spot the Future project. I loved doing the work (it doesnt even feel like work!). And, I would love to take on the role again. I have time as well, as I ditched some projects pre-birth that I didnt like, to have more positiveness in my life. And, as I already know from last year how it works (I do know there are several different changes, but nothing to major as I understand), I will be able to work efficiently! :))
Now, this is a quick post from my kitchen table, still a bit sore from giving birth, but I could not NOT reply . Anyway, shoot if you have any follow up questions. I'll be following the group closely and see what's happening.