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  • Your Past / Your Possibilities #DreamBigStartSmall

    WEvolution is celebrating its 10th birthday and is commemorating the occasion by championing the efforts of all those involved in starting SRGs. We will be celebrating the last decade and the many achievements of our SRGs, as well as looking forward to the future and what possibilities there are on the horizon!

    Our celebrations will be taking place on both Friday 22nd January and Saturday 23rd January. Wondering what to expect? See below!

    Friday 22nd January (7.00pm – 9.00pm)

    Schedule includes:
    – Keynote Speaker, Jean Johansson
    – Stories from our SRG Members
    – Lots of great activities including an end of night celebration!

    Saturday 23rd January (9.45am – 12.15pm)

    Schedule Includes:
    – The Trip That Inspired It All: Hear from original members from 2011 India trip
    – Workshops with:
    Brian Crockett, author of “The Art of Telling Your Story”
    Ashley Scotland, CEO of Thriving Survivors Scotland
    Emma Musgrave, Partner of Purple Shoots
    -More Stories from our Members, plus an update on WEvo News

    IMPORTANT: Please select your peer gathering workshop for 23 January!

    Tell us which workshop you’d like to attend – they’re all going to be fab! You can only attend one workshop so make sure you only select one option.

    You’ll also receive this link in your booking confirmation email.

    We look forward to seeing you on Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd January!

  • WEvo are hiring!

    Administrator Position

    WEvolution are looking for a new Team Member to fulfil the Administrator Role.  The Job Description and further details can be found here.

    Feel free to share this with anyone who may be interested!

    All enquiries should be sent to Eleanor Campbell at eleanor@wevolution.org.uk

    The closing date is 12.00noon on Thursday, 15th March 2018.

    Shortlisted applicants will be informed by Friday, 16th March 2018.

    Candidates must be available for interview in Glasgow on Monday, 19th March 2018.

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    National Peer Gathering – January 2018

    The national gathering took place at the end of January and marked seven years since the, now famous, group of women from Glasgow first went on that trip to India.  Elaine, who had travelled with that group, joined us and we heard from the Maryhill group, one of our most ‘senior’ SRGs.  There was especial excitement on this occasion because we were joined by new SRG members from Manchester.  Over the last year, the movement has been spreading south of the border, and it was a treat to meet them.
    As ever, it was a boisterous, loving affair.  SRG members from all the Scottish regions turned up ready to hurtle themselves into the day’s activities and to find as many opportunities to connect and seek new ways of working together.  Activities ranged from a crazy selfie station to a serious talk about product development from a key player in Warner Brothers products.  We were treated to a fabulous talk on appreciating and valuing ourselves.  The talk was sprinkled with magic tricks and we enjoyed the opportunity to listen to such a thoughtful presentation delivered with such humour. In the afternoon, we competed with one another to create new companies and to sell to one another. The winner – ‘Miss Fix It’.
    For many, hearing the stories from SRG members was the most powerful part of the day.  One group after another spoke passionately about their groups, their work and their commitment to the movement.  As well as those from south of the border, we heard from recently formed groups in Fife and Renfrewshire.  Visitors to the event talked of being ‘bowled over’ by what they heard.  No wonder – such fabulous people, such fabulous stories.

  • Fire Starter Event 2018

    Self Reliant Young People in Inverclyde and Dundee

    Inverclyde hosted a Fires Starter event on January, 31st at the new Inverclyde Hub.  We invited young people from the ages of 16-30 to come and grow £10 while learning the SRG way of working.  The group shared lots of different thoughts with one another, encouraged each other to come out of their comfort zones by doing their first live social media feeds on Facebook to spread the word on their event.  The group succeeded to making £67, by doing an online raffle for £1 entry to win £20.  This event ignited our community to think what is possible by starting a SRG.

    On the same day, WEvolution hosted young people at a one-off workshop to test what happens when people are challenged with £10 and two hours to turn it into more.

    Starting the day with some group development, playdough monsters taught them that everyone had valuable skills and experiences they could offer the group. Brightly coloured card and post its illustrated the markers of an SRG and how that could help their journey to be productive and supportive.

    When they moved in to ideation, their creativity came thick and fast, answering the question ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if…’ and as they rotated the leader through each activity the group formed confident and articulate suggestions as to what they could do with their £10. Quick decisions were made and energy was high throughout the experience.

    At 12.30pm they received their £10 and the timer was set. Heather bought a £10 Amazon voucher, Kyle designed a Facebook page and logo, and Raffolution was launched. Nicola managed the social media – posting adverts for the raffle, Sam updated the sales and Callum managed the draw. Most of their work was online but in the last 30 minutes, they took to the streets and doubled their profit. By 2.30pm, the group had turned £10 in to £50. Everyone left with a ‘wow’ feeling and a little bit more cash than they arrived with.

    What would you do to turn £10 into more?

     

  • WEvolution Board Trustees

    WEvolution is looking out for three resourceful, influential and imaginative people to join our Board of Trustees in 2018.

    WEvolution is not in the business of doing ordinary work. It has sparked off the imagination of people in communities, groups and agencies with its unique Self-Reliant Groups (SRGs). Simple and deeply impactful, SRGs are about people coming together to take control of their lives and make things including money.

    How we work

    1. By growing a movement of SRGs that nurture an environment of collaboration, creativity and enterprise across communities and organisations in Scotland and the rest of the UK.
    2. By providing small interest-free and/or low-interest capital to people enabling growth of their business ideas through our microfinance initiative.
    3. By designing and delivering a high-quality skills training programme that helps spark off a number of sustainable microenterprises.
    4. By working towards a more enabling policy environment around the expanding SRG movement.

    WEvolution 2.0

    Having started in 2011, WEvolution has now entered a new phase of movement building which includes the scaling of SRGs more strategically across the UK. It is moving towards positioning itself into a ‘Centre for Excellence’ that will provide training, experience and resources to organisations and groups.
    As we work towards these aims, we are looking to find three volunteer Trustees from any of the sectors below:
    Gender: Whilst remaining inclusive, our focus will continue to centre on women. Having someone with a background in women’s socio-economic participation and empowerment; one who understands the barriers and challenges to this and alongside has a breath of experience of working in these areas in voluntary and/or private sector would be a welcome addition to our Board.

    Marketing: We want to work on better understanding our target messages while improving the visibility of our brands. We are looking for expert communication guidance about promoting and identifying these brands (for both WEvolution as a ‘Centre for Excellence’ and SRGs as a ‘movement and market’) across Scotland and the rest of the UK. Preferably someone from marketing, communications and event management backgrounds with experience in the Scottish context would be suitable.

    Economics: We would welcome an Economist with a solid knowledge of and insight into the intricacies of the local economy and enterprise whilst being able to enable WEvolution and SRGs to connect with a national and global context.

    Technology: We are looking for someone who can help WEvolution integrate technological innovations to open up new avenues and economic opportunities for SRGs. Going forward, we would want to be able to use appropriate technology to connect people to form SRGs, link with our microfinancing initiatives, enable groups to save money and reinvest them and create peer-to-peer markets.

    Commercial Finance: Continuing our economic focus, we want someone who can help us think through, whether through the creation of new platforms or building upon existing outlets, relevant financial products. It is a part of the national financial inclusion agenda at the moment and we can make our own unique contribution to this. We, therefore, need someone who either has the experience of doing it or has a range of contacts in the financial industry for this.

    Community Empowerment: We want someone who understands the complexities of working alongside people in communities, has a deep commitment to the power of connections and community building and has made relevant contributions to practice including academic input.

    If you’re intrigued and interested, please drop an email to Noel Mathias, Managing Director (e: noel@wevolution.org.uk) and we’ll take it forward from there.

    For more information on our work, visit our website: www.wevolution.org.uk or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

    You can also read a few snippets about our work in the media below:
    www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-39306627
    www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-19784459
    www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-27166801
    www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/real-life/scots-women-from-deprived-areas-of-glasgow-878201

  • Regional Gathering Inverclyde Dec 2017

    Wow, we are going to be able to get really creative in this space.’ – Christine Thompson, new member

    ‘I am so happy I can bring the kids and they have their own space, so I can get on and work.’- Lorraine Edwards, Outside the Box SRG

    Groups gathered together for the Regional gathering in Inverclyde to have deeper conversations about the growth of the movement and how they were going to gain more ownership of the new space. We also looked at what the new 24/7 creative space was going to look like. Everyone was engaged and came up with innovative ways to explore the possibilities. We then went on to have fun and build relationships; we played a game with cling film wrapped around loads of exciting presents; people would put on a pair of antlers and a red nose, while the music played load, rolling a dice hoping for doubles. The energy in the room was magical with every person laughing. We finished the gathering by sharing a meal together and all pitching in to clean up.

    Great teamwork makes the dream work.

     

     

     

     

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    Tiling in Paisley

    This November at the Paisley hub we combined our endless interest in grabbing every opportunity to learn new skills with our concern about the lack of decent splashback in the kitchen area and hosted a tiling workshop. Cameron Bauer from Building Futures (www.building-futures.org.uk) joined us in Paisley to teach the skills of tiling to an enthusiastic group of SRG members. End result – an elegant splashback. End result – competent trained women. “Better than housework” was the verdict.

    In 2018 we will continue to work with Cameron to support SRG members to develop the skills that will take them into various construction industries.

  • SRGs in Castlemilk welcome The Moderator from The Church of Scotland

    The Church of Scotland has continued to be one of our biggest supporters and advocates for the Self-Reliant movement across Scotland and Last week the SRGs were delighted to welcome the Moderator for the Church of Scotland, Dr Derek Browning. Our hosts for the afternoon were two SRGs who organised and welcomed both the moderator and staff from WEvolution.

    It was a fantastic afternoon where we heard more about why we do what we do at WEvolution from Lorna, our SRG coordinator for Glasgow, and just how Self-Reliant Groups have inspired us to continue to be bold in our message. That we trust in peoples own abilities to know what is best for them and that by creating an enable and creating environment people thrive by taking the lead and turning their lives around.

  • Paisley Hub: A Fitting Enterprise!

    Our new SRG hub in Paisley is close to completion following a flurry of activity with help from our friends, the Edinburgh Tool Library, and much wielding of paint brush, rollers, hammers and saws by SRG members and volunteers. We transformed twenty grubby looking pallets into smart retro tables and benches and the mottled walls into shining white. That annoying roller blind works now, the kitchen area is smart and welcoming and we are planning our grand opening.

    Several people have popped in to ask what we’re up to and a couple of folk dropped in to help us crowbar bits of the pallets and bash out the nails. For sure we worked hard and it has a great feeling of a joint enterprise. The hub will reflect the talent and resource we bring to Renfrewshire. This will be a working space for SRGs to develop and sell their products, a place where they will meet and connect and make big plans for the future. Our notice on the window said: “Exciting things planned here”. Those passing SAW exciting things going on – sanding and demolishing and building. How good to showcase our capacity to sparkle in the more traditionally ‘male’ areas of work!

  • Are You Ready to Make the Next Leap?

    One of the challenges for any new business is finding time to think about your business while also keeping the momentum of growth, being creative and running the business. The saying is you end up working in the business and not on it.

    You initially have lists of things to do, such as buying stock, researching potential customers, social media and promoting your products, but how do you get new sales and start to grow? There is so much to do, it’s hard to make the time to reflect on your business and develop new idea.

    At WEvolution we offer support to get you to the next stage of business growth through The Leap Programme. You will be matched with a mentor for 6 months, enabling you to talk through new ideas, learn from others and plan the next step for your business. Our mentors are experienced business women who can relate to you individually to allow you to develop skills to help your business grow. They are able to meet you face-to-face, over Skype or phone at times to suit your current situation.

    Gillian, 5 Mummies Make SRG, recently went through the programme, “Since beginning the Leap Programme with my mentor I have grown immensely in confidence in my products. Working with Alison has enabled me to have more faith in my work and price products accordingly. I have become more efficient in my productivity through support with scheduling tasks and setting deadlines. I am able to bounce ideas off a person with an array of knowledge in different business settings that has dramatically altered the way I view and run my small handmade bespoke card business ‘Handmade by Gillian Miller‘”

    If you are interested in taking part on this free programme, please contact your local Development Coordinator who will be happy to chat over the criteria with you.

    Julie Hall