A history of Cardiff Transition
Cardiff Transition began in 2007/8 – here is a brief breakdown of efforts undertaken by Cardiff Transition in that period:
In 2008, with a full blown recession causing havoc across our country. Thousands of communities across UK and world feel quite threatened with record job losses, bankruptcies, disruption in public services and a real feeling of social isolation affecting too many good people.
Volunteers from across your city realised that an entity was required to address how to get communities functioning again – so Cardiff Transition was quietly launched with a view to find out who could contribute to getting a Transition group established to help Cardiff.
In 2009, launch of East Cardiff Transition helped bring a lot of people together. Although East CT was dissolved soon after, it was a good platform for many of us to be introduced to each other and begin to collaborate on a small level with each other until larger collaborations built up over the years.
In conjunction with Chapter, an arts centre in Canton, Cardiff: we ran a week-long film festival around the themes of peak oil and climate change, incorporating a series of well-attended discussion events. Following the interest these events created, Cardiff Transition invited Rob Hopkins to speak at Cardiff’s Temple of Peace in March 2009.
The amazing Cardiff Rivers Group launched. They did exactly what they said on the tin. The litter problems on many waterways across Cardiff were annoying a lot of residents – so they set up a group to begin a long term clean up voluntary activity group. Within five years they have won The Queens Award for Voluntary Services. It proves what Cardiff people are capable of when they build something positive out of absolutely nothing.
Following this event in 2010; the project expanded its membership and organised into geographical groups, which then began running projects, some of which were rooted in particular communities and others which operated city-wide. Examples include Cardiff Orchard (mapping fruit and nut trees on public and private land across the city), Canton Carbon Cutters (promoting energy efficiency), Feed the 500 (using “waste” food from supermarkets to cook a free curry for 500 people) and the Cardiff Taffs Community Currency. Awareness raising continued via a series of speakers’ events and public talks showcasing the progress of individual projects.
In 2011, Cardiff transition was formally registered with the Transition Network and soon after original TN founder Rob Hopkins was invited to give a talk to Cardiff Transition volunteers at the Temple of Peace.
In 2012, the Sustainable Cardiff Mapping initiative was launched to encourage all positive community/sustainable activities to be listed on the open source Green Maps made available to everyone across the world (with internet access).
Event at City Hall as part of Cardiff one world City fair, Cardiff Transition was represented showing people the new mapping exercise and the purpose of highlighting all the positive sustainable community driven activities and groups across Cardiff.
Videos were made for the likes of Sustainable Mapping, Cardiff Taffs Community Currency, Riverside Market Garden, Cardiff Transition and Sustainable Cardiff in the hope of encouraging more people to partake.
The Facebook and Twitter pages continued to grow. These are the main staples of communication which as an umbrella body – Cardiff Transition (we) hope to gain several thousand followers of Cardiff’s 375,000 (approx.) population – to try and disseminate information and links to everyone in your respective communities.
In 2013 many mapping walks continued with a different part of Cardiff targeted each time. This was a massive task for so many volunteers and we are grateful for the new friends gained out of these activities and the opportunity to tell everyone about sustainable/community related activities in their areas, that might be of interest to them.
In 2014 all groups linked that Cardiff Transition were honoured to have links with; all quietly percolated and found new volunteers, supporters and contributors and have all slowly evolved with an objective perspective of ‘are we doing what’s right for community?’ and ‘how can we progress appropriately (involving everyone in the process)?‘
In 2015 Cardiff Transition quietly reflected on recent years learning arcs, see what new strategies can be utilised so that we can support the Cardiff wide social/public/volunteer sustainable network.
Cardiff Men in Sheds launched. Cardiff’s version of the amazing global phenomenon of Men in Shed‘s where the 50+ man can join a group to hone his skills. Activities such as rejuvenating/restoring old classic cars etc. it is an opportunity for men to share tools, skills and resources in an environment to retain and improve our skills.
As UK is facing a skills deficit, it is important that entities such as Cardiff Men in Sheds exist, so that these skills can be disseminated downwards to successive generations.
The core group is at its largest and we hope to continue to expand this so that representatives from food, community, volunteering, renewables, housing efficiencies etc. are all involved.
Continue rebuilding new website, encourage more people to list their regular activities to go on calendar/directory as to encourage more traffic to be driven to all these amazing groups across Cardiff and get more people to attend groups across Cardiff to join your groups.
Expand network within all of Cardiff. Work better with district entities such as Grangetown Community, Tongwynlais.com, Made in Roath, Your Cathays – and help Splott, Adamsdown, Butetown with their respective community/district wide entities to support sustainable community initiatives in their respective districts.
VOLUNTEER BURN OUT:
Why so many of us go wrong a national level of community/volunteering activities – those lovely people at central Transition Network produced this page which we strongly encourage everyone to read: We have all been guilty of this which is why Cardiff Transition has had it’s up’s and down’s.
In 2017 – support existing groups and practices as well as support newly formed grass shoots groups….
In 2018 – support existing groups and practices as well as support newly formed grass shoots groups….
In 2019 – support existing groups and practices as well as support newly formed grass shoots groups….
Reflect on 2010’s – how did things function/perform? what learning arcs from gain and failure were made?
What plan for the 2020’s – activities for more community empowerment and independence on water, food, housing, energy and local resource network?
What can be done to reduce flooding and drought risks?