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Ansicht ArtikelAlfonso Flaquer on GEN Europe's Council: The Challenges That Lie Ahead
datetimelong - 4 Jahre, 8 Monate her - Gemeinschaften (EN) - GEN Europe (englisch)
Now that the new GEN Europe Council will soon be chosen, I think it is convenient to share some of the thoughts that haunt me as a counselor so the members could have more information on our role. I have already expressed on occasion that only a few members know the complexity of the entire GEN structure we have been building over the years in the communities and the ecovillage movement; two among those exceptional persons, Kosha Joubert and Ulrike Schimmel, who were undoubtedly the most important pillars in recent times, withdrew from the network's staff positions only to be involved in other positions. The new headquarters of GEN Europe are situated in Arterra community, Navarra, Spain, and hence a new team of interns, volunteers and staff is being set up. That is to say, over the course of a few months, GEN Europe has been undergoing almost complete reshaping of the leading roles that support the activities of our European network. A turning point, undoubtedly. In other words, the scenario that the new Council is going to find is the following: one of the major collateral damages of the policy we have pursued (intense work both in terms of energy and economy in the birth of GEN Africa, NextGEN and GEN International) is that we have "neglected" the relationship between our members and internal communication has suffered. The network has gained public recognition, we presently have 5 active regions and even a presence in Brussels, more and more opportunities for our projects, but the awareness of the impact that this has caused or the benefit it has brought in our ecovillage network is very diverse. A couple of years ago I pointed out the difficulty amongst many members to identify themselves with a network whose communication is written down in a language unknown to the majority of our population. But besides language barriers, the emergence of the national networks and the prominence to which they are rising in our development as a network introduces a new scenario. During our mandate, the Council noted with interest and admiration the strength and energy that are present in national networks' meetings, but with some surprise and perplexity when new voices wanting to change everything there, as is usual in any new group. But there are none so deaf as those who will not hear, as my grandmother used to say... The debate over whether GEN Europe is an organization of ecovillages that know each other or should it be a national ecovillage network is on the table. Bon apéttit! Another important matter that should be considered by the new Council has to do with the transformation undergone by GEN Europe’s structure with the emergence of GEN International. The current GEN Europe Council decided to lift several of our European work areas (communication and design, web, education, outreach, ...) to be taken over by the GEN International Working Groups: the idea behind this decision was to achieve the desired and necessary cohesion of our message globally. Thus, some of our members and volunteers working in GEN Europe have come to work in GEN International. The result is that just when we are succeeding socially, we find fewer local human and structural resources. We urgently need to design and reinvigorate ties with members to make more people interested in helping out in our organization now that institutions and politicians finally turn to us for help and guidance. And we need help to spread our development model so that we have hundreds of new initiatives established on our continent. The Incubator Ecovillage, a project creating a new tool that is spreading from RIVE and RIE at a global level, can be a good working direction for the support and care of new projects. In conclusion, GEN Europe faces a time of major change that will need a good team of people in the Council to guide the network during this transition. Do not fail to attend the various open forums that we have prepared for the occasion to find the best way to choose the new counselors. It's time to take a step forward.
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