Deep Change: Regenerative Activism. A 4-week online series.

Activism & Leadership, Health & Wellbeing

Deep Change: Regenerative Activism. A 4-week Online Series.

Regenerative Activism Online Event with Ulex Project, Ann Pettifor, Shaun Chamberlin, Global Justice Now - Nick Dearden, Paul Powlesland, Maria Llanos del Corral, Fran Boait, Christabel Reed, Gita Parihar, Ruby Reed & 12 more

A gathering held by Zoom over 4 consecutive Thursdays exploring how we respond to the challenges of our time for deep change at every level.

Thursday 7th May to Thursday 28th May, 2020 Online

Book Now

1586945298 010a5517.jpg?w=1000&h=666

We are living at a critical moment which contains both great peril and promise. The challenges we face are simultaneously socio-political, cultural and spiritual. It is a historical point of disruption demanding radical transformation.

The fierce urgency of the climate crisis, combined with the twilight of neoliberalism, impoverished political leadership, and an increasing sense of distributive injustice, are the cracks out of which something new must emerge.

The times are calling for renewed energy and adaptive capacities. To meet this crisis, we need strategies for deep change on multiple levels.

To answer this call we are bringing together activists, doers and thinkers who are trying to get under the surface of crisis, people who are asking deeper questions and constructing deeper responses.

This is the third in a series of annual ‘Regenerative Activism’ gatherings convened and hosted by Advaya, Ulex Project and Gita Parihar. This year it will be held online over 4 weeks exploring:

  • Session 1: New Economy and Systemic Transformation
  • Session 2: Climate Justice: Identity, History and Power
  • Session 3: Rights of Nature: Law and the More-than-Human
  • Session 4: Resilience in times of Uncertainty

We will be joined by:

Aesha Francis, Urban Mindfulness Foundation
Ann Pettifor, political economist
Anthea Lawson, Perspectiva
Carlotta Byrne, Gaia Foundation
Christabel Reed, Advaya & Eco Resolution
Dean Francis, Urban Mindfulness Foundation
Eweryst Zaremba, Ulex Project
Fran Boait, Positive Money
Gita Parihar, Environmental Lawyer
Gee, Ulex Project
Hiba Ahmad, Our Future Now
Jyoti Fernandes, Land Workers Alliance & La Via Campesina
Laura Guarch, Thalweg
Maria Llanos del Corral, La Bolina
Nick Dearden, Global Justice Now
Paul Powlesland, Barrister & Lawyers for Nature
Rachel Kennerley, Friends of the Earth
Ruby Reed, Advaya & Eco Resolution
Shaun Chamberlin, Dark Optimism
Sheila Menon, Ulex Project & Plane Stupid
Shivali Fulchand, The Stolen River Campaign

Through the series we will:

Bring together people immersed in tackling the climate crisis, activists working on radical alternatives and pragmatic responses, and those creating new stories for deep cultural regeneration.
Look for new understanding at the intersection between hard political realities and paradigm shifting insights.
Seek to go beyond radical critique to find pathways for radically transformative action.

A note on tickets:

Eventbrite allows you to choose a relevant date, but tickets gives you access to all 4 evenings regardless of what day it states on the ticket. We will send the zoom links to the email you use here, so please use a correct address.

Pricing is tiered. The ‘pay-it-forward’ ticket is an option for those who find themselves in a position to support the event. It allows us to charge a low price as standard, and opens access to activists and those on a low income to attend. This is a non-profit collaborative gathering.

Scroll down for event and participant information.


Why this gathering?

Although we can see that “the old is dying and the new cannot be born,” the contest for our future is very much alive. But do we have the depth of analysis we need? Can we strategise effectively amidst such complexity? Can we find the deeper resources we need to face the steep climb or descent ahead? How can we realise the deep shifts in both socio-political structure and in consciousness that this crisis asks for?

The patterns and symptoms are clear enough: The once looming collision with non-negotiable ecological limits is now here; the previously indomitable expansion of neoliberalism has stalled; the confluence of post-democracy and big data threatens a shocking political impotence; nationalist populism turns against international solidarity. These are symptoms of a profound dysfunctionality.

Beneath the symptoms lie the mutually interdependent conditions of socio-economic structures, needs, mindsets and world-views - that together entrench the failing system. The deep change we need involves transformative strategies that address both structure and consciousness.

About the sessions:

These sessions explore four core dimensions of structural change we need and the deep shifts in worldview and consciousness they depend upon:

Thursday 7th May:

Session 1: New Economy and Systemic Transformation

Ann Pettifor, an architect of the Green New Deal says, “We can choose to survive. But in order to survive, everything must change. Everything”. This is the scale of the challenge that new economic thinking and radical collective action needs to face. The structure of our economic system, driving both environmental destruction and social fragmentation, needs a radical overhaul. This panel brings together activists and thinkers who are facing the scale of that challenge. Each of them is developing inspiring approaches to systemic transformation, asking deep questions about the assumptions and beliefs that drive the system and the specific structural changes that are needed.

Participants: Ruby Reed, Ann Pettifor, Shaun Chamberlin, Fran Boait.

Thursday 14th May

Session 2: Climate Justice: Identity, History and Power

The climate crisis is as much about power and politics as it is about the environment. This session explores the challenges involved in ensuring climate justice and designing a just transition beyond our carbon-belching system for all communities and workers. How can we achieve the changes required in a way that promotes justice and equality by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing the historic oppression of frontline and vulnerable communities and countries? How can we ensure that the structural transformation required doesn’t strengthen the hand of those who already use their power to exploit and oppress? Understanding the power dynamics of race, class, gender and our economic and political systems – both locally and globally – are crucial to building a climate justice movement. It involves reconstructing our identities, building renewed understanding of our histories, and re-forging our socio-political relationships.

Participants: Gita Parihar, Hiba Ahmad, Nick Dearden, Sheila Menon, Rachel Kennerley.

Thursday 21st May

Session 3: Rights of Nature: Law and the More-than-Human

Arguably, the view that humans are at the centre of things, above and superior to all that is non-human, is one of the fundamental flaws at the heart of our dysfunctional civilisation. And yet so much of our society is grounded in this assumption. In various ways, these speakers are all working at the edge of our understanding of agency, personhood and the extension of legal and cultural frameworks to embrace a fuller understanding of who we are and our relationship to nature. What might society and our legal system look like when we recognise rivers as sacred, forests as an aspect of our own breathing, and humans as plain members of the earth community? Where do such worldviews already exist? How might a radical shift in our society that redefines what it is to have sentience change our culture and translate into concrete frameworks for protecting and asserting the rights of nature?

Participants: Gita Parihar, Carlotta Byrne, Shivali Fulchand, Paul Powlesland and Laura Guarch.

Thursday 28th May

Session 4: Resilience in times of Uncertainty

These are probably the most important years in our history. We’re facing the gnarly, and interlinked problems of climate crisis, stark inequality and a post-democratic reality. Earth’s life support systems are under attack, while authoritarian, racist and intolerant nationalist populism is on the rise. Our survival involves deep transformation and a shift beyond the failing capitalist system that underpins our extractive and destructive economy. How can we sustain ourselves through this time? How can we enable our activism to be a source of flourishing, for ourselves and society as a whole? We will dig deep into key questions and practices for a truly regenerative activism.

Participants: Gee, Aesha Francis, Dean Francis, Eweryst Zaremba, Anthea Lawson, Jyoti Fernandes, Maria Llanos del Corral.

PARTICIPANTS:

Aesha Francis, Urban Mindfulness Foundation
Dean and Aesha Francis are co-founders of the Urban Mindfulness Foundation, a not-for-profit social enterprise providing free mindfulness training courses to those normally unable to afford personal development training. Every course is underpinned by an ethos of developing a socially focused mindfulness practice that places the emphasis on radical inclusion and collaboration designed to help embrace the challenges of urban living. Dean is also a trained Environmental Scientist and with Aesha runs an Environmental Consultancy. Dean was a member of a Government Advisory Group for over 10 years and with Aesha, co-created the Mindfulness Based Inclusion Training programme (MBIT). Both are studying mindfulness at Master level with the University of Aberdeen and mix formal environmental training with mindfulness training that provides a foundation of understanding our relationships to self, others, the rest of nature, the environment and the importance of interdependence, coexistence and symbiosis that runs deep into a social mindfulness practice and life itself.

Ann Pettifor, Political Economist

Ann Pettifor is a British economist who advises governments and organisations. She has published several books, including The Case for the Green New Deal. She was a key member of the working group developing the idea of the Green New Deal since 2007, an idea that is currently providing the central framework for progressive policy development aimed at a just transition beyond fossil fuel dependence. Her work focuses on the global financial system, sovereign debt restructuring, international finance and sustainable development.

Carlotta Byrne, The Gaia Foundation

Carlotta Byrne coordinates the Earth Jurisprudence Programme at The Gaia Foundation. She accompanies a growing network of Earth Jurisprudence Practitioners in Africa who are working at a local, national and regional level to revive Earth-centred governance on the continent. She originally trained as a lawyer specialising in dispute resolution. Disillusioned by a legal system destructively out-of-step with the laws of Nature and in pursuit of a more Earth-centred life, she swapped desk and screen for soil and scythe to study and work in the horticulture department at Schumacher College. During her time as a community food grower and course facilitator at the College, Carlotta explored indigenous cosmologies, deep ecology and alternatives to the industrial growth economy.

Dean Francis, Urban Mindfulness Foundation
Dean and Aesha Francis are co-founders of the Urban Mindfulness Foundation, a not-for-profit social enterprise providing free mindfulness training courses to those normally unable to afford personal development training. Every course is underpinned by an ethos of developing a socially focused mindfulness practice that places the emphasis on radical inclusion and collaboration designed to help embrace the challenges of urban living. Dean is also a trained Environmental Scientist and with Aesha runs an Environmental Consultancy. Dean was a member of a Government Advisory Group for over 10 years and with Aesha, co-created the Mindfulness Based Inclusion Training programme (MBIT). Both are studying mindfulness at Master level with the University of Aberdeen and mix formal environmental training with mindfulness training that provides a foundation of understanding our relationships to self, others, the rest of nature, the environment and the importance of interdependence, coexistence and symbiosis that runs deep into a social mindfulness practice and life itself.

Eweryst Zaremba, Ulex Project

As a social activist and trainer, and a member of SPINA trainer’s for social change collective and European Action for Youth (EYFA) network, Ewe leads trainings on group dynamics, consensus decision making, conflict resolution and sustainable activism. Their work is primarily with grassroots groups involved in social and environmental struggles, as well as NGOs working in the areas of social and environmental justice, in Poland and internationally. Ewe is deeply committed to the work and involved also in trauma and emotional support for grassroots activists, currently dedicating most of their time to feminist, trans* and queer struggles through writing, performing and leading workshops. Ewe is also a WenDo trainer – a self defense and self assertiveness method for women and trans* people and they are passionate about working with body awarenesses and different bodywork methods as a radical mean of deconstructing internalized systems of oppression. They are a member of the Ulex core team.

Fran Boait, Positive Money

Fran Boait is the Executive Director of Positive Money, a non-profit think tank, which campaigns for systemic change of the money and banking system to support a fair, sustainable, and democratic economy. Positive Money Europe launched in 2018, and Positive Money US is being set up. Fran is a Senior Fellow at the Finance Innovation Lab, and an Adviser at Avon Mutual Bank, she advised Rethinking Economics, CommonWealth, and sat on several Boards including Finance Watch. Fran is also a qualified kundalini yoga teacher. Fran stood as the Labour Party candidate in Gloucester in the last UK general election, prior to 2016 she was a Green party member. Fran has written for the Guardian, Red Pepper, Open Democracy, and recently the Alternative.

Gee, Ulex Project

Gee is a member of the Ulex Project collective, which runs a Europe-wide activist training programme. As the Ulex Programme Director he shapes the training programme in response to the ever-changing challenges and opportunities facing progressive movements across the continent. He is currently focused on developing practices that contribute to the health of social movement ecology, exploring the relationships between the multiple roles and strategies that our movements involve. His training work is grounded in the concept of Integral Activism, which takes and integrated approach to transformative learning at the personal, interpersonal and political levels.

Gita Parihar, Environmental Lawyer

Gita was Head of Legal at Friends of the Earth until July 2016 and has spent 15 years working with and for campaigning organisations, using her skills as a solicitor to bring environmental cases and advise at international negotiations on issues like climate change. This gives her a deep familiarity with the rewards and challenges of environmental activism. Alongside her legal work, Gita is passionate about exploring approaches to saving the planet that sustain us as human beings. Gita is a trustee of the UKYCC and the Climate Justice Fund and currently studying for an MA in Spirituality and Ecology at Schumacher college.

Hiba Ahmad, Our Future Now

Hiba Ahmad is a climate justice activist at Our Future Now. She organises against climate ignorance and green colonialism and for social justice for all

*Jyoti Fernandes, La Via Campesina & Land Worker’s Alliance *

Jyoti is the Chair person and Campaigns Coordinator of La Via Campesina & Land Worker’s Alliance and is currently working on a campaign to influence DEFRA to adopt more policies to promote food sovereignty. Jyoti works to represent small-scale producers around Europe in the European and Global agricultural institutions. She is also a Dorset smallholder farmer on a 20 acre low impact holding with Jersey cows, goats, pigs, vegetables and apple juice, cider cheese, and other processed products. She is also a butcher, and land rights activist (mostly helping people gain planning permission).

Laura Gaurch, Thalweg

Laura Guarch is a singer, composer, performance maker and workshop leader from Catalonia based in the UK. Her research and practice focuses on creating choral and sonic interventions in public space that challenge social perceptions of place and environment. She creates site-specific and participatory performances, facilitates voice and creativity workshops and sings on a number of London-based choirs, bands and ensembles. She recently presented creative work for Spitalfields Music Open Call, Totally Thames and National Trust and toured her vocal looping project ‘Street Vocals’ widely around Europe. As co-director of the artistic company Convex, she has developed Thalweg, a participatory performance project on river rights that led to a collective singing promenade along the Thames last year. Thalweg invited Londoners in their diversity to reconnect spiritually with their river.

Maria Llanos del Corral, La Bolina

María is a social psychologist with an MA in International Cooperation. She worked in this field for 8 years with the Red Cross in Peru, Malawi, Niger and Spain in the fields of community development, economic development, strengthening civil society and education. María shifted into being an organisational change consultant and facilitator after a Masters in “Economics for Transition” at Schumacher College, where she realised the importance of shifting the paradigm from where we act in the world in order to co-create a sustainable future. She is a specialist in applying complex living systems theory and collaborative methodologies focusing on leadership, values, culture creation and the structures and methodologies needed in our organisations to better understand and thrive within the complex, changeable and uncertain reality we live in. Some of her published work includes: Collaborative tools for Social Organisations and Activism and Spirituality.

Nick Dearden, Global Justice Now

As Director of Global Justice Now, Nick manages the staff team and resources on behalf of Global Justice Now’s members. He is also the public face of the organisation. Nick started his career at War on Want where he became a senior campaigner. He went on to be corporates campaign manager at Amnesty International UK. As director of the Jubilee Debt Campaign, he built strong relationships with campaigners in the global south. He helped win a new law to stop Vulture Funds from using UK courts to squeeze huge debt payments out of poor countries. Nick joined Global Justice Now in September 2013.

Paul Powlesland, Lawyers for Nature

After practising as a barrister in London for a decade, Paul realised the urgent need to create greater respect and protection for the natural world within our legal system. He therefore founded Lawyers for Nature to represent the natural world and all who are seeking to defend it. He writes and speaks on legal rights for the natural world, as well as representing the natural world (including trees and rivers) in the courts as best he can within the current legal framework. He has a natural affinity for water, lives on a boat and has founded a community project to restore a river in East London.

Rachel Kennerley, Friends of the Earth

Rachel Kennerley is an International Climate Campaigner at Friends of the Earth.

*Shaun Chamberlin, Dark Optimism *

Shaun Chamberlin has been involved with the Transition Network since its inception, authoring the movement’s second book, The Transition Timeline. He is managing director of the Fleming Policy Centre and former chair of the Ecological Land Co-operative. In exploring the cultural narratives charting society’s course he has written and edited a diverse publications, including Surviving the Future: Culture, Carnival, and Capital in the Aftermath of the Market Economy, with his close friend and regular collaborator David Fleming. His website is www.darkoptimism.org.

*Sheila Menon, Ulex Project & Plane Stupid *

Sheila currently lives in Catalunya working for Ulex, coordinating some of the partner organisations who send participants to Ulex courses, and taking a lead role in developing capacity to support training for PoC activists. Prior to joining Ulex her activism was primarily focused in the UK around grassroots organising in the climate movement, on issues such as anti-fracking, anti-aviation and anti-oil-sponsorship, as well as supporting the movement to end mass detention and forced deportation.

Shivali Fulchand

Shivali is a junior doctor and has taken a year out of clinical practice after selection for a national medical leadership fellowship. She is based as an editor at The BMJ and one of her key responsibilities is to co-ordinate the ‘Year of Climate Change’. Within her faith community, Shivali works to engage youth members with environmental issues. She is also the London Project Co-ordinator of ‘The Bhumi Project’, a global platform representing the Hindu voice on environmental issues.

About the Organisers:

Advaya Initiative

Advaya Initiative is an alternative think-tank seeking solutions to the interconnected crises of environmental destruction and mental health. We see the crises we are faced with today as a call to radical action: an opportunity to evolve, to come together and co-create. We inspire and empower young people and change makers to become activists for a better world, addressing narratives of disempowerment and exploring how to lead authentic lives in harmony with nature. We seek transformation at an individual and collective level while cultivating purposeful lives of connection and belonging.

Ulex Project

A hub of collaboration, the Ulex Project is run by Col·lectiu Eco-Actiu, a non-profit involved in the design and delivery of residential trainings since 2008. Ulex Project believe that connectivity is a key to cognitive vitality and learning. Diversity is crucial to resilience and adaptive capacity. We live at a time where social and ecological challenges require a shift from atomised individualism to networks of solidarity. It implies a new collectivity which still honours individuality. It requires cooperation balanced with autonomy. Ulex thrives on connectivity and seeks to be a reference for value based collaboration. Ulex establish partnerships with organisations across Europe and internationally. They bring diverse groups and individuals together in learning communities. They support organisations, groups, and individuals to foster collaborations, build networks, share experience, and deepen movement resilience through meaningful connection.

Gita Parihar, Environmental Lawyer

Gita was Head of Legal at Friends of the Earth until July 2016 and has spent 15 years working with and for campaigning organisations, using her skills as a solicitor to bring environmental cases and advise at international negotiations on issues like climate change. This gives her a deep familiarity with the rewards and challenges of environmental activism. Alongside her legal work, Gita is passionate about exploring approaches to saving the planet that sustain us as human beings. Gita is a trustee of the UKYCC and the Climate Justice Fund and currently studying for an MA in Spirituality and Ecology at Schumacher college.

Thursday 7th May to Thursday 28th May, 2020 Online

Book Now

Regenerative Activism

A series of annual conferences in collaboration with Ulex Project exploring activism for radical transformation.

Browse all Regenerative Activism events

Ulex Project #

A hub of collaboration, the Ulex Project is run by Col·lectiu Eco-Actiu, a non-profit involved in the design and delivery of residential training since 2008.

Read Ulex Project’s profile

Ann Pettifor #

Ann Pettifor is a political economist, author and public speaker on the global financial & economic system, on money, monetary policy (in particular interest rates), and on the UK economy.

Read Ann Pettifor’s profile

Shaun Chamberlin #

Shaun explores the dominant cultural stories and ‘myths’ that chart the course for our society and, in particular, how we might change direction before we end up where we are headed.

Read Shaun Chamberlin’s profile

Global Justice Now - Nick Dearden #

GJN is a democratic social justice organisation working as part of a global movement to challenge the powerful and create a more just and equal world.

Read Global Justice Now - Nick Dearden’s profile

Paul Powlesland #

Paul is a civil barrister, environmental activist and storyteller

Read Paul Powlesland’s profile

Maria Llanos del Corral #

Maria is a specialist in applying complex living systems theory in our organisations to better understand and thrive within the complex, changeable and uncertain reality we live in.

Read Maria Llanos del Corral’s profile

Fran Boait #

Fran is standing to become the next Labour MP for Gloucester and is Executive Director of Positive Money, a non-profit think tank, which campaigns for systemic change of the money and banking system to support a fair, sustainable, and democratic economy.

Read Fran Boait’s profile

Christabel Reed #

Christabel Reed is a yoga teacher and yoga therapist trained in Hatha, Ayurveda and the lineage of Krishnamacharya and Sri Desikachar. At the heart of her practice and teaching is the exploration of how we can come back to our most natural state — to our wholeness.

Read Christabel Reed’s profile

Gita Parihar #

Gita was Head of Legal at Friends of the Earth until July 2016 and has spent 12 years working with and for campaigning organisations, using her skills as a solicitor to bring environmental cases and advise at international negotiations on issues like climate change. This gives her a deep familiarity with the rewards and challenges of environmental activism. Alongside her legal work, Gita is passionate about exploring approaches to saving the planet that sustain us as human beings. Gita is a trustee of the UKYCC and the Climate Justice Fund and currently studying for an MA in Spirituality and Ecology at Schumacher college.

Read Gita Parihar’s profile

Ruby Reed #

Ruby is an activist, catalyst, connector and organiser inspired by communities coming together to create change.

Read Ruby Reed’s profile

Carlotta Byrne #

Carlotta Byrne coordinates the Earth Jurisprudence Programme at The Gaia Foundation.

Read Carlotta Byrne’s profile

Hiba Ahmad #

Hiba Ahmad is a climate justice activist at Our Future Now.

Read Hiba Ahmad’s profile

Laura Guarch #

Laura Guarch is a singer, composer, performance maker and workshop leader from Catalonia based in the UK.

Read Laura Guarch’s profile

Sheila Menon #

Sheila currently lives in Catalunya working for Ulex, coordinating some of the partner organisations who send participants to Ulex courses, and taking a lead role in developing capacity to support training for PoC activists. Prior to joining Ulex her activism was primarily focused in the UK around grassroots organising in the climate movement, on issues such as anti-fracking, anti-aviation and anti-oil-sponsorship, as well as supporting the movement to end mass detention and forced deportation.

Read Sheila Menon’s profile

Shivali Fulchand #

Shivali is a junior doctor and has taken a year out of clinical practice after selection for a national medical leadership fellowship

Read Shivali Fulchand’s profile

Rachel Kennerley #

Rachel Kennerley is an International Climate Campaigner at Friends of the Earth.

Read Rachel Kennerley’s profile

Anthea Lawson #

Anthea Lawson leads the Beyond Activism initiative at Perspectiva. Troubled by the ways in which campaigning sometimes replicates what it tries to change, she is working to enquire into the inner life of activism and what it means for our efforts to change the outer world in which we live. Anthea trained and worked as a reporter at The Times, then did investigations into the arms trade and corruption in the natural resource industries for campaigning organisations such as Amnesty International and Global Witness. Following an investigation into how the finance sector fuels grand corruption, she launched an award-winning campaign for transparency in company ownership, which – with the hard work of many other activists – has resulted in new laws in 42 countries. She is still campaigning to get a pelican crossing installed at the end of her road.

Read Anthea Lawson’s profile

Gee (Guhyapati) #

Guhyapati has been spearheading a pioneering Eco-Dharma community in the Pyrenees for many years, and wants to see some of the principles of that movement brought to bear in our own lives of practice, giving rise to new projects that will re-shape the personal, economic, political and ecological landscape of the 21st Century.

Read Gee (Guhyapati)’s profile

Eweryst Zaremba #

Eweryst is a member of the Ulex core team. They are leading on a Ulex Project programme working on psychosocial resilience within LGBTQI+ networks in Central and Eastern Europe, where these groups are increasingly attacked as part of growing national populist strategies.

Read Eweryst Zaremba’s profile

Dean Francis #

Dean and Aesha Francis are co-founders of the Urban Mindfulness Foundation, a not-for-profit social enterprise providing free mindfulness training courses to those normally unable to afford personal development training.

Read Dean Francis’s profile

Aesha Francis #

Dean and Aesha Francis are co-founders of the Urban Mindfulness Foundation, a not-for-profit social enterprise providing free mindfulness training courses to those normally unable to afford personal development training.

Read Aesha Francis’s profile

Jyoti Fernandes #

Chair person and Campaigns Coordinator, Via Campesina & Land Worker’s Alliance Jyoti is a campaigns coordinator currently working on a campaign to influence DEFRA to adopt more policies to promote food sovereignty.

Read Jyoti Fernandes’s profile