WWOOFing it Up in Kiwiland: organic farming in New Zealand 2012

3 years later and life brings me back to New Zealand. This time for a longer period, for a different purpose, with a different outlook on life than last time. I hope what transpires from a few years of travelling as far and as wide as possible across this beautiful country is a basic but decent knowledge and experience in organic farming, self sustainable living, and food production. Come and join me, there's loads of room in the car.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Super-size Me: Is Bigger, Really Better, for Auckland City?

"What all sectors have in common is a growing understanding that the outcomes they're interested in are dependent on engaging local residents to solve problems in local communities. Government, universities, and health systems are all rethinking their relationships to community people, seeing them not just as recipients of services but real co-producers and partners in attaining these desired outcomes." John Kretzmen on Asset-Based Community Development. 

This CC4A meeting was attended by numerous groups and individuals concerned with the effects of the centralisation of government and power on local communities, including the local deputy mayor of Waitakere City; locals; and mostly non-statutory agencies. It was hosted by Community Waitakere and held in the Corban Arts Etate.
And in direct opposition to this... I recieved this email this morning:
Saturday, September 12, 12.30pm, Assemble Myers Park (off Upper Queen St) to Britomart.

Protest government cuts to night classes: March from Myers Park to Britomart. The government cut 80% of the funding for night classes in this year's budget. From next year most of the 212 schools around the country will cease their night class programmes and more than 200,000 New Zealanders will miss the opportunity to learn new skills, take up hobbies, meet and mix as community members etc. Night classes have been a New Zealand tradition going back 100 years. Join the fightback to preserve adult and community education.

This is Ethan, the 16 month son of the couple whose my homestay. He has more wisdom than us adults sometimes. Live life simply and live it to the full. Most children, unless severely abused, ususally have this predisposition. Adults have a lot to learn from them. Saying that, crying in the middle of the night and throwing food around is not something I'd recommend we take on regularly.

Apparently the money is going to children's classes...have you heard about that riddle of the Man and child in the desert. They're stranded in the desert with one bottle of water, enough for only one of them to travel to civilisation to get help. What's the answer? The same answer the air steward's give you for putting on your overhead breathing mask if you are responsible for a child...
In response to that, I say that I have met some children and young people who live their lives with more principle than some adults. Physical age, just like race, gender, and all other divisive labels, is not indicative of a person's wisdom or strength of character. General rules, like one size, never fits all.
With regards to the super-city, centralisation of government will have its winners and its losers, its benefits and disadvantages, depending on who you are, what you do, where your money comes from and a multitude of other factors. It's part and parcel of that all encompassing process of 'change'. The more accurate question therefore is: 'Who are the winners in the new super-city and is it for the greater good?'

This is the site where the community garden is being established but mainly due to timescale I'm no longer working on it...  in the next week, the hope is to establish a link with a new group that's already established. More about that when I know what's happening...

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