With each day bringing new evidence of the crisis, it’s hard not to feel a sense of helplessness.
As awareness and understanding of the climate crisis have grown, we are continually bombarded with advice on cutting our own personal carbon footprint. You may have reconsidered your diet and the way you travel and shop, maybe you’ve made your home more energy-efficient or installed solar panels. While reducing our own impact is important and can have positive ripple effects, the focus on the individual has left many of us feeling insignificant and powerless to create the bigger changes needed to create a positive future. Talking about the climate crisis and individual actions with those around us can feel uncomfortable and create feelings of shame and division. So much has been focused on our power as consumers, that we have forgotten about our power as citizens and as communities. Our mission is to help individuals to rediscover that power and to use it to bring about positive change in their communities.
At our core is the belief that the intertwined issues of climate and social breakdown offer an enormous opportunity for a revolution in the way that we live our lives and the role of humans as part of nature. To make this change happen, we need people to demand it and, where possible, to take matters into their own hands. However, in societies where we are encouraged to act and think like individual consumers, this is a huge task. That’s why we are focusing on the idea of small and well-defined, closed micro-communities. We believe that this is essential to help us build the muscle of acting as citizens and as community members. By strengthening these communities, we are helping individuals to feel less isolated and to feel more empathy - critical tools for building a better future. By tapping into the power of our communities, we aim to empower individuals to take a more active role in our democracy and in shaping the world in which we live. As we grow and develop, we plan to nurture a community of communities and, in time, see the huge potential in this for creating more widespread and ambitious change.
Define Your Micro-Community
You tell us about your micro-community. We believe that trust and familiarity are key to building community, that’s why we ask you to keep your community small and well-defined. For example, it could be the street or building where you live, families at your child’s school or nursery, or employees at your workplace.
Set Up a Project
We seek out amazing and pioneering small-scale community initiatives and we help you to replicate them and adapt them for your own micro-community. We focus on simple projects which are easy to launch and to run. This could be a small one-off project such as a play street or a parklet, or a longer-term one such as a neighbourhood car sharing scheme or library of things. We recognise that the issues of climate justice and social justice can feel divisive and make for awkward conversation topics. At the heart of what we do, we believe that solving these problems is hugely exciting and has the potential to create a better and fairer society for all. That’s why we focus on projects that embody this optimism. While they are all encouraging behaviours and ways of being which are aligned with positive change, they all have other benefits - whether that’s saving time, money or space, or contributing to our collective and individual wellbeing.
Become a Part of Something Bigger
We recognise that it takes courage to start something, no matter how small. That's why you'll go through the process in a small group together with like-minded individuals. As we develop, you'll also be a part of a wider eco-system of other micro-community champions in order to share ideas and knowledge and become part of a movement creating and demanding a radically better future for our planet and all its inhabitants.
Since becoming aware of the scale of the unfolding climate crisis almost 10 years ago, Cecily has been on a journey of learning and of finding her role in building a better future. Her experiences in building and working in sustainable business and running events around sustainability have led her to understand the vital role communities must play and to founding InCommon.