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September 15, 2010

Wave of Change breaks over Govan

Whenever an Olympic Games is held, the host country also organises a Cultural Olympiad .  This can take many forms and part of the 2012 programme is something called the Wave of Change. A Scottish Wave of Change is beginning to build momentum with work taking place in Dundee and Govan in Glasgow. The idea is to explore how local people take action to shape their community’s future.  The Govan Wave of Change is well underway – building to a crescendo at Christmas

Liz Gardiner, Chief Exec of Fablevision, explains the unfolding Govan Wave of Change….

I would like to take this opportunity to share some information with you about five forthcoming events designed to support those of us who live and/or work in Govan to “surf” this wave of change.
A group of local organisations (The Pearce Institute, Govan Old Parish Church, Galgael Trust, the Centre for Human Ecology and Fablevision) have formed a steering group whose purpose is to move forward the vision for Govan’s heritage heartland. With a working title of “The Govan Cultural and Heritage Campus”, supported by architects Page and Park and Govan Workspace, the steering group have managed to attract Heritage Lottery Funding to take forward a creative visioning process called “The Future of Our Past”.  With this kind of energy and impetus, the activity in Govan has not gone unnoticed by the outside world and Gerry Hassan, whose Scottish Wave of Change programme for the Cultural Olympiad was looking for an exciting urban story to tell, has joined the team with support for some “Govan Wave of Change”  conversation events.
So, with additional support from the City of Glasgow, the Scottish Government, GSWRA, Awards for All, trust funds and sponsors, we have designed a programme of story telling and creative visioning to support Govan’s Wave of Change – in particular those aspects of the change which cannot be delivered by buldozers and building works – Govan’s changing “story” created by local people from the inside and projected out into the world.
Scheduled to take place between September and December 2010, the first event will take place on Friday, 10th September between 10am and 4.30pm in Orkney Street Business Centre.

Primarily aimed at those of us who work in Govan, the event will be led by Gerry Hassan and a team of facilitators who are asking us to come along, not as representatives of our respective organisations, but rather that we attend as individuals ready to share our own “story” and how our journey through life has led us to be where we are, doing what we are doing in Govan today.
The next event is scheduled for Saturday 23rd October in the Pearce Institute. This will be a WORLD CAFE session of informal enquiry conducted through structured cafe-style table facilitation and it is our aspiration that as many “inhabitants” of Govan as it is possible to fit into the building will attend. Whether we live, work or “hang out” here, we have a stake in the future and have something to contribute as well as to gain from participation.
Next on the programme, scheduled for Wednesday, 10th November, is a national conference with the Scottish Urban Regeneration Forum (SURF) looking at “Creative Approaches in Regeneration”. Govan will have the opportunity to profile what is happening here, benchmark our processes against others from other parts of the country, and learn from elsewhere in the process. This event is one half of a “twinned pair” – the other twin is happening in Inverness during the same week and is focussed on the rural dimension. Together, these events will inform representation to Scottish Government.

That same week (possibly even the following day, Thursday 11th November, t.b.c.) the PI will be buzzing once again – this time to host an Art Auction of work by local artists as well as from some high profile names. Proceeds from this auction will go towards supporting the continuation of this creative visioning process beyond 2010.
And the finale…
The launch of The Govan Oratorio (working title, December date to be confirmed)

A lantern-lit mid winter celebration, created by local people, supported by professional artists and musicians: choral singing with word and music in Govan Old Parish Church, the Oratorio will celebrate Govan’s spiritual past, present and future.
We look forward to welcoming you to attend all of these events.
If you would like to be involved in creating, developing or funding them as well, please contact me and i will signpost you to the relevant people.

In particular, if you have groups who might want to be part of the Govan Oratorio, let us know a.s.a.p.