Hi Everyone :)
It feels like a lifetime since I communicated with you all! I am happy to say that exams went well and I have even had a week off to rest and recuperate from a full on three months :)
Firstly, I would like to congratulate all those who made the Winter Solstice Gathering happen. I really appreciated others taking the lead this year and believe the event reflected everything special about what KSM and the Karamea community are... thank you.
Resonance Karamea facebook event page is up: https://www.facebook.com/events/1589940651270971/
Please feel free to share it around and invite people!
The primary reason for writing this email is to clearly communicate the process I wish to guide for the production of the 'Resonance Karamea' festival to become 'owned' by the Karamea community as a whole... I was hoping I would have time to recover from exams and get the necessary background work done before presenting this to the community however a recent discussion on the Karamea Community Website as meant this discussion needs to begin now - Zoning for Resonance 2016
A summer festival in Karamea has been developing, evolving and growing for four years now and has been a direct result of my personal drive and the amazing effort of people from within our community and beyond. The last 12 months have seen a total restructuring of the event with the event now totally run by the Karamea Community, the creation of the Resonance Karamea Educational Trust and the crystallisation of a network of connections that has now expanded throughout the South Island and into the North.
This is the foundation upon which what we do going forward stands.
So why do I want to begun this process? Aside from the fact my property is on the market and as such my living arrangements (and life in general) are open to change, for an 'organisation' to become sustainable it needs to manifest itself as separate from the person(s) who created it... in essence become a set of values, processes and resources that remains stable even when those who 'breath life into it' change. Much of this work has already been done:
...and finally I have a very clear understanding of the history, cultural context and processes involved in making the event happen which now needs to be manifested outside of my head :)
So what is this process? In its simplest form this process is a mind map and two documents which I will utilise to work along side those who which to take on key roles to understand, develop and take action. The mind map shows how all aspects of the event relate to all other aspects of the event so an individual can conceptualise how their actions 'connects' with other aspects of the festival as a whole making communication and action more effective. The two documents are clear frameworks for 1. exploring, developing and planning ideas associated with an aspect of the event and 2. planning communication with the group as a whole. The second document will help ensure that all communication between those involved in the event has a consistent format to ensure ease of reading.
It is unrealistic to expect this process to occur in just one year, also out of respect for all those who have made the event what it is I want this process to result in the growth of the event (rather than a process of reinventing the wheel...). As such I see this year as:
This final point involves a process within itself, namely reconnecting with all those involved in last years event to ask for feedback on their experiences... for myself though, I want to see:
So where to from here? I ask that I have time to complete the development of the mind maps and documents. Out of that process will come a clear description of the different areas reflecting what I see worked and what needed adjustment from my experience in organising last years event. These descriptions will then form the foundation upon which roles can be renegotiated and developed.
Communication: Brendan has made the suggestion we hold discussions on the organisation of Resonance Karamea on the Community website. While in principle I think this is a great idea I will continue to develop a KSM Newsletter (what you are reading now!) while we explore and potentially transition over to a more open means of communication. As such I will provide links and references in the newsletter to discussions on the community website forum ensuring no one misses out on the 'conversation'...
Photographs and stories from this years events: We are about to begin the process of updating the festival website and fb event page! Brendan has expressed his interest in developing the Resonance Karamea logo further and I have met up with Stu Reid to discuss how the update will unfold. If you have any photos and/or stories from this years event please feel free to send them through to me! I will accumulate all the material and create a package for those interested in utilising the material in promoting the event.
Please can you provide me with high definition images... even if that means arranging to catch up in person to transfer files :)
Supporting Maori Culture in our community: I just want to put this out there.
I am excited to see our children gaining more exposure to Maori culture at the school, while I am positive Sue is doing a wonderful job I am concerned that due to her not being 'of the culture' some of the more spiritual/meaningful/lived aspects of the culture are missing from their education...
Last week I had the honour of being a part of an exciting project being driven by the local Maori community. While I have something to offer the project itself, the process is enabling me to network and develop a working relationship with potential partners for an increased Maori presence both at the festival in within the community in general. In particular there is a local (Westport) women who is amazing when performing rituals around prayer and song who when I approached her is interested in supporting our community in developing a deeper understanding of the Maori culture.
Of course this will cost as her costs will need to covered and her abilities acknowledged - the next step is to approach Buller REAP for possible funding but I am wondering if we could utilise some of the Resonance Karamea Trust funds to contribute towards this happening? What are your thoughts?
Apologies for the length of this email... there was a lot to explain that I feel is essential for the continued success of the summer festival. I look forward to your feedback.