Letter to Champions from a Champion

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Dear Champs ,

I have not yet written on this blog before because I could not get on to it before now.

We are part of a Community of Champions, we are breaking down social isolation in ourselves and in others. I think that we are a reflector of what is around us.

What does it mean to be part of a community ?

In my opinion , after a lot of thought, over the years I have been an active Champion it is that we need unity and cohesion at a time when it can often feel that things are falling apart around us in our diffrent Communities & Neighbourhoods.

We need to feel that what we do DOES make a difference in peoples lives. We should be proud of that. We enable positive change in others and embrace positive change within ourselves.

We have to be prepared to be challenged by people in our Communities.Whilst at the same time realising our Commonality of existence, which is deeper than mere agreement.

Parker Palmer [1] , [1977] reminds us that :

” In a true community we will not choose our companions, for our choices are so often limited by self-serving motives.Instead our companions will be given to us by grace.Often they will be people who upset our settled view of Self & the World. In fact we might define the Community as the place where the person you least want to live will always live ! ”

I am a Community Champion because I love doing what I am doing and I know that what I am doing DOES make a positive difference and I am proud of that. As you all are too .

Helping people in a small way and empowering them to move forward in their lives


Community Champion 5.VII.2014


[1]. Quaker Faith & Practice

  1. Welcome Jasmine, your comments are to be applauded, however I would disagree I am in social Isolation, I have a wide circle of friends and family. I for one do hope I am not reflecting what is going on around us. Agree many of the vulnerable we assist are in isolation some by choice. None of us can sit easily with the attacks on the vulnerable by this and previous governments, what we do have to do is to be there for those who are unable to defend or support themselves, and if that means we have to do things others might not like in fear of upsetting the status-quo so be it.

    For me personally its about one’s own principles and values and not a spread-sheet. By doing what we are doing we do make a huge difference to peoples lives for a short period of time. In that short period you are the rock, the crutch, the hand to hold, the ear to listen, and the heart to understand. But once you leave that individual, many fall back into old habits because they have been rejected or abandoned again! I agree with Parker Palmer philosophy I can testify to that.

    Author Colin Rochester in his book: Rediscovering Voluntary Action (The Beat of a Different Drum) he states The dominant paradigm in volunteering is described as a gift of time that is analogous to a gift of money- a philanthropic activity to help someone else less fortunate than oneself. For me personally time is precious its something we give and can never get back. You don’t get time of in lieu, or paid extra, or even a day off!

    However if we look at the Corporate voluntary sector paradigm which is mainly shapes it’s volunteering in form of constraints rules and regulations from the top. A cash cow for organisations which will take advantage of Volunteers.
    I think I heard last year the Champions saved the council £1.4 million pounds. but no-one said were? and at what cost?

    I would say using the word empowerment is a bit strong, its become another word! We need to view “empowerment” as nothing more than the most recently popular buzz word to be thrown in to make sure old programs get new funding.

    Also there is no clearly defined definition of empowerment, so I think what we should say as champions, we try to provide the tools to individuals to take control of their own lives and destiny..

    Conclusion: I think your article is great, I think we do need more input from other champions on sub-it, so we can have debates, opinions, etc. At the same allowing individuals to say what they feel without constrictions, criticism, and to be respected by others who may have differing views. What we must not do is become a mouthpiece for RMBC .

    Once again thanks for your input and hope there will be many more similar conversation in the future.

    Endeavouring upang panatilihin ang pagkakaisa ng Espiritu sa buklod ng kapayapaan at pag-ibig sa lahat ng Champions


  2. Andrew why is Jasmine not posting under her own sub-it name? Why as she not been able to access sub-it freely?

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