Zahra Lightway & Laurence Boomert: Coaching People in Social Innovation and Transforming Our World

Interviewed by

Tim Lynch

Zahra Lightway & Laurence Boomert: Coaching People in Social Innovation and Transforming Our World

Could you and your community use a double shot of extreme hope served with absolute pragmatism?

The new paradigm that we are designing, languaging and shaping is one of collaboration – working in greater unison with group dynamics, bringing community initiatives into being by drawing on innovation, inspiration and goodwill.

We have been expectant of what is to come next in the unfoldment of a new way of life – a new way of being – one that is a total upgrade from the top down pyramid model that has been - patriarchal, extractive and exploitive that has ended up denaturing and dehumanising our world. This model is now falling away.

Unique Geographical Area

Laurence & Zahra are domiciled in the Northern South Island in the area covering Nelson, Motueka, Takaka & Golden Bay.

This whole area is a wellspring of change agents devoted to pioneering ways that people can live, be, do, work and thrive in communities and other ways of life.

From the renown Riverside community the very well known conscientious objector movement of the 2nd World War – now going for over 70 years - who were prepared to stand up for their principles and go to prison - To the Tui and Rainbow communities both been existing for around 30 years and a number of others spread around the area too.

There are many different initiatives happening in many different areas.

In education in Golden Bay there is more self-directed learning and other initiatives asking children what they wish to engage in, what they want their schools to look like now and in the future – plus many school Principle’s are engaged in looking at a new vision of education that is very much aligned with the NZ Government’s 2025 educational vision of more community input that incorporates holistic systems.

Plus ‘I Design’ studio – teaching children from grass roots how to use electronics - designing – coding - creating IP - yet have a preference to ‘open source systems’ for free – and ‘make a space’ initiated by a retired engineer to create interest within the localised rural community. Which typifies the releasing of the potential of new technologies of decentralising and re-localising non colonising …

This includes production manufacturing and invention based on how do people re-think, redesign, remake reinvent the world - and you are not going to put a cap on it.

Local Currencies

In Takaka, the Hands system of Greendollars/timebank- is coming up to its 30th anniversary – with 10% of the regional population as members.

“How about a non-dollar system”. It’s a LETS system a local currency system, paper vouchers and an electronic platforms.

In NZ - Living Economies.

That hundreds of lets system globally use Community Exchange System out of South Africa.

Localising Food Project’ - From the Tui community creating documentaries and educating people to show the issues as why it is important to return to locally produced foods; The loss of seed varieties especially seed that has specifically adapted to each bio region so that they can grow and are resilient to bugs etc so no use of pesticide etc – plus teaching about free food forests – throughout NZ.

So what is happening in the top of the South Island is a reflection of wider movement somewhat as an incubator of new ideas as well as community engagement with these inventions and ideals. Groups of people holding very high ideals and yet being pragmatic in their practice of them.

Practical Community Building

Laurence and Zahra want to know how to make practical these revolutionary, visionary - ideals and integrate them into people’s lives. Do a web search and youtube search on localising food projects – there is a whole archive for film footage of best practices – to save heritage seeds, to create food forests and food gardens in schools.- Especially Robin McCurdy one of NZ’s much loved permaculture pioneers.

Raw milk dispensing by farmers at the farm gate - called Village Milk via a chilled dispenser as well as a glass bottle dispenser that you can buy – it’s practically organic milk – it just has no certification – but its organic by practice – this is being franchised out across the country though government regulators endeavour to get in the way due to health concerns – however it is a revolution in the making. Especially, assisting with a healthy gut etc. and also the products of eating from fresh milk.

This is big and it will only grow when people realise that the milk they are drinking may be from - powder. Those white plastic supermarket bottles with a dark interior – which do not state anywhere on the plastic bottle that the milk has been pasteurised or homogenised – check it out - very strange.

Meanwhile NZ continues to slumber ☺

Joel Salatin in the US is mentioned as a keen raw milk farmer and the challenges he has to be able to sell from the farm gate.

Joel Salatin's "I drink raw milk (sold illegally on the underground market)".

Pupu Springs a Natural Event

A Taonga among Maori with some of the purest water on our planet – deeply sacred place there are many springs over this whole Golden Bay, Takaka, Motueka Nelson area and Laurence poetically describes this in that the people of this whole region who are drinkers of such blessed water are themselves ‘wellsprings’ of goodwill, creativity and community as like the Pupu springs - expressing pure powerful goodness that gushing to the surface spreads its transparent latency among the populace that is springing forth this possibility of conscious change and transformation.

What is going right for us in the world today

Zahra & Laurence talk about the good things going right for us in the world today … and this is what the community game is all inclusive of. They both created and designed it as inherently we have the solutions within us as well as the many solutions already been worked on and worked out right around our planet –

(Best Listen to this to fully realise the potential of what this game presents).

And a ‘Maker World for Schools’ – Instead of saying in 40 year time the oceans will have no fish and then move on to page 47 and focus on some other subject – what is being said now – is ‘what can we do about it?’ and have a discussion and do projects around finding innovative ways to look what can be done to bring about the much needed change to save our fishing grounds? And make this an important, empowering learning. Because all the maths, the language the sciences can still be learned by applying them to the subject being studied and looked at – the subject being totally inclusive of other learning modalities.

Children learn better on experiential project based learning - especially projects that matter to them – that inspire them – engages them fully so they learn by embedding topical and deeply focused information that always works towards the best possible outcome.

If the schools focus on right lively hoods – why not focus on enterprise education – today and the social implications of working together?

If the science is correct – that the trajectory is so dire then why waste children’s education on intellectual subject matter totally unrelated to survival – when the prognosis of our common future is so heavily weighted against life as we know it today.

Revolutionize Education!

This is where Zahra and Laurence want to see schools transformed – and with Mainstream education realising that 1/3 or teaching jobs will be redundant in 10 years time due to automation and robotics – this is a perfect time for education and learning curriculums to totally up their game - be reinvented and become holistic community wide – lifelong learning and equip children with the many 21st century learning methods and subject matter to focus on their basic growth as a human being living on a planet. This translates to an empowered inner resourced and savvy younger generation equipped to face the future head on.

Which maker world for schools inspires them into the new collaborative culture.

Self Funding Community Projects

The next step is how do you self fund yourself. – Listen to the interview.

Other Subjects Covered

Technology breaking out. - disruptive technologies

Self driving trucks – soon they will be everywhere as they have only a simple A to B journey – many drivers will be out of a job. Millions of jobs worldwide will see jobs cease to exist.

All rote or repetitive jobs within a decade will be going within a decade – by robots or a computer program – UBER - you know about the taxi revolution – they state that in 4 years self driven cars will be here and by 2025 fast decking numbers of petrol cars will be on the road.

Community to come together when so many jobs start disappearing.

Could there be a student revolution start soon that is totally global and could kids shun school until the adult population can deliver a plan for a viable, sustainable future solution orientation that factors the requirements for all?

Decentralisation to Empower People

Are Governments obsolete – but just have not woken up to it?

Scary as the situation is – the only option is to reinvent how we can live – together etc transformation now is our only option

Thus Zahra & Laurence see the urgent need for a training program with all the new project management tools that are now available – because we NOW have the tools to go forward to shape the new paradigm.

And they both state that they have most of the keys so that you can virtually take them out of a box and put them to work.

We are on the cusp of creativity that we have never seen before – 3 d printing of objects, machines, houses, gadgets etc - clothes will be dialled up or downloaded from a computer to a sewing machine device and the technology is already here.

They see humanity on a cellular level as a neighbourhood and they want to see our planet healed and the neighbourhood at the same time.

It’s an evolution revolution and it’s happening around our planet and Laurence & Zahra are doing their part.

Bubbles of creativity and community are popping up everywhere around our planet - they are becoming more and more = spreading out until their sides touch and then the tipping point will be reached and they will all merge into the new paradigm.

Food is an important piece of the jigsaw – have control of what we are putting into our body temple. Then we have autonomy – we have choice, health and better strategies and outcomes.

Other Interview Topics

Ethics and values will become an important issue.

What if Greenpeace had incorporated Greenpeace Inc and set up a solution oriented arm – to provide for everyone everyone. Because they would have tens of millions of potential investors, stakeholders buyers suppliers employees – the could have been huge by now and gaining more adherents because their products and services were second to none! And ecological sustainability would be embedded throughout the network/organisation.

Corporations are in a death spiral and they are not loved by people and big doesn’t function anymore.

Collaborative is the new model

Even businesses are collaborating with their own competitors today. Co-opetition. e.g. restaurant row.

Force fed Neo liberal nonsense of dog eat dog has to come to an end - dogs don’t eat each other either.

Our world is based on diversity and symbiosis

Noo map http://noomap.info/co-creation/ - Barbara Marks Hubbard Co creation and how we are working together to create and shape our future.

Open Source Society in Wellington NZ.

We have the capacity to work together and collaborate on large scale issues at a species level.

One of the more profound and grounded futurists being:

Jeremy Rifkin - The 3rd Industrial Revolution.

The Venus Project

The Venus Project New Zealand - facebook page.

The Venus Project Beyond Politics Poverty and War

An extremely informative and inspirational interview - going onto the front foot and pushing the envelope well out before them - this is one interview to download and listen.

Zahra Lightway and Laurence Boomert.

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Tim Lynch

Tim Lynch

Tim Lynch, is a New Zealander, who is fortunate in that he has whakapapa, or a bloodline that connects him to the Aotearoan Maori. He has been involved as an activist for over 40 years - within the ecological, educational, holistic, metaphysical, spiritual & nuclear free movements. He sees the urgency of the full spectrum challenges that are coming to meet us, and is putting his whole life into being an advocate for todays and tomorrows children. 'To Mobilise Consciousness.'

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