Community organizing

The Grenfell tragedy shows us what happens when we refuse to listen to people, rendering them powerless. We know the residents
Do you remember the Big Society, the ambition where the state would be rolled back and every effort would be made to engage people, neighbourhoods and organisations in a way that would build social capital? The means of doing this would be co-production. But where has this intention gone?
The Labour Party is a party without love and without sin. It can thereby do no right and no wrong in its own eyes. And so in the eyes of everyone else it is a party without life and soul. And a party without life and soul is not one you want to be at.
The real impact of a Budget isn't clear until a little later, when the dust begins to settle. Announcements that seem very clever in the Commons chamber can lose their lustre under more extended scrutiny.
The people working hardest for charity and justice at home tend to think those same values should shape our treatment of all the world's citizens. This Pastoral Letter invites us to recognise in each of our fellow humans the image of God. It is credible because the Church is not just saying these things. In England's poorest communities, it is living them out.
It didn't used to be like this. 50 years ago, in most parts of the country, you not only knew your neighbours but there was a reasonable chance that they were pretty much like you. You were involved in common local activities and institutions. Religiously, you probably behaved, believed and belonged in the same way as everyone else.
In recent years there has been a boom in community led initiatives from creating new woodlands to running an orchard. These places, which are often quite small, can bring people together to share the wonder of being immersed in nature and seeing how the seasons change.
That privatisation and monetizing everything is not the answer and that we need to figure out other ways to create value together is part of the solutions that seventy-two projects from around the world present in an anthology edited by David Bollier and Silke Helfrich.
Just over seven years ago, on 6 July 2005, I was in Trafalgar Square jumping around hugging my friends, colleagues and family as Jacques Rogge said one little world that sent us all into a state of joyous delirium.This week I carry the Olympic Flame in my home city.
Remember, the social worth of a University is not to be measured in the projects it does, or the numbers of students it has, or the wealth it's students create. The social worth of a University is in the decisions it's graduates throughout their career.
Today, there is a paucity of our more tangible community galvanisers, such as gathering at church or community events, which could ameliorate the risk of social isolation. Perhaps, for the digital natives, social isolation need not be an issue as these physical gatherings are digitally dissolved by global online communities.
As the Occupy Wall Street movement begins to focus its concerns and demands into concrete issues, it may be that it can learn something from the experience of those facing similar issues in London.