IN CONVERSATION :
Rachel and Nilam, We Make Change (In Person. The South Bank, London)
The way things worked out, I did not manage either to arrange to speak to anyone or encounter many people in the capital who were able and willing to talk when it suited me to do so. I did cross paths with the volunteers of We Make Change, a new institution; Rachel and Nilam peeled off the group momentarily to let me know what they were about.
JO: So, I just noticed you. You aren’t the first political thing I’ve noticed in London … there was a big thing yesterday of all the main football teams sent down … did you see … fans … Football Lads Alliance, or something?
JO: Very strange thing. I’d never seen it before … but clearly you are up to something … It says “We make change” on your flags and your T-shirts. What’s that about?
R: So, We Make Change is like a social change …
JO: oops. Sorry … introductions … Jon.
R: Hello Jon, I’m Rachel and …
N: Nilam. Nilam.
JO: Nilam. Rachel and Nilam.
R: Nice to meet you.
JO: you too.
R: So We Make Change is a social change movement. Essentially, we’re developing a social media platform. We want to connect individuals with charities and causes that they care about. And we’re just marching around London this afternoon to raise awareness about how anybody, any individual doing whatever they can, can make change. The littlest action can make such a big difference. So, we’re just marching around London this afternoon spreading positive vibes around the city of London to help people see that they can be the change they want to see.
N: … it’s providing people with a voice so that they can actually speak on the platform as well …
JO: so that’s a slightly different … you’re not … I’m trying to. … I guess I am trying to pigeon hole you … you’re not trying to actually put out a message other than change is possible and it comes about through human action … but what the messages are is down to what people choose to do with that ….
R: so, it’s not so much a protest but more like a positive march for positive reasons … rather than coming against something or being for something instead ….
JO: It’s not connected to change.org, the petition machine.
JO: So, how big is it? Is it a brand new institution? I haven’t heard of it before and I’m fairly active in this sort of thing.
N: It started in February. And now we’ve got 40 volunteers.
R: 4 – 0
JO: 4 – 0. Is it London based or part of London?
R: We’ve got volunteers all over the world …
N: Like Romania and New York.
JO: Where did that come from then? Who started that?
R: The CEO James Sancto and Felix whose last name I can’t …
N: Cosmo … From Romania.
JO: It’s a good name.
R: So they both had the same idea for this platform and they both tried to register the same webspace, online … and found out that each other had tried to do the same thing
JO: oh really
R: … so they connected and developed it together so like right from the beginning, it has had like a massive international kind of feeling behind it …
JO: cool. Yes, it fits very nicely actually with the message of the rest of my trip. So my project is called DecencyandSurvival.com. And I’m trying to reach, as a citizen, a conclusion of my own on a number of big questions that we’re all facing … one of which is how can we make changes and who is going to do it? So you fit rather nicely.
R: well, that fits in perfectly. That’s amazing.
JO: So, one of the outputs will be an illustrated guide to the state of the world – from a British perspective, illustrated according to what’s going on here … and I’m going to chuck in all the links and things that I think are most relevant including those, of course, that I’ve bumped into on my travels. The road trip I am doing is 36 days … this is Day 33. You’ll be in the London collection of links and things. I’ll duck out now ’cause I think I am holding you all up … and I don’t want to get in the way of change.