The entertainment industry grew up around the important idea of protecting an individual’s creative output from unfair exploitation. Our philosophy is that giving away our creativity and energy is also important. Here are some of the projects in which we are involved.
“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.”
George Bernard Shaw
Commonwealth of Ideas
Today we face some big challenges. Inequality, climate change, the effects of globalization, for example. It’s a daunting list, and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. However, as HG Wells said, human history is, in essence, a history of ideas. We are full of them. We have them every day. Our most powerful ideas create visions, solve problems, and shape our societies.
The Commonwealth of Ideas is based on the belief that our ingenuity is our common wealth and the best resource we have for tackling these challenges. In the first instance, COI will be a website that allows you to upload your ideas, large or small, to be shared with the world. Others can interact with your idea, build on it, and take it. You won’t be paid. You might not be credited, but you will be contributing to positive change. We are looking for partners to help us create the Commonwealth of Ideas. We need ideas people, design people and technical people. If this speaks to you, please get in touch with Sarah Williams on firstname.lastname@example.org
Association for the Protection of Women and Children’s Rights
Big Picture Legal supports this small grassroots organization in Cameroon, both with donations and advice. APWCR was set up by George Abang-Tawoh who had witnessed the suffering of his aunt who was forced into an abusive marriage to settle a family debt. Determined to help the most vulnerable in Cameroonian society, George took it upon himself to learn about human rights. In 1999, he set up APWCR specifically to combat such social problems as gender-based violence (especially female circumcision and forced child marriages), child trafficking and child labour abuse. APWCR now also sponsors orphans through the completion of elementary education.
George and his volunteers have already accomplished an incredible amount. For example, they negotiated better working conditions for child labourers, have provided counselling in relation to human rights abuses to over 600 persons and have investigated over 450 complaints.
To sustain its funding, APWCR has started an initiative to farm plantains. The produce is sold to the local market and, if farmed in sufficient quantities, could help it survive as an organisation. The land has been leased from a local community, but the plantation is 7kn away and APWCR has no vehicle. The workers have to carry plantains on their heads to the market. Remember, they are volunteers – they are not paid to do this – they do it because it is so important for their society!
Sunshine Organic Farms
Sarah Williams is part of a collective that has started Sunshine Organic Farm in Elmina, Ghana. It is an exciting project that brings together African and British expertise to create a beautiful farm, based on an ethos of permaculture, organic principles and respect for the local context. The first harvest is expected in 2014, and the long-term vision is that Sunshine will be a hub for organic produce distribution throughout West Africa. The vision is not just about growth and profit for the company, however. We are working with University of Cape Coast to share knowledge and skills in a way that enhances opportunities for farmers throughout the region.
For photos of our project, click on the instagram link: http://instagram.com/sunshine_organic_farms, and if you are interested in finding out more and/or or getting involved, please contact Peter Adarkwah on email@example.com