Since reading Minute 36 from Yearly meeting, Warrington has felt empowered to start making changes in our lives and meeting.
As part of this we’ve started a Step Down campaign within our meeting. Our Step Down philosophy is inspired by two Chinese proverbs:
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
It is better to light one candle than curse the darkness.
The idea is that rather than be overwhelmed by the journey towards a low-carbon lifestyle, instead we take that journey one step at a time. If every time we face a decision, we choose the more eco-friendly option our lives will change. And each time we make a better decision, we find it easier to make the next one.
In practise, we’ve started assessing our meeting house so we can identify points of improvement. Like other meetings we have a Grade II listed Meeting house, so are challenged to find historically sympathetic solutions.
The garden in contrast has offered us several opportunities for creative community projects. Last month we broke ground on a new meeting house vegetable garden – with four separate plots to aid in crop rotation. With advice from the National Wildflower Centre we also began digging some wild flower beds. We hope this will encourage wildlife and support biodiversity.
Finally we’ve held a sustainability workshop with the Living Witness, an all age green day, and we have shared our personal journeys over shared lunches and discussion groups.
We’ve still a long way to go obviously, but we hope that our Step Down philosophy will guide through times of enthusiasm and uplift us if we feel overwhelmed.