Working towards positive change

This is the first time i've been on this website, so I'm not entirely sure how everything works. But I'm just going for it.

Lao Tsu of China said in 700 BC "Go to the people, live with them, learn from them, love them. Start with what they know, build with what they have. With the best leaders, when the work is done, the task is accomplished, the people will say: 'we have done this ourselves'"

It's words of inspiration, said so many years ago, but really addressing a key issue of humanity - one that needs to be actively understand by anyone working with others. Even locally, with the communities we are involved in we need to "start with what they know, build with what they have" in order to allow individuals the ability to form and shape their own opinion of the world by educating them and making them more aware. The world does not need a bunch of poeple who think the exact same way, we need people who look inside themselves with their awareness and realize what they can offer the world whether that be internationally or locally. It's the idea of "thinking globally, acting locally" - an idea that we should all take to heart.

I enjoy reading what all of you have to say - looking forward to continuing to become more aware through all of your information.

Welcome Heather!

Hello Heather kidd,

Welcome at wechange!
I looked at your profile and I like what you say about yourself and your interests. You certainly found the right place.
Nice quote from Lao Tsu. Also, from your comment, you seem to understand very well what wechange intends to be: a community of people who may not agree on everything, but have one thing in common, namely we all want to contribute something, to change something within our heart and within our communities in order to shape what we hope will be a better tomorrow.

Allow me to show you around a bit, and suggest your a few ways you can use this site to share with us your interests and promote the issues your care about.

First of all, this site is fairly young. There are very few active users, as yet, so don't be disappointed if I am the only one to greet you :)
But given time, the community will certainly grow.

Take time to set your personal account. Go to my account (left) > click on the edit tab, and browse through the different sub-tabs, filling information as you feel is appropriate. This information will help different users with similar interests to connect with each other. For example, even though we may have different approaches to spirituality, it is the topic that unites the greatest number of members:

The site's activity is mostly centered around a few different "groups" (think "yahoogroups", if you know) each having a very different topic. You can browse through the few existing ones, and if you feel interested in any of the groups' topic, you can 'subscribe' to that group (when viewing a group, see the 'subscribe' link on the left). Subscribing to a group will allow you to tag any of your blog or forum post for that group (i.e. your post will be listed in that group's homepage). Also, you will have the choice to have a mail delivered to you (or not) each time a new item is posted in that group.

Browse through all the links at the very top: they are convenient entry points to important parts of the site.

When you create a forum post or a blog entry, take care filling the three fields (Topics, people, Geographic relevance) using a list of key words: those will help other people to find your post when browsing through the tags. For example, I have recently taken the time to cover Gore's documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" and users can now find a list of all related entries relevant to it. So, if you often blog on the same topic and tag each blog entry appropriately, the topic/place/people you talk about will be prominently displayed on the tag list (see top links).
For example, you can edit this very blog entry, and add "Lao Tsu" in the "People" field. Later, if other people make mention of him, the posts will be listed together when clicking on the tag "Lao Tsu".

This is a direct link to your blog:
You can invite your friends to have a look at it.

You can also post into one of the few forums:
For example, you can post in the Forum: Information! a link to a relevant web site together with a short commentary.
If you have questions or a suggestion about the site wechange and the community, post in the Forum: WeChange Community!

If you feel like, you can decide to create your own group. The few that exist are definitely not a set list, but give an idea of the broad range of topics that can be covered here. If you feel you have a lot to share (your thoughts as well as links to relevant more specialized web sites) about Youth, Sports and Education, or Development in Africa (examples inspired by your profile), then you may decide to organize a group on that particular topic (just like Forbes Leslie has contributed most of the material in Creating Communitas). If so, just post in the Forum: WeChange Community! and briefly explain what topic you would like to cover in the new group, how you would like to call the new group, etc. and I'll set up the group for you.

Another thing: the most fun aspect of this site is the ability to interact and exchange ideas with other members. Feel free to post comments to other people's posts, etc.
Invite friends, colleagues and other like-minded people to join, too.

I've already covered many things but not everything. If anything is unclear or your have questions, suggestions for this web site, etc, then post in the Forum: WeChange Community!