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Belfast BT6 0DA,
Northern Ireland.
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This is an archive of material
mainly from 1992 until December 2020.
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Billy King


Nonviolence News


Annual report 1999

This is an annual report to members, friends and contacts as to what has been happening with INNATE over the last year. As you probably know, INNATE is a loose network and, as with every network, there is the problem of how to build up creative interaction. The main way this is done for INNATE is by the production of Nonviolent News on a monthly basis; yes, this is pretty basic and non-exciting but people do not know what other people are doing much of the time. It is up to you, the reader of Nonviolent News, to build on that information and those contacts. Thanks to 'a little help from a friend', Nonviolent News is now on the web. This website is also very handy for placing additional documentation (reports, training materials, etc) which are not worth mailing out to all members and recipients. Please note though that the co-ordinator is not (yet!) directly e-mailable though hopes to be so during '99.

INNATE does organise occasional seminars and meetings. It organised one small training event at the start of last summer - Learning to ride a nonviolent cycle - and while this was worthwhile the small numbers attending emphasised the rule of thumb that it's much easier to do a training for an existing group than get a new group together for such an event.

That said, there certainly is a role for INNATE to try to pull relevant people and threads together. One such event comes up on 6th March 1999, a Belfast seminar looking at peace, nonviolence and civil society groups over the period of the Troubles, their contribution, and what the future should hold for them.

Another area where INNATE will be trying to pull threads together concerns the UN declared Decade for a Culture of Peace and Nonviolence for the Children of the World, 2001 - 2010. This is a golden opportunity to try to build things up over the period of a decade. INNATE hopes to organise (or persuade others to organise!) networking consultations in several different venues regarding this, perhaps around the early summer and autumn period.

INNATE is an entirely voluntary body, there is nothing involuntary about it, no, I mean we have no paid staff. Good and bad. Bad for me as a volunteer co-ordinator when too many things land on my lap. But it is also sometimes good because what is to be done has to be chosen carefully, there isn't time and energy to waste. As co-ordinator it is also difficult to disentangle that role from my role as a more general nonviolence/group dynamics trainer and facilitator - but things in life as always a bit confused! That said it has been good this last year to undertake training and facilitation in Wales (for the Welsh-speaking FOR there), Croatia (at the WRI Triennial) and Chile (for World Scout Jamboree and for SERPAJ-Chile, on behalf of IFOR). It has been a pleasure and a great networking opportunity on a wider scale.

INNATE has considerable resources (mainly written) on many different aspects and facets of nonviolence and organising. Please ask if there's something you're after. And if you don't receive an answer straight away, please ask again! As indicated above, it is difficult impossible as a voluntary co-ordinator to attend to everything but persistence yields results. In the longer term there remain questions about how INNATE is serviced but I won't start on that again.

For those accessible to Belfast, I would urge participation in networking meetings (no, tasks will not be thrust upon you when you walk through the door) as a way to broaden INNATE's base and get INNATE doing something of what you want. Thanks to those who have been involved. Ideas and suggestions are always welcome, wherever you are. And, if you've read this far, thanks for listening!

Rob Fairmichael,
Coordinator, INNATE,
February 1999


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