Can you tell us a little bit about Community Centred Knowledge and your work?
Community Centred Knowledge (CCK) is an open collective, which aims to invest in minds and hearts, attitudes and practice, by exploring and repairing the subconscious prejudices, conventions and habits that destructively divide our worlds.
Our experience to date has evidenced that our interactive workshops have been impactful because we work with bias to support attitude change. We do not sidestep the existence of individual or collective trauma and dissonance that is widespread throughout society, but rather we take it into account in designing, often together with participants, approaches that can help in developing healing modalities.
We support self-exploration and community led research into self-discovery and working towards a solution orientation of the many challenges which beset us on a daily basis, and which often have become institutionalised into ways of socially or culturally expressing ourselves. We recognise that we need to build our capacity to capitalise on the initial impact of this work and to engage more effectively with more hidden parts of the food system to bring about sustainable and equitable change.
The voices, perspectives and knowledge of communities that are affected by lack - and in some ways we all experience lack - are a vital contribution to the larger narratives around food as nourishment.
To ensure our collective well being, these voices must contribute to the formulation of policy and shaping of institutional practice. We offer a pathway for this to happen in ways that also encourage mutual exchange through our encouragement of the listening to a wide variety of perspectives as part of our journey making.
We work towards systemic and lasting social change for the better. We work towards justice for all through reciprocal action and development of the whole being.
Can you explain what lies behind the name Community Centred Knowledge?
Knowledge is often considered to be predominantly in the domain of 'experts' who are not viewed as arising from the community.
We contest this in two ways:
Firstly by asserting that everyone comes from a community: from the lowliest and most marginalised in society, all the way through to the most elite and entitled academic 'expert' and all those that lie between or surround these 'types'.
There are ways in which we all have relationships: extractive or not, nurturing or not, with other members of communities of geography or interest. There is benefit in recognising this as a reality.
Secondly by promoting the idea that we all contribute to the stock of knowledge that exists within communities or across society. Knowledge manifests out of everyday experience that may be reflected upon in everyday ways, such as the route to the bus stop or the best place to buy nails.
All age groups possess and make regular use of the knowledge that suits their lifestyles and survival or thriving. We often do not surface this knowledge, identifying only that which passes through particular institutions. Lets face it, there is a lot that life teaches us which is not in a school curriculum. Lets value this.