Any group that wants to right the social injustices of this world, who wants to attempt to counter balance the structural inequality that excludes so many from participation in their community and society, has to approach the concept of empowerment. What does it mean to be empowered? What are the forms of power? It is clear that where there is the power to make a decision that effects the world, that power is being distributed unequally according to many factors of identity and class and a thousand other things. Where that is happening, there is space for empowerment.
Look around you. Everything you see was the result of someone’s decision making. Someone chose to make the world around you look like it does. That person had some power, the power to make that decision and change and create the world around them. That is a very significant type of power to have. Our latest entry to the 170, Lula Kenworth, noticed this and has been working to share that power with those who may never have had the chance to wield it. He has been working to help kids from deprived backgrounds to gain access to architectural education. Working with Liverpool based Architects he has opened up education about Architecture and access to the idea of becoming and architect to groups who would never have had such a thing.
Lula didn’t want her face out here on the internet!
Well congratulations Lula, welcome to the 170!
The applicants have come thick and fast and we’ve had to sift through literally tens of them over the past week or so. It really has been one hell of an uphill struggle I can tell you that for free! But as a great man once said: ‘There is no great triumph without great struggle’. This is so true: how can one triumph if one has not struggled? It simply cannot be! One needs something to struggle to over come, one needs to triumph over some adversary, one needs to triumph over some challenge, otherwise one has no triumph and no struggle and to some that means no life. It is a horrific pain, to have no life. A man no one should have to suffer. A yet we suffer, such strife do we suffer. But without it, how could we ever triumph?
This week, we introduce Fanny Plexworth of Big Arm, Montana, USA into the 170. This is a young woman who knows a thing or too about struggle. Fanny has lived a life which has been surrounded by swimming and swimming pools. Born into to poverty, she was a champion swimmer in school and eventually on a national level, she was paid to make big money endorsements of Adidas swimming trunks and Luxe one piece pools and went on to do very well for herself. She then set up the Fanny Plexworth Sports Academy for under privaledged youths looking to get to a better place. Let’s see what she has to say…
Big Arm, Montana
“When I was young we didn’t have lots of stuff, kids up on the ridge always used to get all these new things and i wouldn’t have none. So I’d just go down the creek and swim and swim all day and all night. I never thought all that swimming would take me anywhere, but it took me to 29 national titles and $48,000,000 dollars. For a while, I just kept my money in a box and some at pa’s house. But when I went from $47,000,000 to $48,000,000 I thought ‘Hey Fanny, ya’ll should help another with your god given blessings. So I opened the Academy. Thanks for letting me in your club!”
We can’t wait to start working with Fanny and unite here with the rest of the now fast growing 170. Things are picking up!
So here we go, after a long period of research and sifting through literally some applications and suggestions, we have selected our first member of the 170. Danny Daniels is a man from a place. That man is Danny Daniels and that place is Warrington, England, The UK, Europe. Danny Daniels has got unemployed children back to work building conservatories in Warrington (check the conservatories out). These children had been out of work for literally years and Danny Daniels is working hard to get them labouring once again!
Warrington’s Town Hall. Not all residents of Warrington have such grand living quarters though…
Here’s what Danny had to say:
“I’m so proud to be the first member of the 170. It’s an honour that I feel completely in honour of and am ready to fight to prove that I deserve. Growing up in Warrington I saw so many kids who just had nothing: no schooling, no structure, no hope, no job. I decided to change that. Through my ‘Conservative Conservatories’ program, with a little help from government funding, we’ve managed to get many children into (almost) full minimum wage paying jobs, reducing the need for their parents to receive child support money from the already over stretched state.’
Truly an inspirational person, you can see why we’ve got him into the 170!
Almost half of the people on this planet, that’s over three billion people, live below the poverty line on less than $2.50 a day. At least 80% of humanity live on less than $10 a day. The richest 20 people in American have more economic and material wealth than the bottom half of American society- that’s 150 million people. People are impoverished, desperate, bored, alienated, stressed, lonely, angry, sad and struggling. Some people are determined. Some people are determined to find solutions, to find a way forward, and to fight for that way.
These are the people that we want. We want 170 of you! In fact, we don’t ‘want’ this 170, we need this 170. The world needs this 170. The world needs leaders and we have decided to try and find 170 of them. To change the world is not easy, it requires great people pushing great people to do great things. To do these things against the odds, to do these things against powerful vested interests, to do these things that people say can’t be done and mean shouldn’t be done because they disrupt, they attack, they threaten those who profit of injustice and pain. Are you someone who can do that? Can you be one of the 170?