I’ve been clearing out my paper collection.
It’s time consuming because there must have been a good reason for keeping the stuff in the first place, so I don’t chuck anything without checking it out.
The collection includes material I’ve acquired at workshops, seminars, forums, discussion groups, etc. Reading the stuff from a few years back is depressing because we haven’t gotten far dealing with some issues, e.g. addictions, a sustainable economy.
I don’t know how many thousands of dollars it took to produce these pieces of paper. Having been on the production end of a few events, I know how much time, energy and money goes into putting them on.
Attendees usually come away all fired up and hot to trot, but too often nothing comes of it. Sometimes there isn’t money available to do anything. Sometimes a new government gets elected and has different priorities. Whatever.
A few years later, someone new recognizes the problem and decides something must be done and away we go again.
Meetings are held, studies commissioned, consultants hired, etc.
I would like to suggest that when an issue arises, the group or the government agency involved should do a bit of research to see what has been done already, and go from there.
Just because a report is gathering dust on a shelf somewhere doesn’t mean the information it contains isn’t valuable. Why keep re-inventing the wheel?
Kind of on the same issue, non-profit groups often work independently and sometimes they could be more effective if they worked together. On June 9, at 5:15 p.m. at TRU, there will be a meeting for non-profit groups to get together on a community events calendar.
The idea is that if each group knows in advance what others have planned, especially on “special” days, we can support each together rather than inadvertently compete, which sometimes happens now.
Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is a former Tribune editor, retired teacher, historian, and book author.