Community Activists Network
I was shaken once by feeling really angry. A teenage Israeli soldier tried to humiliate and provoke Palestinian men by forcing them to sit in a drainage ditch after their bitter day's work on a settlement construction site. I was supposed to be a calm observer but I expressed my anger and soon after fell ill. I was no good to anyone for weeks.
More recently some intense unpaid international work has put a severe strain on my marriage.
So how can I lead a more balanced and sustainable life as someone who wants to bring more justice into the world?
If you want my answer look at www.schumacherinstitute.org.uk/aSALT and I've posted a youtube radio talk on the NatCAN site too.
But what's your answer?
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I've watched your video David (http://bit.ly/1otDXOn). Is that course you offer aimed to prevent activists' burn out or to cure it?
It's meant to help prevent it but it could work as a cure as well. I think it wouldn't work so well for an activist not quite knowing their direction, taking time out, because they'd be amongst people trying to establish direction and reflecting on their engagement (which could be an agravating experience). Perhaps there is no cure for burn out. Change work requires engaging with the vulnerable self to make connection with others and that is always risky. There's a cost. But the course should help, through its various methods and the diversity of the people who attend, get a sense of balance and perspective. Your thoughts?
Also check out the Sustaining Resistance courses that we've been running since 2009, mainly in the Catalan Pyrenees, and sometimes also in the UK (we're also currently supporting people in other countries to run ones adapted to their (activist) cultures).
Still to run in 2014 is a Sustaining Resistance and a Train the Trainers, both in October; there'll be more next spring and autumn too, with a UK course likely in late spring/early summer.
If you follow the link above, there's some writing and resources too on burn-out, resilience and more.