Laura Cuthbert is one of the 22 RADIUS Fellows in Radical Doing in our second cohort. Here she reports back from last week’s concAUCTION: Ask. Source. Connect. All photos by Fellow Jackie Dives.
Growing up, my Dad was an auctioneer: a deal making, cash in hand, all-business, fast talking auctioneer. Deal making, because he’d trade fixtures when someone couldn’t afford what they needed. Cash in hand, but no guarantee of how much. All-business, because anyone was welcome. And fast talking, because he was afraid to miss out on anything. It’s genetic.
Five months ago, when I had first applied for the RADIUS Fellowship in Radical Doing, I was most concerned about competition. I wondered about meeting 21 other changemakers—young and ambitious. But those fears subsided.
Every Fellow is doing something I’m proud of; everyone is worth being proud of. Where I thought RADIUS was going to build up my professional connections, it’s instead done more: built those connections into friends. concAUCTION was the best of our team: unique, funny, and insightful requests. All pitched to an engaged and diverse audience.
Before starting this post, I googled the meaning of “concoction,” half because I just kept picturing witches brewing a potion, and half because I wanted the exact definition: “a mixture of various ingredients or elements.” So, although my witches brewing idea definitely applies, so too do the RADIUS fellows—in all of the experience we meld together. The emcees, Tamara and Ajay, there to stir the pot, reduce, and simmer. And us, all there to add the eyes of various newts, wings of bats, and other witchy stuff. Metaphors have never really been my thing.
We had one minute to pitch our projects and needs. concAUCTION created space for us all to “Ask. Source. Connect.” So what could people really ask for in one minute?
- Kevin (@KevinKimoto) is spreading the word about UpRoot, and is looking for classes and youth groups to get engaged with their workshops.
- Gabby of @Binners_Project wants your used smartphones to help connect with DTES residents.
- Andrew is looking to make more connections with people living in Copenhagen as he heads overseas to attend design school.
- Milica is looking for web developer support to help build a hub for health providers.
- Jasmine is an experiential educator looking to connect with teachers, and create a platform that enables teachers to connect with their communities.
- Darcy (@darcykeester) is looking for anyone with space to showcase upcycling projects and new upcycled design made by Upcycle Vancouver.
- Sonam (@sonamswarup) wants to hear your story of reaching out for help with burnout.
- Kevin (@kevinharding) is looking for new clients and collaborators for @incipecoop!
- Jannika (@artquake411) is an educator seeking collaborators in developing relevant, experiential educational content that creates space for agency in civic engagement for BC students.
- Kamilah (@coastalkamilah) is looking for support building digital engagement for SFU Vancouver.
- Jenna (@jennalmcneil) wants collaborators, practitioners, and funding strategists for an urban tree canopy project!
- Dennis (@dataisfan) will soon move to Toronto and wants to talk to you before he goes.
- Natasha (@natashathom) survived cancer, and is building The Lipstick Project for wellness for people living in hospices. She is recruiting new hair stylists and aestheticians.
- Hilary (@HilaryKilgour) wants to build a network of circles, for support and information sharing!
- Amy (@amy_lubik) is looking to pivot her cancer researching skills into public health advocacy, and find her very best home.
- Ivy (@ivystaker) asks for help building interdependence. And creating an event this summer with Building Caring Communities.
- Chris wants to work with more changemakers to build their digital presence – talk to him to help beta test!
- Jackie (@divesin) wants to take your photos! So she can support her social justice photograph, which is mostly done pro bono.
- Yana (@yankakab) wants your recommendations of public spaces, she can set up her “Mini Missions,” and inject fun into your day to day.
- Brent (@Mavrixx_) is looking for funding, sponsorship, and help to raise mental health awareness, and climb literal mountains. As he pursues his dream of being the first person living with schizophrenia to climb Mount Everest.
- And me (@lauracuthbert13), I want you to share your passions, for one hour a month, with Kudoz. A new adult learning exchange for people living with developmental disabilities.
An auction with no bidding, no competition. Only people coming together to talk about our barriers in making the next leap.
I can’t help but think this is the kind of auction my Dad would have wanted. One he didn’t know he was working towards. Our crew is such a blend, a concoction if you will, of entrepreneurs, citizens, nerds, designers, and educators. But we really jive.
In a night full of asks, I know RADIUS is a place for answers. The fellowship ends in just a few weeks—but we’ve built a community. We fill in each other’s gaps. There’s a great feeling, knowing that the bonds we’ve made will allow us much more than one minute to connect on the help we need.
RADIUS thanks RECODE and the SFU Sustainability Office for their continued support of the RADIUS Fellowship Program. We also say a big thank you to all the fine folks who supported us in pulling together this high energy evening of changemaker collaboration: the BC Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation, Spread’em Kitchen, Beanfields Chips, Guakayi Yerba Mate, Naked Snacks, Dogwood Brewing, Nesters Market, and Potluck Catering.
Finally, a big thank you goes out to our friend and collaborator, Ajay Puri (@masalapuri) for his willingness to step into the role of Auctioneer.
Check out more event photos on RADIUS’ Facebook page.