Solar panels, farmers market, small farm

Reskilling

Transition Companion cover

RESKILLING means acquiring and re-acquiring the skills we will need to manager the energy transition and other major changes that we face.

From The Transition Companion, by Rob Hopkins, founder of the Transition movement:

“…When discussing how a localized community would differ from how we live today, I consider my own experience. I remember when I was 18, going into the school where I did my A-levels, collecting my, frankly, pretty poor result, and then setting outside the school on the grass in the sunshine with a group of my friends, as we shared how we had done. I vividly remember looking around at my friends, thinking what a useless lot we were. None of us could cook, none of us could sew, and none of us could build, grow food, or repair anything. We didn’t know how to use a saw, a hammer, or a chisel. None of us had ever planted a tree, repaired a bicycle, or fixed a shoe. If we were all to be washed up on a desert island together I doubt that any of us would even have had the wherewithal to eat each other.

“I mention this because, for me, it illustrates how, as communities, we currently relate to each other. Let’s imagine several towns or cities which are almost entirely dependent on imported food, which produce very few of their own needs, and which depend for their food, energy, and most other necessities on cheap imports. The relationship between these neighboring communities is mutual uselessness, as all are highly dependent and unresilient. While there is huge potential for entrepreneurship and creativity, this is unfulfilled.

“Consider, instead, the relationship between an imaginary town/city and those around it if all are far more resilient, if they have vibrant local food economies, ownership of a percentage of their own energy generation, and more small-scale manufacturing. These places then meet and interact in a different way. There is a different quality to the relationship, as there is a difference between the meeting of two unskilled people as opposed to two people who feel confident in their ability to turn their hand to anything…”