Islands & Climate Workshop Creates Strong Bonds and Inspired Ideas

We just finished up an incredible 4-day Islands & Climate Catalyst Workshop with an inspiring group of change-makers at Alnoba in Kensington, New Hampshire. The workshop was a great success, bringing together filmmakers, strategists, and organizations from all over the world - including participants from Fiji, India, and around the continental US. We are excited about all of the new connections that have been made and that our participants built a valuable network of resources personally and professionally.

The workshop ran from November 10-13 and was filled with incredibly talented professionals who are doing solid work to create action in climate-focused areas. Workshop participants worked on four Capstone Projects with our workshop organization partners. The Capstone projects they developed were truly impressive, each one utilizing the skills of the individual team members and improving upon lessons learned from the presentations given at the workshop. Workshop participants included a Communications Coordinator for the Better Future Project / 350 Mass, the Marketing Manager for the Ocean Foundation, the Communications Director for the Coalition To Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL), a producer for the New Orleans Video Access Center (NOVAC), a leader from the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA), a campaigner for 350.org Pacific, a digital communications strategist, mulitple independent filmmakers, the director of the Oceanview Foundation, the COO and filmmaker from DC Visionaries, and a founding partner from EARTH CoLab in India. We were speechless at the talent, passion and experience of the change-makers we welcomed to the workshop.

Our workshop partners included some incredible organizations who are working on the effects of climate on our islands and coasts, including the Coalition To Restore Coastal Louisiana (CRCL), the Oceanview Foundation the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) and 350.org Pacific. Our CMG team of David, Liz, and Margie was once again joined by Melissa Thompson, Former Senior Video Producer for Greenpeace, and Danny De Bonis, Online Video Strategist, to run the 4-day workshop as leaders, presenters, logistics coordinators, and support for the participants as they completed their Capstone Projects.  We also had a variety of knowledgable speakers who joined us including Philip Conkling, founder of the Island Institute, and Angelica Das from Dot Connector Studio. Philip was able to offer direct personal insight to the group from his time with the Island Institute, and Angelica lent her expertise on impact strategies as she met with each group individually offering them support on their specific projects.

While working with the teams on their call-to-action videos and engagement strategies, we also learned about the threat of land loss in coastal Louisiana and an organization dedicated to it's coastal restoration (http://www.crcl.org/), an island community organization that educates visitors and residents on environmental issues facing Block Island (www.oceanviewfoundation.org), a youth led grassroots network working with communities to fight climate change from the Pacific Islands (www.350pacific.org), and an organization promoting action to build resilient and sustainable island communities (www.glispa.org). At the workshop each of these organizations was paired with 2-3 strategists and filmmakers, who offered insight into the organization's mission and goals and helped the organizations construct a brief concept video visually expressing their goals.  Each of the groups presented their concept video on the last evening of the workshop, and each one was thoughtfully executed and well done. The level of support and passion that each group had was felt strongly on the final night of the workshop, as each group encouraged and supported each other. The group of participants, leaders and speakers left the workshop motivated to continue good work and maintain the strong professional and personal connections made in only a few short days.

Watch our Facebook feed for more info about how these organizations and amazing individuals are moving their own professional work and the Catalyst Capstone projects forward. We can't wait to see what they do next!