As we stand on the verge of 2024, SCCAN Story Weaver Lesley Anne Rose takes a look back at 2023 and all that SCCAN achieved over the course of the year.
2023 was an incredible year for SCCAN. It saw the organisation expand and welcome new members and new members of staff. We made significant progress in the development of a network of regional Community Climate Action Hubs across Scotland. We delivered more training and events, and told more positive stories of community action against climate change than ever before. And much, much more…..
We Got Together
Our two member ‘Gatherings’ in 2023 were fantastic opportunities for us to get together, meet members, share knowledge, inspiration and stories.
In March we hosted our Annual Gathering in Edinburgh with a focus for the day of Reimagining Local Democracy. The Gathering kicked off with an inspiring keynote speech from Katherine Trebeck of WEAll – Wellbeing Economy Alliance on how communities are transforming the economy. Swiftly followed by Eva Schonveld and Justin Kenrick of Grassroots to Global leading an interactive session on reimagining local democracy. We also listened to and shared multiple stories of the positive action against climate change being taken at a community level across Scotland.
In September we gathered again, this time hosting a Northern Gathering in Inverness. Over the course of an intimate and inspiring day we connected with each other, nature, Active Hope, the Bardic Tradition and wrote Letters to the Earth.
Over the course of the year SCCAN also hosted ten other events including screenings of the films We the Power – The Future of Energy is Community Owned and The Seeds of Vandana Shiva. As well as talks on food growing, retrofitting, setting up a tool library, land justice, democratising finance and communities and climate and Artificial Intelligence.
We Expanded Our Core Team
We were thrilled to create two new roles within the SCCAN core team and welcome two new members of staff. Johanna Saunderson joined us as the new Member Engagement and Support Coordinator, a crucial role in liaising with and supporting the ever growing number of SCCAN members – both individuals and organisations. While Ruth McLaren came on board as SCCAN’s new Communications Weaver, helping us improve the quality and impact of our communications and keeping our members informed whilst also reaching a wider audience.
Rebecca Gibbs and Tara O’Leary joined SCCAN as the two new Programme Leads tasked with leading and supporting the development of SCCAN’s regional networks, while Craig Dunn took up the reigns as Operations Support Lead. Volunteers are crucial to SCCAN and we were delighted to offer Madeleine Scobie, who had previously volunteered for us, to take on a paid internship as a Content Creator and Media Assistant working on podcasts, video editing, managing the social media output and working with the fantastic comms volunteers to keep this up to date.
We couldn’t do it alone
SCCAN relies on the generosity and commitment of volunteers. A big thank you to all those who gave time, expertise, knowledge and support over the course of 2023. We benefited from well over 100 hours of volunteer time last year and look forward to working with all of our brilliant volunteers in 2024.
We Welcomed More Members
Thanks to the hard work of the whole SCCAN team we were delighted to hit the milestone of over 1000 memberships in 2023. The number of SCCAN members grew rapidly over the year and passing the target of over a 1000 memberships is an incredible achievement for us to have reached by the end of 2023.
We Created New Community Climate Action Hubs
Over the course of 2023 SCCAN made significant progress in the development of a network of regional Community Climate Action Hubs across Scotland. At the end of the year we received the news of our success in expanding the network to fourteen hubs with a number still in development. The network now consists of:
- the Highlands and Islands Climate Hub, (covering the Highlands, Orkney and Shetland)
- the NESCAN Hub (covering Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire)
- Fife Climate Action Hub delivered by the Fife Community Climate Action Network (FCCAN)
- Moray Climate Action Hub led by tsiMORAY
- The Outer Hebrides Climate Action Hub led by Climate Hebrides CIC
- The Scottish Borders https://sup.org.uk/projects/scottish-borders-climate-action-network-sbcan/
- Inverclyde led by the Inverclyde Community Development Trust
- Forth Valley delivered by Forth Environment Link
- Dundee delivered by a partnership of organisation led by Transition Dundee
- Dumfries & Galloway https://www.gsabiosphere.org.uk/what-we-do/dg-climate-hub/
- Angus https://www.angusclimatehub.co.uk/
- East Lothian https://sccan.scot/elcan/2024/01/10/east-lothian-climate-hub-launch/
- Midlothian https://midlothianclimateaction.org.uk/
- West Lothian Climate Action Hub
- Glasgow: https://www.gcah.scot/
- Argyll and Bute: https://www.act-now.org.uk/news/introducing-the-argyll-and-bute-climate-action-network-hub
- Edinburgh: https://eccan.scot/
The aim of the network is to provide a strategic regional approach to community climate change action across Scotland and each hub will which:
- build awareness of the climate emergency and actions local groups can take
- develop local plans.
- help groups take up funding opportunities.
- facilitate networking.
- ensure a more joined-up approach to tackling climate change at a regional level.
We Told More Stories
Telling stories of positive community action against climate change is a core part of SCCAN’s activity. We grew both our Story Weaver team and 1000 Better Stories initiative over the course of 2023. We released 23 podcasts including our new Everyday Changemakers episodes and 21 blogs posts including our new Member of the Month feature. All shining a spotlight on all of the amazing work and achievements of SCCAN members. We also awarded a raft of new mini grants supporting others to have voice and tell their positive stories of change.
We Shared Skills, Knowledge and Resources
Training is a key part of SCCAN’s activity. Our Story Weavers delivered a raft of workshops and skills shares and we also trained 35 new Climate for Change facilitators. Over the course of the year 21 Climate for Change conversations took place with over 130 people taking part and joining the conversation. We also supported 54 SCCAN members to undertake Zero Carbon Britain with the Centre of Alternative Technology.
You can check out the online resources we’ve added to over 2023 here.
Thank you to all of our members and supporters for a whirlwind of a year and for helping to make 2023 a milestone year for SCCAN. We look forward to working with you over the course of 2024 and making it an even better positive year of change and community action.