Mon 21 Nov 2016 12:37AM

The structure of a Mindfulness for Change community

NL Nick Laurence Public Seen by 422

Going into the second hui, we're wanting to make decisions about how we want to be as a network so that it's easier to do things within Mindfulness for Change. Central to this is the structure of our community, as this affects governance, openness, and the processes of adding new contributors. This thread is for discussion of the structure of our community.


Nick Laurence Mon 21 Nov 2016 12:45AM

This attached image is the structure that Martin, Sam and I proposed at the first hui. It is an evolution of a model that’s popular in community development circles (pun intended), and is the community model that Enspiral have used. The basic premise is the rule of 10: in each circle outwards, there are 10 times as many people and 10 times less commitment expected, and vice versa.

Implicit in this proposal is the creation of Shared-holders and Contributors, and an agreement on how new contributors and shared-holders are added:

  • Shared-holder circles: everyone trusts everyone here. Shared-holders make up a high trust group within each community. In a shared-holder group, everyone trusts everyone, and all shared-holders must approve the addition of a new shared-holder.
  • Contributor circles: everyone is trusted by at least one person. Shared-holders have the power to approve new contributors. Only one shared-holder needs to approve the addition of a new contributor. Contributors have access to Slack and Loomio, and can request that shared-holders add new contributors.

I plan to propose that we adopt this model as a prototype for how MfC communities are organised. This would also eventually allow for multiple communities in the network - i.e. there could be a MfC Wellington Community, a MfC Auckland Community, and even an MfC Sydney community, all with their own nexus of shared-holders and contributors. This thread is a chance to discuss this model and raise any questions or disagreements - please speak up if you have concerns!


Caroline Taylor Mon 21 Nov 2016 1:17AM

I really like this model @nicklaurence and from my involvement with Enspiral as a contributor it seems to work well in that context. I'd be keen to hear more from an Enspiral shared-holder what its like being in that circle, how it works for them and how they relate to the other circles - is an Enspiral shared-holder coming to Hui 2 who could speak to this? I'm also interested to know how the various communities would relate to each other?


Sarrah Jayne Tue 22 Nov 2016 2:54AM

I like the idea of the model. I am not an enspiral contributor but am closely linked and have heard murmers of how this model has worked well to a point but did grow and expand more rapidly than expected perhaps?? So I could see that when it grows fast the number of contributors puts pressure on the number of shared holders and if that circle is not growing as quickly could result in stress or burn out. @carolinetaylor I could see a nice overlap of the outer circle of different communities coming together for different causes etc and resource sharing but still being independent. I could share my experienced with Off The Mat and how NZ and Australia have interacted and formed separate communities but maintaining connection. I Think one key is a few strong relationships perhaps across shared holders.


Jan Rivers Fri 16 Dec 2016 10:25AM

This is pretty much impled in the diagram but I thought worth writing out. I was thinking that there are two roles at each of the outer layers. Firstly the responsibilities / role of an organisation or individual community member or contributor and secondly events that are run, or resources created as community member or contributor. This would mean that a document with three parts would outline the role of shared holder and shared holder commitments and then a second couple of pieces to describe the roles of contributor and community and this would need to cover off events run as contributor or community as well as roles. Contributor events would need to be "signed up to" the objectives and purpose of MfC but community events would be "informed by" the objectives and purpose of MfC ie a lower bar. Both categories would allow them respectively to use the MfC rainbow swoosh and the name. I'm thinking specifically of something at SATRS in May/June on flourishing - human and planetary and that might be a potential MfC community event.
(This could be represented easily in the diagram as well