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Sync: e-bulletin June 2010 easy read


Hard times

We can learn things in the bad times...

a cartoon of the cuts, giving money back and Big Ben behind

Britain hasn't got much money.

Every part of the UK is trying to make savings and having to make cuts in what they spend.

The Arts are the same. Last week, Arts Council England had to tell all the arts organisations it gives money to that this year they had to give some of it back.

Next year they might have to give even more money back - and Arts Council England will have a lot less money to give out.

Things will be hard, but when times are hard, we can still learn from them.

Finding out information can help – you need to know what’s happening, where and when and for whom.

Here are some leads you can follow to keep yourself in the know:

Arts Professional This is a link to their key reporting of the cuts so far:

And if you want to register for a free trial:

The Guardian There is a specific section with news on arts funding:

Arts Council England It's always worth checking ACE’s news section too:

They are not in easy read - why not ask them for easy read versions?

Sync Intensive profile: Robin Meader

I think everyone in the world has a need to have a story or we would be under a dark cloud. Sometimes people had a good story and something got in their way like bullying, politics, anti social behaviour or unhappy relationships. We sort out problems in stories and this can help us…(Robin Meader)

a silloette of a storyteller with images coming out of their mouth

When things are tough keep happy by finding out about other people and letting them inspire you.

This month, we are putting information about Robin Meader on the Sync site. He is in the Sync Intensives programme.

Robin works two days a week as Artistic Director of Open Storytellers, the only learning disabled storytelling company on the planet.

He loves telling stories and listening to other people's stories. Not all our stories are easy to tell and Robin also works at Somerset Self Advocacy helping other learning disabled people to speak out and be heard.

Robin is inspiring – only a few learning disabled people have jobs with real power and control. Do read about him and find out more.

Read the case study on Robin Meader

Rank and circumstance

A cartoon showing someone with more rank than another person.

Our article this month has been made with Bobby Baker.

It looks at something called rank, and how we create rank (and pull rank) within the disability community and within leadership circles. Rank is when someone has more position and voice than someone else. This can be a good thing and a bad thing.

In the disability world, learning disabled people have very low rank.

With leaders too, there is a rank - with some people being more powerful than others. This article asks us to think about we deal with rank.

Bobby has had a busy year. She has published a book called Diary Drawings: Mental Illness and Me.

You can enjoy the full article here:

More things to inspire you

a cartoon of a disabled person looking at the refreshers event

What else can inspire us and make us think differently?

  • Some people like reading books or looking on the internet
  • Some people like meeting people face to face
  • Some people like going to events and workshops.

On Sync, in our case studies section, you'll find lots of different people talking about how they lead (just go to the sync site, look in sync stuff and checkout the case studies - )

Or if you are in need of meeting people face to face and can get to London why not come to some things at CLP’s Re:freshers that we talked about it last month?

Sarah Pickthall will be blogging about the Re:freshers event in the next few weeks - so if you can't make it to London, you can still find out about it by going to the Re:freshers page on the CLP website.

Follow this link to go straight to the re:freshers page…

Final thought – what’s really important?

Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted (Albert Einstein)

a cartoon looking at someone deciding what's important

So times may be hard, but there are things that can inspire us and keep us thinking.

I watched a short video on TED that made me think.

Have you really thought about what makes your life worthwhile, and how you can bring that into the way in which you work?

It’s by a guy called Chip Conley, who owns a number of hotels in America. In it he looks at how we can measure what makes life worthwhile, rather than just measuring the money we make.

On the video, he asks us a question:

  • How do you feel about how you spent your time today?

This really made me think.

I thought about yesterday. It was sunny. I was at home. Inside, working. I kept saying to myself that I would make time to go outside, but I kept working and never went outside.

How do I feel about how I spent my time yesterday? I feel I wasted it. I didn't give myself time to just go outside and smile at the sun.

Chip talks about leading. About how leaders need to make organisations in which people can be happy.

I really like what he said:

Happiness is wanting what you have more than having what you want

But how do we bring this to our work? Chip says don't just count the money, but count the times you are happy, the times you step into the sun.

So today? It's another sunny and beautiful day and I made sure I enjoyed some of it.

To watch the TED talk:

A cat sprawled out in the sunshine

That's it for this month, and if you are like me, enjoy the sunshine!

Jo Verrent

Sync Project Manager

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