Energage – training Community Energy Champions

Creating a network of Community Energy Champions network in Milton Keynes

We are delighted to announce that we have teamed up with the Open University to deliver a pilot project in Milton Keynes that will focus on recruiting and training community members to become volunteer Energy Champions in their neighbourhoods and communities.

The project has been made possible thanks to the funding from the Natural Environment Research Council as part of their recent funding call on ‘Engaging the UK public with the big issues of environmental science’. The Energage project is one of 18 across the UK – click here to find out more about this funding initiative.

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The initiative is the result of successful collaboration and partnership-working between Community Action: MK and the Open University through the MK:Smart and CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy, projects. It is also linked to the work of other local organisations in Milton Keynes that promote the concept of community-owned and sustainable energy. These include Transition MK, Wolverton Community Energy (through Citizens:mk) and others involved in MK Community Energy Alliance and other organisations who already provide energy training such as The National Energy Foundation and Citizens Advice Milton Keynes.

There is already a number of local volunteers who champion sustainable energy and environmental awareness in Milton Keynes, and we want to learn from their experiences. Further, we want to attract new people – anyone with an interest in energy and sustainability, and ways of helping their own communities be more sustainable is welcomed to get involved in the project, and is asked to please get in contact with Community Action: MK.

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Carbon Conversations event run by Transition MK in 2015. Photo credit: Transition MK

The Energage project will develop a network of Community Energy Champions (COMECs) in Milton Keynes. One important part of the COMECs’ role will be to translate energy-based research from the Open University to the general public in a way that will help them find solutions that work to reduce their own carbon footprint. In return Open University researchers will learn better ways to engage the public with their research. This exchange of knowledge will occur through a series of co-creation workshops, facilitated by Community Action: MK.

Another important part of their role will be to grow the network through recruitment of new volunteers. Initial workshops will be followed by a ‘week of action’ in which COMECs will engage with the public. They will share their experiences amongst the community engagement specialists and Open University researchers. This pilot scheme is intended to be the start of longer term engagement between Open University energy researchers and the public.

Energage hope to build upon activities of the existing CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy project at the Open University and lots of other energy-related initiatives across the city. The CAPE project aims to help reduce the carbon footprint of Milton Keynes by engaging the public with relevant data; it will also be linking homeowners identified as a good fit for energy saving measures (e.g. solar panels, loft insulation) with companies that can provide products, or to grant providers, such as the MK Council.

GET INVOLVED

We will be actively promoting the project in the next few weeks and updating you about its further plans. If you are interested in getting involved, please click here to register your interest or contact Anna at Community Action: MK on:

anna@communityactionmk.org

01908 661 623/ 07710 967131

#EnergageMK

www.facebook.com/groups/EnergageMK/

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Funded by:

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Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy Charities & Community Groups Communities Communities Can (Cultural Services Review 2016) Community Car Service Connecting Communities Conniburrow Consultation Eastern Expansion Area Employee Volunteering Engage MK Funding Great Linford Health & Wellbeing Jobs in the VCS Lakes Estate MK:Smart Netherfield New Communities News from and for the VCS Newton Leys People's Health Trust Projects Simpson & Ashland Volunteering Western Expansion Area Woughton

13-15 January: Startup Weekend in Milton Keynes

Our colleagues at the Milton Keynes office of Tech Mahindra, who work with us on the MK:Smart and CAPE projects, and support our Employee Volunteering Programme are holding a Startup Weekend in Milton Keynes. The event is being organised as part of the InnovateMK initiative.

Startup Weekend is the world’s starting point for entrepreneurship. It is a 54-hour event where designers, developers, marketers, and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, and launch startups. Tech Mahindra are organising the event with aim of fostering local entrepreneurship to strengthen local community.

The participants that attend have 60 seconds to make a pitch (optional), the pitches are whittled down to the top ideas, and then teams are formed around the ideas to come out with several developed companies or projects. Finally, the weekend culminates with demonstrations in front of an audience of judges and potential investors.

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Date and Time: 6.30pm 13th Jan to 8pm 15th Jan

Venue: InnovateMK, Tech Mahindra, 1st floor, 401 Grafton Gate East, MK9 1AT

Registration and more details:  http://bit.ly/2i4iu2L

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Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy MK:Smart Projects

5th Jan 2017 – New Year’s Resolutions with Transition MK

Free event for anyone in Milton Keynes

New Year’s Resolutions – what can we all do to make to make the biggest difference?

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Come along to the first Transition MK meeting of 2017 and be inspired by short films about some of the activities of other UK Transition groups. It will also be your chance to discuss what our priorities for 2017 should be, and enjoy some networking.

Thursday 5th January 2017, 7pm – 9pm at Centrecom in CMK (MK93BJ).

Sign up on Eventbrite: https://tmkfilmnight1.eventbrite.co.uk

To find out more about Transition MK, visit: www.transitionmk.com

Follow Transition MK on Twitter here.

Join Transition MK Facebook group here.

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Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy Charities & Community Groups Communities MK:Smart Projects Volunteering

Happy Christmas from Community Action: MK

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We would like to wish all our friends in the Voluntary and Community Sector organisations in Milton Keynes as well as our members and partners a very Merry Christmas!

Thank you for all your support and collaboration this year. We very much look forward to working with you and supporting you in the New Year 2017, and continuing to promote the amazing work of our communities, voluntary organisations and volunteers!

 

Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy Charities & Community Groups Communities Connecting Communities Employee Volunteering Engage MK MK:Smart New Communities News from and for the VCS People's Health Trust Projects Volunteering

Volunteer Spotlight: Tariq Raja

We’re sharing stories about amazing volunteers giving their time in Milton Keynes. This spotlight is on Tariq Raja, who has been volunteering at Community Action: MK.

Tariq started supporting Community Action: MK in May 2016 and has been incredibly helpful since that time. Tariq’s main role has been in supporting the development of the type of support we offer to citizens in Milton Keynes, this has involved doing background research about social enterprises and other models, meeting other local organisations, getting to know people we have already supported locally and helping some of them to take their ideas further. Rebecca Brown, a member of our Community Engagement Team has said:

‘Tariq has really used his fresh pair of eyes and an outside perspective to advise and help us to improve our service.’

Tariq has also helped out with other activities such as community engagement, our website and communications, and he has been actively supporting some of the citizen projects funded and supported by the Our MK platform.

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Tariq helping to deliver a Raspberry Pi session to students at the STEM Club at MK Academy as part of the Our MK – funded Community Computing project. Photo credit: Community Action: MK.

Tariq makes conscious effort to take himself out of his comfort zone in order to benefit the wider society. As a Muslim he has found that there is a large cultural divide between organisations such as ours and the people within his religious group. Therefore he is striving to bridge the gap. He is now starting to support Community Action: MK to reach out to minority groups by supporting the delivery of an equality workshops for those harder to reach ethnic groups and his insight is proving very valuable. Tariq hopes to understand where his skills fit into the Voluntary Sector and use this to support communities.

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Tariq delivering leaflets and engaging with residents in Broughton Gate about the Water Monitor project as part of MK: Smart. Photo credit: Community Action: MK.

Our team at Community Action: MK absolutely enjoys working with Tariq and we thoroughly appreciate his volunteering support – thank you Tariq!

Interested in volunteering? Get involved in with lots of roles available via Community Action: MK. Search our bank of MK Volunteering roles now to find your place and explore the brand new Volunteering Platform for Milton Keynes – Volunteer Connect

Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy MK:Smart Projects Volunteering

THIS THURSDAY: Film Showing at Centrecom

Free film night in Central Milton Keynes

Come along to the next film-showing organised by Transition MK, dedicated to Energy DIY and ways of making our homes more energy-efficient this winter and beyond.

This Thursday – 7-9PM at Centrecom (MK9 3BJ).

Register on Eventbrite: www.tmkfilms.eventbrite.co.uk.

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@TransitionMK

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We are hiring!

Community Action: MK are recruiting for a number of full and part time positions in our Community Development Team. See more information below about the positions available.


Community Development Team Member (various roles available)

  • Full or Part time opportunities available
  • £22,387 per annum (pro rata)
  • Fixed term until June 2017, with possibility of extension dependant on funding.

Here at Community Action: MK we support the amazing work happening in and around Milton Keynes’ communities. We support local people to take action in their community whether part of a charity, a community group or an individual looking to make a difference. We are looking for passionate individuals to join our Community Development Team. As a team we deliver various Community Development contracts across Milton Keynes and we are looking for people that can join a flexible team that supports a variety of projects.

Download the Full Job Description & Personal Specification.

Download the Application Form.

Read our Equal Opportunities Statement.

Download our Equal Opportunities Form.

If you have any questions regarding this opportunity please contact Julie on 01908 661623 or julie@communityactionmk.org.

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Please complete our application form and return it via post or email to info@communityactionmk.org by 4th December 2016.

Please note we do not accept CVs.

A selection event and interviews will be held on 12th December 2016.

 

Blog Post CAPE, Community Action Platform for Energy Charities & Community Groups Communities Communities Can (Cultural Services Review 2016) Community Car Service Connecting Communities Conniburrow Consultation Eastern Expansion Area Employee Volunteering Engage MK Funding Great Linford Health & Wellbeing Jobs in the VCS Lakes Estate MK:Smart Netherfield New Communities News from and for the VCS Newton Leys People's Health Trust Projects Simpson & Ashland Volunteering Western Expansion Area Woughton