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  • Ciaran Murphy created a blog entry Ojai Training - Step...
    Over the course of 5 days, from July 25th to 29th, Generation Waking Up held a Leadership Training, by the alluring Ojai Valley in Southern California. Twenty-four people from all over California, Washington, New York, and Florida, including myself and a 6-month young budding baby, were in attendance. The group was composed of such a wide and diverse array of people that it definitely made for an extremely insightful time. During the five days, everyone involved, facilitators and participants alike, experienced dynamic interaction and reflection, which helped provide the tools needed to create transformational change in the world. I connected with others through synchronous passions, became more aware of pressing issues and my place in their solutions, and was left inspired to go create change. With so many different backgrounds, interests, and ideas represented, the people I met at the training taught me so much. I was humbled by the knowledge and innovative ideas brought to every conversation, whether it be about environmental preservation, social justice, or spiritual consciousness. Before this experience, I would often feel disconnected from change-making networks and without the ability to make a difference of any sort. Hearing other people's stories helped me to reaffirm my current capacity to make change. I felt so much love from every individual that it gave me great hope for our collective future. Indeed, everybody's unconditional trust and kindness quickly whittled away at my own shell of insecurity and misgivings. My own growth over the training was influenced by the extraordinary space the experience created for profound and honest dialogue. My time in Ojai was an intense reminder to me of the power within each of us! From the beginning, we dove, hearts first, into issues of mass incarceration, environmental degradation, poverty, war, and much more. Defining and creating solutions to these plaguing issues almost seemed easy with all the passionate minds meshing their reservoirs of experience and knowledge onto paper. The training called for much collaborative exercise as well as self-exercise. At many points we had the chance to ruminate individually and then come back to the circle where we could share our unique and transformative perspectives. We thought about where we are as a global community now and where we would like to be in the future. This sparked a lot of desire for immediate action and a lot of step-by-step thinking. The training gave much room for introspection and I was able to search for ways in which my own passions might meet the needs of our world. It was revitalizing to visualize how acting on my passions could forge tangible difference in our society. Our whole Ojai crew fearlessly immersed themselves in the experience and we all came away with a renewed sense of what must be done. I left this training more than inspired. I left with a healthy sense of responsibility for my time here on earth. I left with a readiness to take on my piece of the puzzle. It will take a great deal of leadership to shift the modern paradigms, which have been of harm to society since their births. I am willing to accept the challenge and put forth my passions and time toward the revolution and reinvention of our world. With the closing of the training was a sadness to know I would be parting from the tight community we had all formed over our short week, but this feeling quickly receded in the swell of excitement to plant the seeds of change I had discovered.
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  • Ciaran Murphy created a blog entry Home: A Thriving Mis...
    Home is a place to rest your head at night, to ready yourself for the next day. Home is where you can feel safe and comfortable, a place of refuge. It's where families grow and tend to each other. Shelter is an integral part to our lives and allows us to function properly. It's disturbing to think that many people don't have access to stable living conditions and are deprived of what I believe is a modern human right, shelter. In efforts to provide society with housing, The East Oakland Community Project has taken it upon themselves to offer housing to homeless families and individuals in need. As the emerging Millennial generation continues to take root, today's up and coming youth have made change-making efforts through the EOCP and other such organizations. The East Oakland Community Project has taken great strides in helping people reach their full potential. Not only do they take housing into their own hands, but they have also acted as "life coaches" to those who come to them in need. The EOCP has a plethora of resources for those looking for guidance out of addiction or help with parental care. Addiction has been shown to be one of the leading causes for homelessness and it is vital to address it if we are to work towards shelter availability for all. The parental care aid that the EOCP offers to families is so important to the holistic growth of families who have experienced hardship. The family unit offers a nurturing environment as one generation aids the emergence of the next generation and the EOCP has done so much to ensure this. The East Oakland Community Project has also taken great action in "going green," as we enter this new age of environmental mindfulness. One of the newer housing developments is equipped with clean energy solar panels and is made with eco-friendly materials. Among other green efforts, the menus at the residential cafeterias include a diverse array of foods that promote healthy living, as the clientele work to bring balance in their lives and conquer the world around them. We are at a point in time where great movement toward a just and sustainable world must be made. The EOCP has sought to take care of many pressing issues that we face today in a holistic yet focused manner. This is just what society needs, unification in efforts to rid the world of its ailments. Shelter is without a doubt an important issue in today's world due to the effects of urbanization and fiscal barriers. The EOCP has sparked many productive lives by fostering the homeless that have come to them. While the Millennial generation has a hefty challenge ahead, through embracing values similar to those the EOCP lives, we can surely make meaningful advances towards a truly just and sustainable world. In order to make meaningful change, it's necessary to take action while keeping in mind how all of our issues, locally and globally, are interconnected. At Generation Waking Up, much of the work supports individuals in following their passions and integrating these passions into tangible, progressive change in the world. After becoming familiar with only a few change-making organizations, it's easy to see the endless opportunity to immerse oneself in loving and purposeful projects such as those which the EOCP has created. Powerful inspiration often comes from simply being active in these communities powered by their desire to create change. And there's no shortage of opportunity to get involved! In the Bay Area of California alone, there are hundreds and hundreds of organizations looking to include people in their transformative work. The link below provides info to many of these organizations. It really is time to get involved. It is time to connect passion with revolution. We are all pieces to a solution that humanity needs to move towards. Link: http://greatnonprofits.org/  
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  • As we mark the midway point of the year, it’s time again to celebrate the amazing impact of the GenUp network. Here are some stories of the work accomplished in the last few months!

    WAKEUPS Over 3,000 people have participated in WakeUps already in 2014! Some of the highlights:

    • California Student Sustainability Coalition—Santa Barbara, California At the CSSC Convergence at UC Santa Barbara, David Brown facilitated a 40-person WakeUp in 90 minutes. The WakeUp had no videos and took place outside in a circle, “council-style,” allowing more focus on the group facilitation for the short window. Two people were so moved that they came to the West Coast Training in Ojai!

    • Artists for the Earth—Harare, Zimbabwe Ngonidzashe Edward, a Jesuit and the founder of Young People Making a Difference Zimbabwe, incorporated the WakeUp into a three-day “Artists for the Earth Awareness Workshop” in Harare. 38 community artists came together to learn about environmental degradation and climate change, and to brainstorm how to use their art to address those issues and transform their communities.

    • Hook Up For Good—Auckland, Australia At the beginning of the school year at the University of Auckland, Nalini Singh presented a WakeUp for 70 university students. The event, "Hook Up For Good," showcased all social justice and environmental clubs at the university, provided them with an opportunity to network with each other, and featured spoken word performances.

    • Bishop O'Dowd High School—Oakland, California Bishop O’Dowd brought in Joshua Gorman and Barbara Jefferson to lead all 1,100 high school students in a short WakeUp (pictured above). The assembly commemorated Earth Week and the opening of a new Center of Environmental Studies at the school.

    • Young Jains of America—Washington, D.C. Mercy Carpenter and Jebe Moiwai led two shortened, highly interactive WakeUps for over fifty people each at the Young Jains of America conference in Washington, D.C.
    • Earth Day WakeUp—Petaluma, California Angelo Silva and Elena Frink led an Earth Day-themed WakeUp at Lydia’s Organics in Petaluma, California for an intergenerational group of 20 participants.
    • WakeUp Tour—Southern California Puma Garcia, David Daniel, and other fantastic GenUp community members collaborated to put on a "WakeUp tour" in the L.A. area. They held WakeUps at Full Circle Venice, the Ojai Foundation, and (with a group from the recent GenUp training in Ojai) the Amity Foundation.
    CONNECT WITH THE WAKEUP FACILITATOR COMMUNITY ON AUGUST 2 On Saturday, August 2, join the WakeUp facilitator community for a conference call. We'll spend a fun and dynamic hour together connecting more deeply with the community, celebrating everyone's accomplishments, and looking ahead toward the fall. Please join us whether you’re a seasoned facilitator or you’ve never hosted a WakeUp before! Those of you fresh from summer trainings are especially encouraged to call in, as we'll be answering questions and sharing tips for holding successful events. RSVP with your time preference here.

    Thanks to all of our community members for your boldness, your heart, and your dedication to bringing forth a thriving, just, and sustainable world!

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  • Ciaran Murphy created a blog entry A Summer of Action...
    [caption id="attachment_1734" align="alignleft" width="225" caption="Impact Hub, Oakland"][/caption]

    Ciaran Murphy here! I'm a San Francisco native and I will be working as a fellow with GenUp over the course of the summer. After finishing my first year at Boston College, I'm riding a post-finals "high" and getting ready for a summer where I can put my passions into action. 

    GenUp has taken the initiative in going ahead to find ways in approaching the complications which the modern world faces. Problems such as environmental change, social inequity, and materialistic tendencies have grown to heights where action is in dire need.  At the root of all these problems is humanity continuously straying away from balance and a growing inclination towards acting on self-desire. Now, there is an urgency for action in response to these unfortunate happenings. Not only is there a need for change in action, but also a need for change in thought. Action can be seen as a vehicle for thought, and if people come to realize that just principles and regard for environmental preservation are better suited for a thriving global community, then the motives behind the actions will have powerful potential.

    [caption id="attachment_1733" align="alignright" width="225" caption="Dad and I after exhilarating bike ride"][/caption]

    Personally, I have become aware of the need for a change in our ways through the influence of those close to me. In seeing how my dad questioned traditional beliefs and the ways of the modern world I started to follow suit. My realization that there was work to be done here on earth stemmed from this aptness to question what was around me. I believe beneficial change can come from constantly challenging pre-existing views and challenging your own views as well. This constant questioning has led me to a different perspective that I can now act upon here at GenUp.

    In college I have been able to pursue my interest in science to much greater levels. After learning much about evolution, the molecular world, and energetics, I have expanded greatly on my view of the natural world and the way in which energy is transferred. I have come to understand the role of humans and their effects on the earth through the transfer of energy. Presently, I believe we have skewed this transfer of energy and I hope to work towards restoring that balance—or, at least, to make efforts in redirecting us towards it.

    A special experience at Glide Memorial in San Francisco has guided me along and influenced my views of humanity. Over the summer of 2012, I had the chance to volunteer at Glide's homeless services for many breakfast, lunch, and dinner shifts. Lucky for me, I was able to interact with the clients and fellow workers everyday. I met a man named Hank who volunteered there on a daily basis, and I have not stopped talking about him to friends and family since I stopped habitually going to Glide. He was homeless himself and decided to live through the Glide Community, not just as a client, but as a helping hand. It astounded me that this man loved the community he was in so much that he would center his life around it. He had no regard for society's paved paths nor did he have any inclination to financially support himself, he simply found his passion and acted on it. I think that's somewhat of a rare thing to see today; he didn't seek reward, and it was inspiring to see this man live selflessly for his community. After spending time around Hank and the people of the Glide community, I was moved to a greater level of appreciation. I have integrated the values I found there into my own goals and will continue to do so moving forward.

    That brings me to my reason for being here at GenUp. I intend to use my time here to further the reach of GenUp's and my own message. Also, I would like to improve upon my understanding of  what tangible actions can be taken to lead us to a just and sustainable world. As I embark on fulfilling my role as a fellow I would like to help further the goals of the GenUp members' projects and work in implementing an effective Thrive Fellows program. I hope to fully immerse myself in the leadership training programs to gain insight on the dynamics of team building as well as putting my passions into action. Finally, I would like to dig deep into the values and messages of GenUp, which I will have time to internalize as I work and learn, ultimately relaying them to the people within my social and academic networks.

    There is a lack of balance in our construction of society and I hope my time at GenUp will aid the necessary shift in thought and action.

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