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Tuesday
Jul312012

Anything is possible if we believe in it...

The following is written by Greg Griffith, a writer, local Brixton resident, Skills Camps graduate, participant in a recent Social Startup Lab and volunteer blogger for London Creative Labs.

 

 Anything is possible if we believe in it and in this economic climate we often feel restricted that there are no jobs out there.

* Is the recession just a mindset of an individual?

* Do we feel that companies will not invest in our ideas because it's not marketable and it's too much of a risk'
* How do we achieve the impossible?
* Can we really set up a business in a time like this?



The answer is yes and London Creative Labs aims to help people create their own work. It's all about generating different ways of starting a business without feeling restricted.  If there are any restrictions, then what can you do to overcome them?

I attended as a volunteer (blogger/writer) and as a particpant at one of their events which was a Social Startup Lab on Monday 16th July 2012.  This event took place at the Brix at St Matthews in Brixton from 12pm til 8pm.  I was thinking it was gonna be a very long and tiring day but the flow of it was excellent.

 
Sofia Bustamante started off the session with a introduction about how the organisation got started.  The idea of London Creative Labs was given birth through a trip to Bangladesh in June 2009. She got an insight into the Grameen organisation and this is where her destiny became clear. In the same way that the Grameen organisation are reducing poverty in Bangladesh, London Creative Labs aims to tackle poverty in London and increase employment.

The session went onto working on identifying everyones assets. These assets were put on a board for people to share and network. For example if someone needed a web designer then it would be possible for that person to find one on the board. This was broken down to an individual asset or a community asset such as a hall or computer equipment.  Someone might need a hall to teach yoga lessons or unused computer equipment for a homework club.

The next part of the session were the needs of the individual and the community.If somebody has a lack of finance or confidence etc then yet again people can network through that board for help.
The last part of that exercise was on another separate board for opportunities.  Each individual could place an opportunity on the board for everyone to see.

This would lead on to the next exercise (after a "lunch" break) forming groups either based on the opportunities or an individual's business idea.  The groups that were formed included coaching, healthy food and internet TV by the communityfor the community.  This was just a few of the seven groups that formed and I was a leader of my own group.

My group members were part of London Creative Labs team (Vicky Barambones and Nicholas Owkulu.)  They were helping me to paint a bigger picture in order to have a focused mindset towards business.  It opened up possibilities that I never considered for releasing my book and comic book.  Even though I was the leader, I would be nothing without a team.

During the end of the session everyone shared what they gained from the session.
It was good to see that people got a clearer vision of where they are heading and that they have a field of opportunities in front of them.

I do see the Social Startup Lab as both as a networking event and a thinking outof the box session.  This event will benefit those who want to create opportunities for themselves.  Even if you are not sure in the direction your business could go towards then this might give you a small boost.

It was also great to know that snacks and food were donated by the Best Before Project which distributes (best before) food to charities and community groups.


London Creative Labs have an organic mindset and offer a different way to look at creating or finding work.  I definitely recommend coming to one of their events and seeing it for yourself, it's not an opportunity not to be missed.

I would like to thank Sofia, Sylvana, Mamading, Annette, Rocio, Vicky, Nicholas and the London Creative Labs volunteers for giving the community a truly awesome experience.

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