October 27, 2011 by Simon
Yesterday Maria and I caught up with our good friend Mônica Picavêa, one of the co-founders of Transition Towns Brasil. Although many of you reading this blog will be more than familiar with the Transition Towns Movement, I wanted to speak to Mônica about the work she is doing in relation to the transition of organisations in Brazil.
Mônica works with organisations using the ingredients of the Transition Town Movement. She has also extended the methodology to include additional ingredients, to allow organisations to move away from just focussing on profit, to a more holistic view of themselves, which Mônica summarises as People, Purpose and Profit.
One thing that I would like to do is really work with Mônica to document how she is now working with organisations. This work is quite remarkable, since Brazil has many problems that are not the same that we have in the West, and what she is now able to do with this Transition methodology is help businesses integrate better into their communities. She focusses on making organisations become both more sustainable and resilient, while at the same time always having an eye on the financial performance of the company. In one large cabling company she is working with, they have discovered that they have become more efficient, less wasteful, more profitable, are winning more contracts, and seeing far less absenteeism as as result of their great transition, facilitated by Mônica.
This company also is now doing some wonderful work in their local community. They have revitalised and regenerated a local park, which now has a pitch for football and a car park, and they are also helping to create new local businesses to support their own employees, such as setting up a new bakery. Not only this, but waste products from their organisation are now in fact becoming the nutrients, or the raw materials for other companies which are being encouraged to be set up in the same vicinity, thus developing a resilient community.
So whereas before the organisation saw itself as isolated from the community, its employees are happier, more efficient, and the entire city is benefitting, with the mayor and local government officials now visiting and becoming interested in their work.
I have made this interview with Mônica in English, in oder to be able to start to bring these case studies of the great work in Brazil to a wider audience.
I also made a second video, which you can also see below, which was recorded in Portuguese with Maria Auxiliadora speaking to Mônica in depth about the issues being faced in Brazil, and what the implications are for this work.
As I say in the video, I hope to be able to make some more short films of the projects that are happening in Brazil, and I now have a video channel for Transition Consciousness where hopefully you will begin to see many more videos over the coming months.