Talk About Grassroots
Published 21st October 2010 - 0 comments - 786 views -
For an engaged, enthused eager-beaver of a young person, the chance to meet your local MP (Member of Parliament) and actually talk to them about the things you care about is quite a treat. A rare one at that. MPs are so busy these days that in some parts of the country, it's nigh on impossible to get their undivided attention - which ultimately you need if you want to make change in your neck of the woods a reality.
A simple, yet genius idea. Take a park in the centre of London, invite some MPs and some passionate member of the public, and leave them to it. Old Palace Yard, Westminster was chosen and the event attracted some big names. From Stephen O'Brien, the current Under Secretary of State for International Development, and Dave Hampton, the Carbon Coach, to Niel Bowerman, who sat on Obama's Energy and Environment Policy Committee during his presidential election campaign.
The event, held last month, was the launch of a new campaign, Adopt an MP. They're working to get at least one young person in every constituency in the UK to adopt their local MP and push climate change up their agenda. That's 650 young people across the UK, all visitng their MP, sending letters, blogging their experiences and spreading the word. The idea is to encourage people to build up a personal relationship with their MP.
It has worked a treat. There are now people up and down the country who know their MP, and not just their name, party and election promise. They actually know them. I would say that this could be the start of something, but I won't. That's because I know it IS the start of something. A new era of politics, albeit on a small scale. And I must say, I'm quite excited.
[Click here to see some photos from the launch event]
About the author
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