The Importance of Making - Locally

A note I sent to various colleagues some weeks back about the Melbourne Mini-Maker Faire, which is something we at the Culture and Contect Unit (of which I'm the "weaver," otherwise known as Director) have supported because of the importance, we think, of incubating more spaces for community "doing together"......

Dear friends, colleagues, acquaintances, contacts and connections,

A small request for help or ideas, which I hope you might have time to read in this often overly busy season….

The “maker movement” is a growing movement of people through which people learn small scale material construction and repair skills. The aim is to foster local community resilience and sustainability by increasing “making” skills in local communities. The focus of the movement to date has been on small scale technology skills but is increasingly expanding to include more traditional skills (woodwork and so on) and handcrafts.

I have been building some low key relationships with the movement on behalf of the Uniting Church because:

• There is some suggestion that the community building nature of the movement can provide alternatives to more intensive forms of community service and welfare in some circumstances.

• There is suggestion that the act of “making things together” can contribute to better relationships of people with different faith, political (etc) understandings

• There are opportunities for traditional community spaces in local areas (like church buildings) to be partners in helping to grow the movement.

On Saturday 14 January 2012 a Maker Faire is being held at Swinburne University’s Hawthorn (Melbourne) campus to showcase the emerging movement. The organisers are looking for people to “demonstrate their maker skill” at stalls on the day.

Do you know of anyone based in or around Melbourne who might be willing to show off a more non-high-tech or handcraft related maker skill?

If you know of anyone who would be willing to contribute, let me know their details and I will connect them to the organisers. The website for the event is

Warm regards,

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