Social Power Scotland

A new space for change-makers

A new network for change-makers in Scotland

 The key ambition of Social Power Scotland is to explore whether there is value in creating a new space for change-makers to come together to pool knowledge, ideas and resources that could strengthen their ability to drive change – individually and collectively.  

Together, Scottish campaigners, community leaders and activists have designed a new network for change-makers from right across civil society in Scotland. It is based on a belief that there is value in civil society coming together across its parts, from people working deep in communities to people working on the national stage. That there is value in sharing perspectives across issues, in moving out of our siloes to explore common challenges. That we can learn a huge amount from each other as well as building energy and momentum by openly talking, sharing, pondering. 

That in coming together, civil society in Scotland can build its power to drive change individually and collectively.   

With support from the Corra Foundation, SMK hosted a pilot programme of six, monthly network sessions between January and June 2022.

Thurs 27 January, 2.30-4pm:  Is civil society too close to government in Scotland?

Tues 22 February, 2.30-4pm: Making progress when the people you need aren’t on board.

Thurs 31 March, 10-11.30am: What can we learn from what goes wrong as well as what goes right?

Tues 26 April, 10-11.30am: How do you know when you’re getting there?

Thurs 26 May, 2.30-4pm: Is involvement without tokenism possible?

Tues 21 June, 10-11.30am: Climbing out of our silos – can we tackle big issues together?

To round off the pilot phase, we are hosting a final event to discuss what we should recommend to funders for the future.

Shared ambitions

  • To bring people from civil society in Scotland together on issues which affect all of us 
  • To find solutions together 
  • To support each other to achieve our potential and increase our power for change 

    Shared values

    We believe: 

      • There is value in coming together across civil society in Scotland 
      • We have the expertise we need already amongst us 
      • We don’t wait or expect to be told the answers – we will find ways forward ourselves 
      • We welcome anyone who is working to achieve social change in Scotland – big, small, local, national, paid or voluntary 
      • We all participate in the spirit of inclusion, respect and non-judgement, the network will be a safe space 
      • We don’t have to have the solutions – just a willingness to reflect on our experiences of what has worked and what hasn’t. 

      How the sessions will work

      How the sessions will work  

      There will be monthly network events, each 90 minutes long, at which people from all over civil society in Scotland can meet and have challenging conversations. 

      We will set our own agendas, hear from others, make connections, pull out learning from successes as well as mistakes. Ultimately, we want to come away inspired and curious about what our own next steps could be and open to new possibilities. 

      For each session, we will choose a challenge to discuss. Two network members will kick things off, talking about how they have approached it. If you’d like to be one of these people, let us know. 

      We’ll then share our own experiences, swap intelligence and insights, consider where there are a gaps we need to fill, and what we can learn. 

      The sessions will be informal, with light touch facilitation just to keep things moving. 

      It’s not necessary to come to every meeting – pick and choose depending on what you want to contribute to and talk about. 

      We won’t engineer connections or communication after events. It will be for participants to share their contact details and take forward conversations with anyone they want to.  

      By organising this way, we will aim to be as self-sustaining as possible. 

      Building strong foundations

      This is a time-limited pilot project, but it has the potential grow into something exciting and long-lived. We aim to create something that can be sustained beyond the life of the initial funding. 

      Make the most of our virtual world

      The pandemic has taught us that the digital world is far more accessible for many people, but not for all. The current situation suggests we should meet online for now, but our vision would include some face-to-face events 

      Get in touch?

      If you have questions about Social Power Scotland, email [email protected] with the subject title ‘Social Power Scotland’.

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