It's a good people school.

Robert and Stacey Spring with lil’ Iris.

Robert and Stacey Spring with lil’ Iris.

By Groundswell alum Rob Wallace, Upbeet Farm

I’ve got my elevator pitch down now. (Thanks for the Monday morning practice guys!)

When people ask me what I’m up to these days, I find a smile involuntarily comes to my face and I say, “It’s good people school.”

“Huh?” or “What’s that?” is always the responce. So I say:

“It’s when you take really good people that want to do good things for others and they put them through a mini MBA plus a bunch of personal growth workshops and give them the tools to go out and start their awesome project.”

Always people get really stoked. I’ve never been questioned about Groundswell’s validity, which can happen when you propose a novel concept to people. It’s just so obvious that it needs to exist that when I explain it to people in these terms who have never even heard the social innovation or who’s ideas of contributing to a social impact cause is to buy something pink, they get it. Vancouver is a pretty progressive city, but we can forget sometimes that we may live in our own social bubble. It’s important to expand and test our ideas and opinions with people who don’t share our worldview. (Something I’m relearning in a big way at Groundswell.)

Of course we should be fostering and helping people to make a difference by giving them education on how to do so. Groundswell is much more than this simple explanation to me now. As I understand myself and my learning more within Groundswell, I’ll be expanding my definitions of it, too. So if you find yourself as I do, trying to describe it and failing a little bit like I have, try this one:

It’s good people school.