Nawal Slemiah co-founded the Women In Hebron co-operative in 2005 in the West Bank, Palestine. It began by selling handicrafts in the Old City market of Hebron – an area which is under Israeli military control. Nawal will be speaking in Brighton on Tuesday 23 October to tell the story of the co-operative and what it is like to operate under the Israeli Occupation.
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The co-operative now has more than 150 women producing items sold across the Hebron district. The co-op is part of the Idna Cooperative Association for Embroidery and Handicrafts which has been able to open a small community centre in Idna, a town in the Hebron district. Here members of the association can gather together to do their work and socialise.
From the co-operative’s website: “Our work is based on the idea that developing Palestinian handicrafts is more than just an income-generating project. It is in of itself an act of community-strengthening, of honoring the role of women in our society, and a means to show sumud – steadfastness – in the face of the occupation of Palestine and the harm it has done to the people of Hebron.”
Nawal will be bringing some of the goods produced by Women In Hebron and they will be available to buy at the event.
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Event details and accessibility
The talk will be free (donations welcome) and start at 7.30pm on Tuesday 23 October in the Lagoon Room at the BMECP Centre, 10A Fleet Street, Brighton, BN1 4ZE. Nawal will speak for an hour with space for questions afterwards. There will also be time to find out more about the organisers Mutual Aid In Sussex and local Palestine solidarity campaigns.
The venue is a 5-10 minute walk from Brighton railway station and is wheelchair accessible. There are shops nearby where food and drink can be purchased and there will be cold drinks and small snacks available on the night.
Find out more about Women In Hebron at their website. You can also watch this two minute video about the co-operative:
As part of Co-operatives Fortnight 2018 Brighton & Hove Community Land Trust (BHCLT) are organising a tour of local housing co-ops on Saturday 30 June, each with its own story. This is a chance to see some of the ways more genuinely affordable and co-operative housing has been created in the city.
The Big Lemon will be driving people between the housing co-ops in a minibus. There will be two tours on the day, one at 9.00am (bus leaves at 9.15am) and one at 12.45pm (bus leaves at 1pm). Each tour is approximately 4 hours long.
Tour 1 (morning) will call at Rosa Bridge, Hornbeam, Bug and Two Piers.
Tour 2 (afternoon) will call at Rosa Bridge, Dryad, Brighton Rock and Two Piers.
More information on all the co-ops, and practical information on the tour and accessibility, can be found here on the BHCLT website.
Co-operation among co-operatives is the sixth of seven principles which help co-operatives put their values into practice. They can be followed by any community minded organisation, whether they are formally a co-op or not.
Put Principle 6 into action and join us for a meeting and social get together between 6-9pm on Wednesday 6th June in the cafe of the Brighthelm Centre, North Road, Brighton, BN1 1YD. Free food will be provided.
The event is FREE but please register via eventbrite so we can keep track of numbers.
Co-ops South East have teamed up with Mutual Aid In Sussex (MAIS) to organise this event.
There will be a chance to introduce yourself, your project or business and ask for any advice or support you might want from others, as well as see where you can help others out. Anything can be asked for – whether it’s a computer, the number of a good plumber, advice on taxes or anything else.
We will also hear briefly about the results of the MAIS/Co-ops South East survey, including what support co-ops and community organisations want as well as initial ideas of future training we will help organise based on the survey. If you haven’t filled in the survey yet, please do so here – it’s just 10 questions.
There will also be time for getting to know each other and some of us will be heading to the pub afterwards to carry on the conversations.
We are working with Brighton & Hove Community Land Trust (BHCLT) to organise a workshop on how to set up a housing co-operative.
Housing co-operatives are one of many ways to create more genuinely affordable and secure housing in the city.
Helen Bartlett from Rosa Bridge housing co-op will be talking her experiences in setting it up on Thursday 17 May from 6:30PM in the Hanover room in the Brighthelm Centre, North Road, Brighton, BN1 1YD. (map here)
There will be time for both a brief introduction to housing co-ops as well as more in-depth advice on how to set them up, based on the experiences of Rosa Bridge. Space will be given for questions and getting to know others.
There are limited places available. Please email admin[at]bhclt.org.uk as soon as possible to find out more and sign up.
The workshop is free but participants need to become BHCLT members (fee £1). Join here: bhclt.org.uk/membership
More info on Rosa Bridge
Rosa Bridge is a small, queer, feminist co-op of five members, set up in 2014 with the help of a grant from the DCLG’s Empty Homes Programme. It is part of an old dairy in the Tarner area of Brighton.
Rosa Bridge aimed to take housing, especially in the city centre, away from private ownership and to be part of creating different alternatives to notions of ‘home’.
What is a housing co-op?
A brief introduction video to what is a housing co-op is below (focused on student housing co-ops, but relevant to all housing co-ops). Housing co-ops don’t have to be for students – there are several which already exist in Brighton & Hove for people of all ages, including Rosa Bridge housing co-op.
Co-operatives South East and Mutual Aid In Sussex (MAIS) are working together to survey co-operatives of all kinds between Worthing and Eastbourne (anyone within the BN postcode area) to find out where we can be the most useful and where there is most enthusiasm to build the co-operative movement in the area.
We would like as many co-op members as possible to fill it out, so please pass the survey on to all the members of your co-op.
Fill in the survey here
We are planning a joint meetup/social with Co-ops South East on the evening of Wednesday 6 June in Brighton. More information on that to come but save the date!
MAIS and Co-ops South East are meeting together on Wednesday 28 March at 7pm at on Blackman St (just off Trafalgar St).
We are working with Co-ops South East to survey co-ops in the city about the kinds of things they would want to get involved in and to try and strengthen both our networks.
We are planning organise some events and training throughout 2018, including regular meet ups to try and encourage mutual aid between those who want to live and/or work cooperatively in Brighton & Hove and so we can get to know each other better.
Please come along if you want to get more involved with organising.
Email email@example.com if you are coming so we can give you info on getting into the building.
The Brighton & Hove Community-Led Housing Programme is producing useful videos for housing co-ops, cohousing groups and groups self-build projects.
The Brighton & Hove Community-Led Housing Programme was launched on Wednesday 21 February and there are now videos from the event on the Brighton & Hove Community Land Trust website, including the full talks from Stephen Hill, Director at C2O futureplanners and a key player in community-led housing nationally; and Martyn Holmes of Brighton’s Bunker Self-Build Housing Co-op.
Here is a teaser:
The Programme is running a series of workshops for community-led housing groups throughout the year, with a focus on practical knowledge and skills.
The first took place on 24 February with Nathan Brown (Co-op Culture) giving an introduction to financial planning for community-led housing. Watch Nathan’s full presentation below:
To be kept up to date with similar workshops and events in the future, join the BHCLT mailing list here.
MAIS is working with Brighton & Hove Community Land Trust and Co-operative Housing in Brighton & Hove (CHIBAH) to run the Community-Led Housing Programme, supported from Brighton & Hove City Council (BHCC).
Find out more at: bhclt.org.uk