At Save the Children we’re acutely conscious both of how much there is to be done to shape the future and also how much there is to be learnt from the past. We have introduced a programme of events on the history of change where people who have been part of huge social movements will talk about what the movement was trying to achieve, what tactics they employed (with what success) and, crucially, what lessons their movement holds for people campaigning for social justice today. The hashtag for all the events is #changehistory and we will share resources from each event here at Global Dashboard.
The first talk, on the lessons of Make Poverty History, was held to coincide with the ten year anniversary of Live 8 and the Gleneagles summit.
The video above (audio only) contains some pretty frank reflections from me and from Care International’s Laurie Lee. At the time I was on the board of Make Poverty History and running the Stop AIDS Campaign while Laurie was the Prime Minister’s foreign policy adviser on development. This is our attempt to give both an insider and outsider account of the main phases of the campaign, including the launch, the debt deal, Live 8 and the march on Edinburgh, Gleneagles and the aftermath.
I won’t pretend it is a short listen, but it does give answers to questions like ‘what is development’s worst ever stunt?’, ‘what is our movement’s biggest failure of the last decade?’, ‘what single issue did MPH do the most to infuence?’ and ‘what’s the right size for a big tent?’.
If you don’t have time for the whole talk, there is a summary of some of the key lessons here.