A church-backed movement is developing new models of income and independence with groups of people from some of Scotland’s most disadvantaged communities.
Income is one of the main factors of poverty, and also arguably one of the hardest to influence. Wevolution has literally made it their mission to do just that. Working in some of the most economically challenged communities in Scotland, they have pioneered an approach which is about encouraging people to take control of their own lives and circumstances.
In 2010, the Church of Scotland agreed to support a working group for women to explore the self-reliance movement in India. After visiting Mumbai and Gujarat during 2011, a group of twelve women in Provanmill started Scotland’s very first Self-Reliant Group (SRG), each saving £1 a week and running a very well attended and successful lunch club for their local community. 18 months later they established themselves as a community interest company, got a small loan and started running their own laundry business called Fluff ‘n’ Fold.
In October 2013, the Scottish Government awarded funding to recruit a small team to support the growing number of SRGs in Scotland. Since then, Wevolution has worked with hundreds of individuals, supporting them in starting their own Self-Reliant Groups and generating their own income.
In the video we hear from Fiona McMillan and Adele Buttons - some of the entrepreneurs who are part of the movement - and also the founder of Wevolution, Noel Matthias.
When we asked Adele what was different about Wevolution her reply was beautifully clear:
'The label self-reliance – that is everything to me. Being able to encourage people to stand on their own two feet, why would you wait for someone to hand you your future on a plate?'
If you want to know more about this innovative and inspiring work check out Wevolution’s website.