Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust

Introduction to the Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust

The Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust (BRCT) emerged out of momentum produced by community initiatives in the Blueskin Bay area, and emerged to fill the need of a legal body in support of local initiatives. For a while, and since the history of community initiatives in Waitati and the Blueskin Bay area is so long and rich, there was initially reluctance to create another Trust. Why not just work through existing bodies? And so we considered the options. Eventually, with the surge in interest in establishing long-term community responses to the challenges presented by Peak Oil and Climate Change (explored in a visioning workshop in 2006), we realised that local goals wouldn't be able to be clearly represented by existing local Trusts - they covered environmental concerns, education, advocacy... but the transition aspect was missing. The moment to renew the foundations seemed to have arrived.
As a legal body BRCT can sign agreements, apply for funding, negotiate/secure contracts and demonstrate transparent process to enable community respect and give oversight to projects developed or supported by the Trust. BRCT’s mandate is not inherited, it is earned through the delivery of projects and initiatives that benefit the community and ensure ongoing community support. We’re very fortunate to have a diverse and very experienced volunteer community in the Blueskin Bay area, whose long social and environment activist history and experience is regularly infused with rich new blood. In October 2008, we decided to concentrate resources and use that experience, and the Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust was registered as a legal body for sustainable transition initiatives in Blueskin Bay. The BRCT office was established in early 2009 in the Old Blueskin Store and moved to its current location at Waitati School at the start of 2011.
Here is a summary of our Strategic Plan.

 

Activity

The Trust meets monthly ensuring administration and governance functions, and receives the BRCT Office Manager's update on current projects.

 

Vision, Mission, Objectives

1. BRCT Vision

We will facilitate a positive, healthy, secure and resilient future for Blueskin Bay and linked communities and promote sustainable resource use.

 

2. BRCT Mission

The Trust will act to strengthen our communities in the immediate, mid and long-term future, with emphasis on energy, food, water and community resilience.

 

3. BRCT Objectives

  1. To develop and administer projects that provide education, support and resources to maximise locally based sustainable provision of energy, food, and water.
  2. To develop and administer projects that provide education, support and resources to minimise energy use, encourage healthy homes and encourage sustainable households.
  3. To secure and manage funding to achieve the stated goals of the Trust, and to stimulate local sustainable economic activity.
  4. To develop and maintain relationships to achieve the stated goals of the Trust.
  5. To ensure community partnership in any enterprises initiated by the Trust and to aim for the most equitable use of resources.
  6. To foster linkages between organisations with objectives similar to, or complementary to, the Trust’s own Vision and Objectives.
  7. The Trust’s goals and activity will always remain charitable.

 

Governance

The BRCT board combines representation from various communities around Blueskin Bay with excellent individual experience in business management, accounting, local government, academic work and community development projects. The Trustees bring access to various relevant networks.

 

About Us

From 2006 to the present day (mid 2013) a number of community groups and initiatives concerned with transition have been set up: Waitati Edible Gardens (Weggies), the Blueskin Energy Project (BEP), W3 Rideshare, Blueskin Low Oil Commuting, to name just a few. Each initiative is concerned in different ways with making the transition to a more resilient way of doing things by facilitating a positive, healthy, secure and resilient future for Blueskin Bay and North Coast communities while promoting sustainable resource use. All initiatives are actively working to make the transition to a lower energy future and are seeking to lower the carbon footprint of Blueskin Bay communities. We needed a trust that represented this general vision, and enable other initiatives.

By mid 2007 it had become clear that all of these activities with their successes were stretching the Blueskin voluntary sector, and members of these groups began considering appropriate forms of governance, and coordination, to develop efficiencies and build enduring structures. Previously the Blueskin Energy Project had worked with Sustainable Dunedin City (Incorporated Society) as already mentioned, for a funding bid to the Sustainable Management Fund. This experience while very valuable had demanded a large input of voluntary time and energy (and too many car journeys), and in mid-2007, with the momentum generated by local initiatives, a decision was made to use local skills and expertise in the creation of an effective and efficient local governance structure.

The BRCT was set up over four months, through initially preliminary discussions within the Blueskin Energy Project (it was called the 'Waitati' Energy Project then). The trust was eventually registered on the 1st of October, 2008, when it became clear that to build on the impetus generated within the Waitati Energy Project (and other initiatives), a legal body to allow initiatives to move up a level was required.

 

Finding us on the Web

Go to the Companies Office website, and click on 'Search other registers'. The BRCT is a chartitable trust, so you will need to search this register, using our name (or part of it).