This blog is mainly about the governance and future of policing and crime services. (Police & Crime Commissioners feature quite a lot.) But there are also posts about the wider justice system. And because I am town councillor and political activist, local & national issues are covered a little, as well.

Friday, June 20, 2014

The importance of O.W.L.S

Yesterday, to much hilarity and raised eyebrows, @LabourPress tweeted  "Everybody should have his own owl"... I didn't see the tweet, but the BBC reports it here and the comedic tweets which greeted this hacked account. I especially liked John O'Farrell's take.

I quite like the idea as I think that we should all have our:
  • Own
  • Way of
  • Living
  • Superbly!
It is a bit corny, I know. But I say it with a deep passion: this is what guides me in all the dimensions of my work (both paid and unpaid). For example, I spent yesterday in a primary school in Banbury co-facilitating five ChildLine workshops for over 100 children. The message we seek to impart is simple: every child has the right to be happy and safe... and we seek to help them to know this and know how they can take action to maintain or achieve it. 

The day before, I sat in a meeting of the Aylesbury Vale Transport Users Group to celebrate the fact that we are one step closer to establishing a fast coach service between High Wycombe and Northampton. The aim of this service is also simple: make it easier for all people to gain skills and find work along that corridor (especially if they don't have access to other forms of transport). Public transport is about public transport!

On Monday night, I contributed to the town council discussion of our internal auditor's report which is all about ensuring the council's financial and risk systems are fit for purpose. If they were not, we could face closure and the subsequent loss to the local public of the work we do for the town on behalf of them. 

(NB: there is karaoke tonight in the Woolpack, Well Street as part of the Buckingham Fringe! The pub is also in the middle of a beer festival - what more could you want!) 

As the town council, our aim is to make the town a place where people can live their lives superbly! This includes organising cracking entertainment to build communities and foster fun. The fringe ends with Jeremy Hardy on Sunday evening... still a few tickets left!)

These are all examples of the brass tacks of my local politics and voluntary work. The focus is always on how can I help create a society and community where everyone has resources (psychological as well as material etc) so that we can all realise our dreams and ambitions. 

And it is the same in my professional work: I spent a good few days a short while back writing a bid for a piece of work to help a police service develop its organisational culture so that it could do even more to support safer local communities. (The tender has since been withdrawn, but that is another story...!) 

In my book, all public services have the responsibility to create the conditions in which all people (not just the wealthy few) enjoy the privilege of being empowered & enabled authors of their own lives. All of my leadership and organisational development work is focused on this aim.

So, we all need our own OWLS! 

What is your contribution towards helping to create a society in which everyone gets their Own Way of Living Superbly?

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