Scotland’s Common Good Fund is a whole pile of publicly owned assets that can be found in communities all over Scotland, worth tens of millions of pounds, consisting of buildings, land, and movable assets such as gifts to the city, or town, such as art work, artefacts and jewellery, and even full libraries.
The fund has laws to protect it. It is the responsibility of the various councils around the country to steward common good assets for the benefit of its citizens. Over the years though through lack of awareness and mismanagement, many of these assets have disappeared, been lost or stolen.
The Common Good Awareness project was created to help spread awareness in the project to help to identify, document, record and register Scotland’s 500 year old fund and put it into community use.
Within the Common Good Fund, we have the scope for supporting investment, both culturally and economically. The Common Good Fund, like the Scottish Enlightenment embodies the very principals on which our culture is built. It is therefor relevant to any cultural vision being developed that these principals of our history play an important part
So how can we use these cultural assets.
The use of the assets could be operated within a kind of Cooperative mutual organisation that will create the right kind of shared governance and accountability in an open structure that allows and encourages a community wide knowledge base and participation in all aspects of its management and development.
Under this kind of scheme recognition should be made of the existing skills that already reside within the community before the importation of remote service suppliers. Where these skills do not exist in the community, training should be provided as an important part of building an ethical solution and cultural legacy. Meaning: Where these skills have to be brought in, this gap in needs and knowledge should also be used as a future training opportunity.
So if education is to be part of the cultural remit. How do we use our common good assets within a morally respective and ethical learning environment. Where we mentor each other irrespective of age, gender, race or ability.
We believe we should not be selling off public owned buildings as development opportunities. These buildings and assets should remain an integral part of our community infrastructure. They are much more useful to us as tangible assets than money.
For instance in:
● Creating community education centres for the 21st century in neglected buildings that are part of the assets of the cities Common Good Fund.
● Using the common good as a civic tool of both finding community consensus and finding community workers for these projects.
● Documenting the process of participation as an educational document and template for others to use.
● Public consultation. What we want our resource centre to be.
● Making connections with the community, spreading common good
awareness, finding support and partners.
● Planning procedures, how we involve and train local folk throughout the whole process of the project.
● Sustainability and long term vision for project.
● Energising a local skills base.
● Ideas for training local people.
● Project as economic an ecological viable implementation exercise
We believe a vision for the use of our Common Good Fund, including buildings should be developed through an education policy that will encourage community members participation in every aspect of the process of planning and developing these spaces. And looking at how our collective commons can help to answer some of the issues that create strife in our communities as well as enjoyment and encouraging creativity