Member Update October 2019.

Every October we review all our achievements from the past year and package them up into a neat little printed report. Weaving thousands of stories together to create the narrative of community empowerment and change that CERES strives for, is usually a favourite task.

But this year at Annual Report time it was hard to escape the news of the climate crisis. And in the face of that, does any of this matter? Is it enough? Who cares about orange trees at CERES while NSW farms are deathly dry in spring, birds are dying and the Amazon is burning? Shouldn’t we all power down our energy-hungry computers, stop with the emailing and walk into the city to glue ourselves to the glass doors of concrete towers until the people in power do something? Shouldn’t we be yelling louder in the climate marches and pushing for system change and sharing the science with all those who refuse to acknowledge the emergency?

Stop. Go back. There was an orange tree. Covered in blossoms. Actually it was that sweet, unbelievably delicious fragrance emanating from the small but laden tree that offered salvation. The sweet scent was filled with beauty and love and silent longing for appreciation.

The power of that small white blossom to stop a person in their tracks is the kind of power we need more of. Intangible, hard to describe or define, complex, quiet.

So in reviewing the year I look for those stories. What kind of heirloom tomatoes did Farmer Meg propagate this year? What experiences did Year 5 kids take home after spending the afternoon with ochre-painted faces, learning Wurundjeri stories? How many more creatures made CERES their home through the work of Gardener Bel and her teams of volunteers?

These stories are the antidote to what ails us. Yes, we need urgent, radical system change. And we need to fall in love with the orange blossom.

E-News Editor & Narrative Director

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