A new type of green house that uses cardboard and sea water, grows healthy food in the desert…and it’s affordable.
A new type of green house that uses cardboard and sea water, grows healthy food in the desert…and it’s affordable.
A few practical steps to create a safer, happier, more productive community (both by community building and workforce building):
Reading Bill Nye’s book Everything All At Once, I’m inspired to share three of my ideas that would immediately change the world for the better using simple, doable processes that would solve multiple problems simultaneously. These three ideas would partner business, government, nonprofits, and community members to work together for good:
1. A job matching game focused on employee passions and transferable skills that matches the best employee to your business with the least amount of work and the most mutual satisfaction. Businesses that offer living wages, benefits, and respect their employees will be included…and job seekers of all abilities, education, and background can play.
2. A resources matching game that helps solve the multiple challenges of homelessness, poverty, addiction, and personal hopelessness. This game would be open for ALL to play so that there is no stigma.
3. A free sharing model that has worked for 12+ years that combines bringing new customers into businesses, community building, keeping items out of landfills, and free fun for all players.
I want access to partner with those who have the connections and resources to bring these ideas into reality (actually the third idea I’ve already created into reality at https://swappositive.wordpress.com/about , but need a bigger team to expand it).
These three ideas are practical and doable. I want to join a successful team to help create and implement these ideas in the spirit of the Bill Nye lifestyle philosophy. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I’ve been playing with my Jobs Dating App idea. Here’s a conversation I had a few days ago on facebook when a friend mentioned they are begrudgingly looking for a new job. I changed the names (other than my own) to protect privacy, and did light editing for clarification :
Carl: Updating my resume. Plz kill me.
Lynn: I did update mine recently and it suuuuuucked
Carl: Few things make me feel like more of a loser / impostor / slacker / etc.
Jeanie: I feel your pain. Doing that myself. Oh, and the job search itself. If I get so bored just reading a job description, how can I possibly imagine actually working there! Egads.
Carl: Right? Or finding the perfect job that you know you’ll love but realizing you’re not qualified.
Jeanie: Right? Because somehow when it’s time to hire, all of a sudden HR and hiring managers seems to think that if you haven’t done that exact thing already, you can’t possibly be acceptable. You know, because once we start looking for a job, it’s impossible for us to ever learn a new thing ever again.
Jeanie: I once got a rejection letter to my resume submission that actually said, “…you’re not a perfect fit.” Perfect. Who the hell would ever be a PERFECT fit? Except for the person who previously had the job but even that person would not be PERFECT because if they were, they’d still be in the job. Ugh.
Carl: No such thing as perfect. Sorry you’re job hunting, too.
Barb Hughes: I want to be on a team to design a job dating app. Where you fill out all the things you think are FUN, and then the algorithms find jobs that have similar things to what you like. It would make job-hunting entertaining, and bring up all kinds of new jobs that we’d never have thought to apply for. It would also be a great game for grade school, middle, and high school kids to get an idea of what current jobs out there they would actually be compatible for, so they can take classes that feed that interest…I mean they’ve already listed things they like to do (or want to try doing) so what better way to choose a career path?
Jeanie: Great idea! Except that I don’t think there’s a big market for someone who excels at reading books, binge watching Madame Secretary, snorkeling and frosting cupcakes. 😉
Barb Hughes: Jeanie HA! That would be where the questions would be broken down and crafted in such a way that they would apply to job interests. For example, binge watching could be a transferable skill of “able to sit for long periods of time staring at a screen totally focused on watching something I find interesting.” Other questions would ferret out what those interests are.
Carl: ^^^Going through surveillance footage like those poor guys on legal dramas. 🙂
Barb Hughes: Frosting Cupcakes might be listed under several categories (depending on which actually brings you joy) such as ‘creating masterpieces with food, clay, or art’ or ‘repetitive hand motions that create a product such as knitting, frosting cupcakes, or painting’.
Barb Hughes: And then if a business has similar activities, such as assembling widgets, bread making, painting clay figurines, etc. you might be paired up with possible jobs in anything from manufacturing to pharmacy work to watch repair. See how much fun this would be? Jobs you never would have thought of would be offered as possibilities of transferable skills to the things you ACTUALLY enjoy doing.
Barb Hughes: Carl, concerning surveillance footage – my daughter has a friend who would get in trouble as a kid for sneaking around listening in on people…and now he works as head security at a department store and gets to watch people on security cameras and then confront them. He loves his job.
Carl: I’ve made peace with the reality that not all jobs must be work one loves. That whole “do what you love and the money will follow” is nonsense. Someone has to do unpleasant jobs and that’s okay.
Jeanie: Carl I actually agree. I’m totally fine working at a job I’m not “passionate” about, as long as it’s fairly decent and the pay is sufficient. There was this great article I came across a few years ago about how the idea of “following your passion” is overrated. I’ll see if I can find it–you may like it.
Jeanie: I think that whole passion following thing has created a lot of disappointed young people. But maybe Barb can crack the code…
Barb Hughes: I would also like to add in – for the business offering the job – for them to fill out what benefits they offer. Free clothes (radio stations have lots of promotional t-shirts and stuff that they give to staff -radio outfitted me for awhile there; and I’ve heard people at Nordstrom et all have nice employee discounts on clothes). Free Food (when I worked at a restaurant you could have one free meal each shift you worked; at New Seasons Market they offer employees 20% off everything in the store AND they give you free food through the blue slip program). Businesses would also fill out what kinds of health care they offered, if they give out free bus passes/pay for a car or your gas money etc. So not only would the prospective employee fill out the game to match, but the employer would fill out what that actual job does and what perks the company offers, so you get a *real* match. I’d also like google maps included in the game so you can see which jobs are closest to you via walk/bike/public transportation/driving/work from home so you can choose a short commute if you want (saving the city in gridlock and pollution). I’ve been working on gamified questions, but of course this would take a lot more input and research as well (which I enjoy doing).
Jeanie: Barb these are all great ideas! Maybe you should develop the app!
Barb Hughes: Jeanie I’m looking into how to do that!
Barb Hughes: I think gamifying it in a way that hasn’t been done before would at least give options we don’t currently have. I mean, it seems like all jobs ask for is what degree/how much college you have, and if you’ve done *that* particular job before. And how many jobs are not even around anymore (book binder? radio disc jockey? all the things people over 40 went to college for?) It really doesn’t make sense to NOT have companies look for transferable skills, and what actions/opportunities brings an employee individual joy…and then for those same companies to offer to pay for any upgraded training an employee might need. Not only are there community colleges and tech/trade schools available for company paid training, there are also tons of free online classes, as well as free classes through public libraries, so an employer may not even have to PAY to train the employee…just give them a website and paid time to learn. And since the employee has already listed their interests, they will be thrilled that you are investing in them so they can invest in the company.
I’m interested in being on a team to develop this web app. Please contact me at urbanfarmer pdx1 (at) yahoo . com and include what organization, skill, or financial backing you would contribute to make this job dating web app a reality.
By Barb Hughes
People are scared because the future is unknown and moving so quickly. They feel economically left behind. We could start to turn this paradigm on it’s head and take out the fear, take out the us/them thinking, by applying the following ideas and principles.
Let’s replace fear with practical fun and hard work. I’d like to be on a working team to bring America together using simple, practical solutions to equip all Americans – city/country, colored/white, male/female, ruling class/working class, etc. – with successful tools/skills. I have some templates to help get this started. Contact me if interested.
Barb Hughes, Better Ideas Now blog founder
Tesla is coming out with a solar roof that is compatible with their updated battery that can then charge their car. The cost of the roof is supposedly comparable to the cost of a roof plus your current electricity bill. Telsa has recently purchased Solar City as it’s distribution channel. I look forward to see how this technology unfolds.
Great camping idea: pop-up tents that are easy to use, lightweight, have solar panels to charge phones and provide LED lighting at night.
Bike-Stroller: convenient for parent and child as a bike riding to and from, and as a stroller when you get to your location. Great exercise, and so practical!
Don’t throw away your disposable silverware – eat it! This innovative ‘silverware’ is a food item that is baked, and comes in various flavors to go with whatever you are eating – sweet, savory, etc. Disposable environmentally destructive plastic was ‘innovative’ in it’s day, but we’ve learned now that it’s harmful to the planet and to our health. With todays technology and understanding we can do better! (Plus the edible cutlery is nutritious and delicious according to those who’ve tried it.) What a great new business model.
The above story is from The Better India a news source featuring innovation for positive and practical change. I’ve just discovered it and bookmarked it. Good stuff!
Finland leads the way with another innovative idea: seniors and young adults enjoy affordable housing – and an enriching community experience.
The news is full of articles trying to figure out a way to save America: how to bring back the middle class, create jobs, help stop the disparity between the few rich at the top and the majority falling (or fearful of falling) toward poverty, and what to do about increasing homelessness and food insecurity. American society seems gripped in fear, as many young people wrestle with college debt and little or no living wage work prospects. Middle managers in their 40’s/50’s/60’s have been downsized/laid off, and haunt monthly job fairs featuring door-t0-door commission sales work (to try to reach those who don’t want to open their doors to strangers and/or don’t have money/need to purchase their products anyway). An undergirding of fear is sweeping our nation just under the surface for those of wealth (and those hanging on by their fingernails to their wealth), a daily reality for many more.
The conversation is here. People are awake and aware that this growing soup of problems are encroaching on us as a society, not just ‘the fringe others’. This involves all of us. Some of us who have not yet lost our job/home/health respond with self-protective denial. Some of us in frustration and fear blame the ‘other’. Some of us become clinically depressed and use pain medication/drink/drugs to hide.
I believe there is a practical way to turn this poverty of economy and spirit around. Here’s my idea outline for a Four Step Plan To Economic Recovery:
These four steps would in practical ways help turn the economy around with innovative business and industry leading the way by creating living wage jobs and incorporating training and benefits back into the business model. Add to that affordable housing, fanning innovation, creating community building opportunities, rebuilding a middle class and giving tangible tools to bring disenfranchised into the middle class, and the result would be uplifting all of American society for a better future.
This light source powered by gravity produces clean, free energy for lighting. No sun or batteries needed. No breathing kerosene fumes, no danger of damage by fires, only safe, clean, off-grid energy.
The Midomo Water Purifier transports and purifies water at the same time.
Utah is tackling the homeless problem. Their plan is already saving taxpayer money AND is improving the economy, plus they are on track to eliminate homelessness by 2015.
Origami algorithms are being used to create medical implants and space telescopes. I wonder if origami algorithms might be used to create the build-a-building, using plastic, wood, and mesh sheets that can be folded differently to create different shaped useful small buildings? Learn more about this amazing new technology that combines art, science, and history in this Ted Talk.
Indoor forts for kids (and adults) just got a whole lot easier – and more fun. Made from recycled cardboard, these lay flat for storage, but can be folded into lego-like blocks for easy stacking. But the genius is the ‘mortar’ that holds the blocks together, and the easy-on roofs. Take a look – and be a part of the kick starter program if you like what you see.
This is a possible step towards an outdoor building system for reusable small buildings as well.
Ikea is developing a prototype of refugee shelter that is easy to put together, is insulated, has a solar light so people can cook/sew/do homework when it gets dark, and other simple yet practical features.
Ikea is getting feedback from refugees to improve upon the concept before they roll out the final design. They also plan to include a system of health care, education, and more so refugee families can not only get stabilized physically, but get all members of a family back on their feet in body/mind/spirit as quickly and respectfully as possible.
The Good News Network was started by Geri Weis-Corbley in 1997, and I’ve enjoyed the little encouraging stories sent to my email inbox for many years. Recently the Good News Network went through a transformation, and is now a free and easily navigated news service. The insight and direction of Geri’s work and attitude are cutting edge cultural creative. Check out more information about what she’s doing, why, the history, how you can get involved by sending in your own stories, and more here. Now you can start and end your day with GOOD news from the Good News Network – rated #1 on Google.
Wanna start a free pop-up store for the homeless? Check out this video, which gives how-to information including downloadable posters!
Introducing The Street Store. The world’s first rent-free, premises-free, free ‘pop-up clothing store’ for the homeless, found entirely on the street and curated by you.
Download open-source files and host your own Street Store on www.thestreetstore.org
Follow on Twitter @TheStreetStore and on Facebook.com/thestreetstoreorg
Be blown away by youth that demonstrate a passion for restoring the health of the environment! The April 26th Sharing Ideas event, features the Roosevelt High School Science Club, a group of students determined to counteract pollution in Portland, Oregon. These local youth are experimenting with planters that recycle polluted air into clean air and testing of air quality surrounding Roosevelt High School. They have been invited to Washington, D.C. later this year to present their findings.
Sharing Ideas events raise awareness of local grassroots efforts throughout Portland Oregon that strengthen community. Project presenters share the inspiration that launched their idea, how it moved into action, where they are today, and their hope for the future.
Everyone is invited. RSVP suggested online or by phone at 503.546.7499. Refreshments will be provided. Childcare (9 and under), transportation, and interpretation are provided upon request, with 48 hours advanced notice.
When: Saturday, April 26th, from 11 AM to 1 PM
Where: Central Library, 801 SW 10th Ave, Portland, OR 97205.
Who: You! Bring your friends and family to this free event and discover pathways to new possibilities!