Define ‘work’

Over the years, the Alternative Estuary crew have put in many hours on neighbourhood clean ups and other community projects. These are a mix of our projects plus working alongside groups such as Billericay Community Garden, the Vange Hill Community Group and currently, cropsNOTshops. The cropsNOTshops crew have gone from strength to strength this year by virtue of a lot of hard graft.

None of us have ever been paid a penny for any of this work. What we have done and continue to do has tangible social and environmental benefits that make a real difference at the grassroots. When we put in a shift on any grassroots project, we know we’ve worked hard because our limbs ache, we’re tired and frequently dirty as well! Yet because none of what we do makes a profit for a boss, it’s not deemed to be ‘work’, even though our aching limbs are screaming otherwise.

The graphic above poses questions about what work is and what it should be. We need to start having that debate so what we do is recognised for the real value it provides…

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