Sorry they're late...
Sunday Feb 20th 2005: The fantastic volunteer meeting
Here’s a summary of what went down:
Present: many volunteers and most committee members
Dan facilitated and I, Georgina minute-took
Intro: Committee members introduced themselves and what they did. Gareth took it a step further and gave a little explanation of how forest money works. Mikey sent a recording of his voice…I have no words…
1.Kitchen: Marie explained that we need to make a profit and the kitchen prices are worked out accordingly. She wants to expand the menu keeping it healthy and cost effective. Maybe get rid of the sandwiches and bring in more curry-style stuff? She’ll be putting a suggestion box for food ideas in the café.
Dan also explained how the kitchen is not the essence of the forest but merely a fundraiser and our aim is to keep it healthy and cheap. We do have a classA
restaurant licence but we would need a ventilation hood which is one of those
Volunteers are valued and need to be happy & comfortable behind the counter; relax, have fun and don’t take any shit from nobody. You have the right to close up if you judge it fit (i.e. there’s noone there, it’s late and you want to go home).
Noise levels have to go down at 11 and off by 12 due to neighbour issues. To
test whether noise is ok you can go to the back garden-make sure you don’t get locked out!
If shit gets out of hand the number for the police is in the front of the
volunteer book(in its labelled drawer); call us before you call them. The phone
numbers of all committee members are on the cupboard door in the kitchen.
Georgina and Joanna live across the street and will be glad to pop down and
help with anything. And there are bigger taller scarier committee members to
opt for as well.
But basically you’re the boss. Improvise.
Tim suggested that service needs to be faster cause an hours wait for a bloody
cup of tea might, justifiably, piss people away
Action: He will provide a tea-urn to speed-up the drink-making process and we will put our soup-heater back into action.
We need someone to organize events.
2.Alcohol ban: Reasons for detox, i.e.drunken wank and nastiness were laid out in explanation… Some enquired as to whether this was the real issue and if it would solve anything; but already the atmosphere is more chilled and yes it’s a bummer for nice people not to be able to have a bottle of wine in our space but if it’s driving the piss-heads away then so be it.
Signs will be made so that people know what’s going on.
Oh and spirits never have been and never are allowed in Forest.
3. Building stuff explained: We rent the café space and some downstairs( studio and office) off the Settlemet who are an umbrella organization for charities.
We picked out the building together, they own it, we rent some of the spaces.
We pay 17 grand/year.
Alas we do not own upstairs and have to rent it at 10£/hour. Dan is currently in charge of managing the building and thus the person to talk to about using
Action: He will make this known with a sign.
The Future: The Settlement want 50-60 grand; we give about 17… Also the building doesn’t have an entertainment license. Fire escape from upstairs into garden must be built.. We ARE planning to use the building for the festival because it’s fucking awesome; all we need is 15 grand… Last year we took something like 30 grand with 7-8 grand profit. There are some plans for forest festival use of upstairs mainly involving theatres…Either way, a full-time upstairs manager would also be required.
4.Studio: courtesy of Robin and many volunteers. Is cool. We got 5 grand grant (not loan) from bank of Scotland going mainly towards a drum-kit a pa and some amps. It will be free for community groups to use. Unfortunately we will have to charge the rest of us 5£/h which apparently is cheap(in other places is
5. We all know rampant Jane, our front of house. She needs paintbrush-wielding hands to paint the main café space. The colour is yet undecided.
6.Storytelling workshop John is willing to make big fuck-off puppets for the
space that will be used for his storytelling if the forest will fund him. It
was pointed out that puppets could be made for the G8 summit madness.
Action: John will write up a little proposal with the costs but it sounds good
7. Eric asked for £50 to get a competing forest chess club up and going. It is
possible to make your own clocks-amaaazing!
8. Vollie Natalia has 3 months here to do a short film. She’s chosen to do a
documentary about forest. Lovely.
9.Gallery: Aaron is the coordinator so he’s the one to e-mail if anyone wants to do a show
10. Womens Day on the 8th. Jane, Rosie and Camille are putting together a book of womens stuff (art, poetry, whatever). There will be stuff going on @ forest all day and anyone with ideas for events, workshops or anything to contribute to the book should e-mail the girls( if all else fails go through the speaks)
11. Ania was made the new library person. Wonderful.
Film lending was suggested but no definite action taken
Also, volunteers, you should know that you can get involved elsewhere than the kitchen. There are cleaning shifts to be done(which we all hate but someone has to do) and you can always get involved in one of the subcommittees or start your own.
In the words of Holdstock: “There was no more business”