As I wake up to the morning sun shining down bright onto our 3rd floor balcony, I start my morning ritual of drinking tea whilst watching whatever passes by in the greenness of Leaf Street Community Garden space. The satisfaction of this is only granted more firmly in the knowledge that I am now part of the UK’s leading network of radical co-ops whose members are committed to working for positive social change.
I was generously welcomed into Rockdove Rising Housing Co-op around 2 months ago in the cold Autumn of 2016 after 2 years of uncertain living conditions. As a Community Activist and Permaculture Gardener for local refugees and asylum seekers, it can be a tricky ordeal convincing your landlords of the Capitalistic compliance to ensure their properties remain profitable and highly unenjoyable.
That is when I found Rockdove Rising.
As if the planets aligned just right in the cosmic sky, Rockdove Rising scooped me out of the ever-deepening Capitalist pit and thrust me into the full energy of the Radical Routes network. I naively asked my fellow members if it would be possible for me to grow food here in my new home. They laughed and told me we have our own community garden here. I asked is there anywhere I could fix bikes. They once again laughed and told me we have our bike club here. I asked if I can cook the food I grow and share it with my neighbours. You guessed it, we have a People’s Kitchen.
With plans going ahead to purchase new flats and expand the Rockdove Rising Empire, you can’t help but smile at the multi- million pound, gentrified flats being built across the street in droves. I smile in the knowing that all the members of the Hulme Red Bricks Estate in which we are situated, has something so much more.