This Sunday, the SUNDAY ASSEMBLY was included on the 2014 New Radicals list, compiled by Nesta, the UK’s innovation foundation, and The Observer. From over 1000 nominations the Assembly was one of 50 people or projects that are being celebrated for helping to change Britain for the better. New Radicals is a search lead by Nesta and The Observer to the find the top people, projects and organisations offering innovative ways to tacke social issues and challenges.
We fit right in because The Sunday Assembly is radical in our methods, in our rapid growth and in our impact. Repurposing the church-model to make it radically inclusive to all, has helped us create joyful communities across the world, powered by karaoke, kindness and cake. We burst onto the scene last year almost as a curiosity, and it is refreshing to show that, even though we are powered by pop songs and laughter, the social value of our work is being recognised.
This year the Sunday Assembly has gathered qualitative data from Assembly attendees discovering that it is helping people with anxiety and depression, it is alleviating social isolation and increasing social capital. This is on top of positively contributing to people’s wellbeing by giving them a more positive outlook, new friends, belonging and meaning. We are in the process of analysing a quantitative survey of 350 people, to tell us more about the impact we are having.
Geoff Mulgan, CEO of Nesta, commented: “New Radicals celebrates the often unsung heroes who are blazing new trails that could benefit us all, whether in schools or care homes, science or the arts. It’s designed to complement the very familiar lists that celebrate the rich, the powerful and the famous, and we hope that once again the list can inspire others to turn their enthusiasm and ideas into practical change for the better.”
John Mulholland, Editor of The Observer, said: “It’s a thrilling list – here are people or groups of people who are organising, collaborating and active in a way that helps transform lives and communities. It’s an antidote to apathy and cynicism – this is about activism. The ways in which these people act has the effect of materially changing the lives of Britons for the better. I think the message is clear – if at all possible, do something. It’s almost always better than doing nothing.”
Thanks very much guys. We really are bowled over by this, and we’ll work hard to keep up the work that we started last year!