FSF Ireland

Our intention is to illuminate and create a community of people in Ireland, who have a grá (love) for change and who feel that they want to and can make a difference to the future – no matter how small.

We want to encourage as many individuals, teams, organisations, sports clubs, government departments, schools and communities to connect to the change they want to see in Ireland and to host an event to create the kind of culture and future that deep down we know is possible.

This Festival is not about getting it right or perfect! This is about starting new conversations, taking an inspired step, creating something new, trying something different and being part of a movement of change-makers, soul-shakers and dream creators in Ireland, who support a new vision of positive change across the country. Come on and join in. We are lit!

The Context for Fire Starter Festival

We are experiencing a time of great uncertainty, instability and even unsustainability. We are facing serious challenges in Ireland with regard to housing, homelessness, the health sector, climate, education, suicide and depression, to name just a few. And still we have so much hope and potential inherent in our people and built into our landscape and society across this beautiful land. What if we could give our attention, support and energy to the people who are making positive change in big and small ways? Can we create a strong web of like-minded and like-hearted people to ‘spark and spread the fires’ of conscious change in Ireland?

Sparks and ignition points

1. Firestarter Scotland:

The creation of the first ever Firestarter Festival in Ireland is in parallel with Firestarter Scotland, which is now in its fifth year. A small and committed team from U Lab Ireland (integrating the work of Otto Scharmer and the Presencing Institute, MIT), contacted members of the Scottish government in April 2018 to understand more about the Festival which was creating change across Scotland and which has been endorsed by the first minister and is produced by the Collective Leadership for Scotland team based in the Scottish Government. In November 2018, members of the Scottish government came to Dublin where with the U Lab Ireland team they co-costed a successful launch event for Firestarter Ireland in Croke Park.  In 2019 Firestarter Ireland ran approximately 30 events as part of the Festival.  You can review these here (https://sites.google.com/view/firestarterireland/events)

2. Theory U and U Lab:

U Lab Ireland, a growing community of conscious change makers in Ireland, who have been hosting MIT’s ULab MOOC (Massive Open Online Course with over 120,000 people globally) in Ireland since 2013, want to continue to expand the impact of this profound awareness-based method to enable profound and systemic change across the country.

Our objective is:

  • to nurture people in Irish society who have been ‘bright lights’ in leading positive change in Ireland (in supporting individuals, we also recognise new colleagues with whom we can cooperate in support of creating new cultural, economic and social practices)
  • to share methods that integrate whole system learning and lend to smooth and natural growth
  • to promote Theory U  (https://www.presencing.org/aboutus/theory-u ) as a tool for implementing such conscious, systemic change

Host an event

To host an event, your event must fit with the core principles and ethos of Fire Starter Ireland and the overall Festival.

Core principles and ethos      

Fire Starter Ireland events should:

  • celebrate the various creative and innovative ways in which we are all contributing to the creation of an Ireland that we all want to live in, now and in the future.
  • give participants opportunities to hear about and get involved in areas of work which they may not have been exposed to before.
  • be hosted in creative, different and engaging ways, making best use of your talents, skills and interests, both in and out of work.
  • make use of different spaces, venues and locations, both indoor and outdoor.

 Events hosted during the festival must be:

  • free to attend – there is no charge for participation in Fire Starter Ireland events.
  • accessible and open – events must be open to participants, no matter their organisation or background.
  • self-organised – events must be organised by those hosting them and their partners. Unfortunately the Fire Starter Ireland team has limited capacity and cannot support, resource or fund events.

Events must not be:

  • Viewed as a commercial opportunity.
  • A platform to push one ideology or political viewpoint.

Our role – Fire Starter Ireland

Your role – event host

  • You, and your event partners will resource all facilitation and administration required to run your event, which includes all health and safety, ethical and privacy requirements.
  • Local organising teams are responsible for curating events in their own area, and may want to consider how they support individual event hosts.

Hosting an Event:

Future opportunities for developing the festival

We encourage the use of creative approaches. Traditionally, the arts have led in this field, with a range of festival events providing fertile ground for stimulation. We are keen to explore in what ways we might bring some more of these approaches into Fire Starter Ireland.