While he was alive, my association with SDN kept me in contact with Ned Iceton, the founder of SDN. Ned was a friend and mentor and I always appreciated his input at SDN workshops, which I started going to on an annual basis in 2012, the year I retired from the NSW public service. The workshops were key to my involvement in SDN back then, bringing together a group of like-minded, supportive and trust-worthy people committed to the ideals of personal, social and community development.
Since Ned died in 2015, I'm very pleased to have been involved in SDN activities as the part-time coordinator of the network. In this role I get to meet a lot of SDN people, who range from the quite old, through middle-aged, to a few youthful particpants. Most have retired, some are still working. We are adding to the network as people become interested and agree to join the email list for our newsletters. There are now around 340 on the list. SDN gives me a very real and meaningful interest to pursue in my retirement and I look forward to the workshops - the annual workshop every January and then some regional workshops if there is enough interest from local participants.
When I am not working on the SDN, I spend a lot of time campaigning for a safe climate and clean energy. Skills I have learnt through SDN (and from Ned), are very useful in this activism. Activism is the rent we pay for living on Mother Earth in the twenty-first century. I am also privileged to be able to serve the SDN community as the part-time coordinator. SDN is a unique organisation which offers particpants a network of interest, in addition to networks we belong to in our local area. Through SDN we know more Australians and feel more connected to people like us, so important in this age of social media 'silos' and fake news!