World Café: A CCC Workshop – December 9th, 2014 A Personal Reflection

By: Johnny Roos, NR 479 Independent Study Credit on CCC Seminar Series on Perspectives on the Poudre


New Belgium Brewing and the Center For Collaborative Conservation held a “World Café” event with Conversketch‘s doing a live mural depicting our insights discussed to bring a variety of stakeholders together to discuss our shared lifeline, the Poudre River. Here in watershed 10190007 (Cache La Poudre Watershed) we may have one the “hardest working” rivers in North America if not the world and it rarely makes it to the ocean because of it. We spent the evening speaking around the question “What is your vision for the Poudre River?”
Though my answer changed a bit from table to table, a healthy habitat for beautiful and diverse wildlife where humans can interact and experience massively developmental rights of passage was my vision. My background is in The Boy Scouts Of America where we had a blast in nature camping, making tools and testing ourselves. I can remember once we were in Minnesota in the Boundary Waters two weeks out in the middle of nowhere, the water was pristine and clean enough to drink. I can remember being able to dive of the end of my canoe deep into the blue abyss, open my mouth and CHUG tons of water! I would get so full of life and energy and hydration that I’ve never been the same since. I’m crying now just feeling some that energy come up. This is a basic human right of passage worth something beyond our comprehension. My vision for the Poudre River is for it to be like that and was what I opened up about while hearing similarly moving story’s.
Will it ever be left alone long enough to become so? Some of the idea’s and individuals at the World Café gave me hope. Here are some of the big takeaway thoughts for myself.

My Take Away Points:
1. We should replace the term “watershed” with “water-catchment”
2. I know of “water rights” yet what are some “water wrongs”?
3. Some humans work in jobs that wipe other species off of the earth.
4. Business as usual is not working.
5. Stop it! (Shopping)
6. If we can deeply listen and agree on one topic a “spillover” effect can happen were we can get together on other, tougher issues. For instance we all love (and need) clean drinking water. Having this in common can act as a basis for discussing some other things worth saving. We could talk about air and soils next when looking to our shared commons like water. The spillover may occur on all levels, from personal to international. The spillover occurs when we can at least agree on one, even small, thing. Like clean water. The spillover acts as a mechanism to center the diverse range of stakeholders onto the same page.

Karina Mullen (ConverSketch) Graphic Recording of the World Cafe Event