What We Are...

The idea of Here We Are was an innovative response to the late Donald Dewar’s (Scotland’s first First Minister) call...

“There must be ways of integrating the economic, the social and the environmental and the desire to live 21st century lives while still maintaining Scotland’s beauty”. After monthly meetings in the pub the committee (local people) got a rough idea what Here We Are was to be.

Here We Are opened in September 2001

HWA Opening September 2001

The Concept

We aim to facilitate interaction between our local community and visitors by encouraging the local community to appreciate itself. Our exhibitions were to hold a mirror up to what happens today, explore how this grew out of the past, and then encourage us to step back and look at the crystal ball of the future. By putting the place we live and work in under the microscope like this we hope to help equip ourselves for the choices in the future. Also we look at the local detail in the context of the bigger picture – the Highlands of Scotland and further a field to Europe and beyond. So from here, at the head of Loch Fyne, we demonstrate wider issues and we see ourselves from the perspective of both time and distance.

Finding Funds

But first we had to find funds to build a centre. To do this we had to have three year cash flows. Difficult to predict what would happen as it was a new idea, and we were n’t exactly sure ourselves and had no track record. We struggled to get the funds, and then struggled with planners and trunk roads. Somehow we managed it and our centre opened in September 2001.

At The Centre

At the centre we show how a rural community, while loyal to its roots, makes its way in the modern world. In an article in Scotland on Sunday Magnus Linklater commented “If we are not aware of our own values we become victims of other peoples’ decisions. We have to bend to their agenda rather than ours, and that means not just a lack of trust in ourselves, but an aversion to risk and an inability to take decisions of our own.”

Social Capital Champions

We were delighted with Assist Social Capital‘s case study as it enhanced the Here We Are concept so well.  We are also very pleased to be appointed as a Social Capital Champion. View the case study for further details

Tara Noble Singh, August 2001