As those of you on the OLPC grassroots mailing list may have heard, we're having several grassroots events in the New England area during the month of June. Check out the announcement here.

The events in question:

  • Grassroots Unconference (Cambridge, MA, USA - Saturday to Sunday, June 7-8 2008) - In the tradition of Barcamp, we will be holding a grassroots unconference the weekend of June 7, dedicated towards community-organization, and initiatives, events, structures, and best practices. This is not just an OLPC event -- anyone with interest in grassroots organizing is invited to attend - so forward this out to your friends in LUGs, meetups, co-ops, clubs, and the like.
  • Grassroots Bootcamp (Cambridge, MA, USA - Monday to Thursday, June 9-12 2008) - The objective of the bootcamp is to help community members become grassroots advisors, who can serve as resources to others who want to start local initiatives. There will be sessions for hacking (and learning how to hack) on different areas of the XO's software and hardware, organizing local materials and creators, connecting with satellite communities around volunteering, mentoring, learning, and sugar; and more. Several slots are still open, and we invite all community members to apply.
  • Grassroots Jam (New York, NY, USA - Saturday to Sunday, June 14-15 2008 - prep on Friday June 13)

Now. I know the bootcamp prerequisites may look daunting to some people, but I would personally love to have enthusiastic newcomers attend. Oftentimes the people who don't think they can do something end up being the best teachers of that something once they *do* learn how to do it and realize it's not as hard as they though it was.

If you're willing to put in the time and energy to learn some new and difficult things rapidly, I and others would love to work with you to get your application prerequisites ready so you can fully participate. Heck, I'll be learning some of these things myself (I haven't really used pootle before, for example). Even if you can't physically attend the bootcamp but still want to learn these things, THAT'S GREAT! Join us in the learning!

The point of the bootcamp is to get people to be comfortable teaching themselves more and to be comfortable teaching other people more - including teaching them how to teach themselves more. (How's that for many layers of meta?) Wiki usage isn't that hard to learn. Neither is programming. I used to think so on both counts - it isn't, though - really!

So if you're willing to dive into the deep end, we'd love to have you apply. Let me know and we can get you started - post your name in the study groups section on the wiki. If you don't know how to use a wiki but still want to play, leave a comment here and I'll get back to you via email (the email you leave only gets seen by me, once).