08/02/16 St. James’s Piccadilly

St. James’s TowerOn Saturday, Feb. 16th, at 2.30pm St. James’s Church was packed – which was a total miracle. It took me well over a week to put the cornerstones into place and to get the OK from the Dakha office as well as the publisher who was in charge of Dr. Yunus’ diary. So I had three weeks for planning and letting people know.

Fortunately, Strategic Learning Web consultant Dr. Lilly Evans Dipl.Ing. had ‘some spare time’ and offered to help. What a gift, ally and co-thinker she turned out to be!

The last meeting of the Forum for Stable Currencies that I organised from 1998 until 2005 at the House of Lords had been addressed by Aubrey Meyer. That had put me most decisively on the climate track. Since then I had seen his most moving audio-visual presentation at a sustainability conference at the London Stock Exchange.

To translate Dr. Yunus’ experience and messages into the UK context was my task as event producer. Hence I thought of Aubrey as ‘climate change champion’ and journalist and TV commentator Abdallah Homouda as ‘message multiplier’.

As people registered for the event, Lilly spotted some as ‘Yunus Ambassadors‘ and we invited them to ask questions on behalf of the audience:

·Dr. Phyllis SantaMaria who is a director of MicroFinance Without Borders and was UK Director of the UN Year for Microfinance in 2005.

·Peter Ryan, Founder of the MicroLoan Foundation – demonstrating a different approach to charity already before he had heard of Dr. Yunus.

·David Sorrill worked for 26 years in Bangladesh, including a 3-year joint project with Grameen Bank, is now a social company advisor in the UK.

·Herta von Stiegel is executive chairman of an Investment Group and serves on several boards including Opportunity International, a microfinance organization.

·Shafi Chowdhury studied with Dr. Yunus in Chittagong and Dacca. He retired from HM Customs and is active as a voluntary Imam and in community services.

·Farzana Khanom is a year 13 student at the Mulberry School for girls and was a student panellist of BeTheChange in 2007.

Dr. Yunus responded by referring to Bangladesh being a victim of climate change by floods getting worse and worse from year to year…

As he is painting avenues forward towards using ‘social business’ to address ‘social objectives’, he has effectively also suggested a road to ‘Climate Capitalism’: setting up social businesses that address climate change.

Nice how the empty church changed into Dr. Yunus being surrounded not only by ‘Yunus Ambassadors’ who asked questions in representation of the audience, but also by ‘Yunus Hosts’ who tried to make the audience welcome as our challenge was the success of selling out three days before the event…

Shafi Chowdury proudly holds the new book while his daughter Sarah took the photo.

St. James’s InteriorDr. Yunus @ St. James’s

And here are the photos that Lilly took when we visited St. James’s for the first time together:



  1. […] introduced to me by my ‘technology translator’ Bob Bater. That led me to organising the St. James’s event where Brad Meyer also […]

  2. […] the Yunus Event at St. James’s, I begin to talk about ‘climate urgency’ and ‘climate capitalism‘. No […]

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