Organizers are kind of like sweet potatoes, or sweet peas, or other sweet veggies -- we grow in the grounds we’re rooted in -- conditioned by that context we grew up in, emerging in all different colors and forms. In Maine, we poke out through snow squalls and sleet storms of White rage that, if it wasn’t obvious, do not enable our flourishing. So how did we come to be these rooted, hefty potatoes of social change that you know us as? Well, because we are resilient and brilliant beings! But also, because the organization we are fundraising for today ,the Southern Maine Workers’ Center, gives us the conditions we need to breathe an organizing life. SMWC is the greenhouse developing our skills to grow into the work. Over the next weeks we will be sharing stories of how we came to love this transformative grassroots organization, alongside times we have felt powerful here, with hopes to encourages you to dip into your stimulus checks for us. We don’t have any choreographed routine to perform, but our hearts sing for justice every day, and if that’s not CARE-AOKE we don't know what is.
Syd's SMWC Story: When I found the Workers Center, I felt jaded about nonprofits. So many nonprofits I knew were full of unresolved staff conflict, diversity talking points without real equity, and racist, classist practices that prevented most members from truly holding power. But when I stepped in the door of the 2019 Annual Meeting, Arlo handed me a 1-pager that showed exactly how SMWC made decisions, members’ role in that process, and the principles & values it was based on. None of these things are perfect-- but there are so many little things that to me, make these spaces especially, uniquely, collectively powerful. From culture shares at the beginning of meetings, to dealing with conflicts as they arise, to actually taking the time to study the political economy and work out our internalized oppressions TOGETHER, the relational glue at the heart of the Workers Center makes me feel so darn hopeful! ... If we reach our goal, I will sing a special ode to organizing that may or may not be based on "Soak Up the Sun" by Sheryl Crow.
Your donation of any size will help us meet (and surpass?) our shared goal of receiving 30 grassroots donations!