Weekly Update 01.22.18

“There’s a gap somehow between empathy and activism. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke of soul force, something that emanates from a deep truth inside of us and empowers us to act. Once you identify your inner genius you will be able to take action, whether it’s writing a check or digging a well.”
Sue Monk Kidd

     With images from Saturday's gatherings and marches in our news feeds and on our minds, the Admins at WeCAN wanted to acknowledge all the hard work and effort you, fellow WeCANners, have put forward this past year. We saw you last Spring when we gathered to meet and greet after the Inauguration dust had settled. We saw you this past Thursday evening at the WeCAN Cafe sharing your raw stories, your hearts, and your activist minds. We saw you march, gather, and vigil again and again: for Charlottesville, for Women's Empowerment, for the release of migrant workers, to mourn those we have lost, and to bring hope to generations to come. We saw you in the background, too, supporting activists by watching their children, cooking and sharing meals, opening your homes to traveling strangers, and carpooling across state lines. 
     The long and short of it is this: positive change wouldn't happen without you. The meetings and events listed below exist because of you and your activism. Keep it up, friends and neighbors. You are the change we seek and you're doing great. 

HAPPENING TODAY SUNDAY, JANUARY 21st, 2018

 

Local Love Brigade at the Brattleboro Museum
Sunday, January 21st, 2018 at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center (10 Vernon St. Brattleboro, VT 05301). 11:30am-1:30pm.
Gather at the museum to make love postcards together. Supplies and refreshments will be provided - and there will be a good view of the midday Amtrak for all kids and other train lovers. All are welcome. 

______

HAPPENING THIS WEEK MONDAY, JANUARY 22nd, 2018-SUNDAY, JANUARY 28th, 2018

 

Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up
Monday, January 22nd, 2018 at KidsPLAYce (20 Elliot St., Brattleboro). 5:30pm-7:30pm. A simple vegetarian meal and childcare for ages 8 and under will be provided. RSVP helpful, but not required. Contact Abby Mnookin for more info at abby@350vt.org 
Mother Up!: Parents Exchange for Change is a project of 350Vermont that brings together families to talk about the tough realities of climate change and to participate in the transition to a healthier and safer world. (Please note we're meeting on the 4th Monday as usual, but this is not the last Monday of the month.) Continuing with this year's theme of "ACTION", we'll hear highlights from January 20th's March for our Future and plan for our upcoming Lobby Day, happening at the State House on Thursday, February 15th. 

______

Public Hearing on Access to Healthcare
hosted by the Senate Health & Welfare Committee
Tuesday, January 23rd, 2018 at the Vermont State House (115 State St, Montpelier, VT 05633). 5:30pm-8:00pm. For more information or to sign up to go & connect with a carpool, contact windham@workerscenter.org or 802-257-4436.
The Vermont Workers’ Center’s Healthcare Is A Human Right Campaign is organizing preparation sessions and carpools to this public hearing. 
Many of us are struggling to meet our healthcare needs or worried about losing what access we have. This is an opportunity to share your experience and to call for a system that treats healthcare as a human right. It’s important that the legislators hear a full range of experiences including those of people with disabilities, people with chronic health conditions, people who can’t afford treatment or have gone into medical debt, people kept in the ER for mental health issues, and people who are doing without needed care due to no insurance or underinsurance. We also encourage healthcare workers to testify about what they see and about issues that impact their ability to provide care, such as unsafe staffing levels. Whatever YOUR story, it is important!
We can take immediate steps to address this crisis: Finish the work of implementing Act 48, a universal publicly financed healthcare for Vermont; protect and fully fund services for people with disabilities; and ensure safe staffing levels and debt-free education for nurses and healthcare workers in our medical system. But to transform our system the legislators need to hear from lots of us!

______

Climate Change Café presents
a project of Post Oil Solutions 
Ecopsychology: The Human Psyche with the Earth in Mind (& Body)
Tuesday, January 23rd, 2018 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT 05301). 6pm-8pm. 
Free, light refreshments available. For more information please contact bereal@vermontel.net.
Regardless of who we think we are at this moment, in essence we're all ancestors of peoples and cultures that once had a profound kinship with the more-than-human world.  However, right now we are living in a time of unspeakable ecological disconnection and disruption. Perhaps now more than ever, it's time to more deeply search for who we are in relationship to the Earth and all its inhabitants.  
With our guide, integrative psychotherapist Dave Cohen, we will explore a broad overview of the fundamental ingredients that make up the vital work of ecopsychology. This is an approach that deeply considers us – our minds, bodies, and senses – and our felt relationships to the ecological and social worlds we inhabit, as well as the ways in which the industrial worldview is redefining who we are and perhaps even hacking into our status as human beings.
Dave Cohen is an integrative psychotherapist in Brattleboro, VT (www.davecohenccounseling.com), specializing in approaches in mind/body modalities and ecopsychology.

______

Pack the Statehouse! Raise The Wage Public Hearing
Thursday, January 25th, 2018 at the VT Statehouse (115 State St, Montpelier, VT 05633). Room TBD.
5:30pm-7:00pm. 
Public Hearing for legislators to hear from Vermonters around a bill to raise the minimum wage to $15 (S. 40). Over 80,000 VT workers are counting on us to turn out and make our legislators hear from us loud and clear, it's time for livable wages for all! Join us for a critical moment in the Raise the Wage campaign - either come to share your story or stand with us in solidarity.  Sign-up here to attend the hearing and/or share your story, and share the Facebook event with your friends!

______

Citizen Emergency Preparedness Workshop in Bellows Falls
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Thursday, January 25th, 2018 at the Rockingham Free Public Library (65 Westminister Street, Bellows Falls, VT). 6:30pm-8pm. 
The workshop is free, and light refreshments will be available. For further information, contact Tim Stevenson, bereal@vermontel.net or 802.869.2141.
Post Oil Solutions will host Rich Cogliano, the Regional Emergency Management Program Coordinator of Vermont Emergency Management (VEM) for an important workshop on how citizens and communities can best prepare themselves for the kinds of catastrophic weather and other climate-related events we are increasingly experiencing, as well as other severe crises where emergency services are rendered unavailable, and people are basically on their own to take care of themselves and their neighbors.
One of the important lessons from this year’s hurricane and wildfire season is that the good people of Houston, Puerto Rico, and California would have been better served had they made preparations for such events before they occurred, and not waited until these horrors struck them and they were quickly overwhelmed.
The workshop will offer very practical steps we can all take as individuals, families and communities to making emergency and evacuation plans that can then be acted upon promptly in a time of emergency. VEM will also provide all attendees with a booklet on emergency preparedness.

______

Talk by Nancy McLain, Author of Democracy in Chains
Thursday, January 25th, 2018 at Smith College (100 Elm Street, Northampton, MA) in the Campus Center. Carroll Room, Second Floor. 7pm. Democracy in Chains is at Everyone's Books if you want to do some advance reading.
Don't miss Nancy McLain's talk at Smith. The Nation magazine named her book, Democracy in Chains, their Most Important Book of 2017 and with good reason: the roots of the political nightmare we're in -- specifically the Koch brothers' role as patient, evil puppeteers -- is important to understand as we move into this critical election cycle in 2018. The story she's painstakingly uncovered is astounding and in the best tradition of activist-scholarship. The program starts at 7 p.m. in the Carroll Room, second floor of the Campus Center, right on Elm Street, so parking is easy. Form a carpool and join us!

______

Film Screening: “White People”
part of the Looking Inward at White Power and Privilege film series
sponsored by All Souls Church Social and Environmental Action Committee
Sunday, January 28th, 2018 at All Souls Church (29 South Street, West Brattleboro, VT). 12pm. Viewers are invited to bring a bag lunch if they wish. All shows in the series are free and open to the public. After the film viewers will be invited to share their thoughts and reactions.
All Souls Church in West Brattleboro will continue its film series "Looking Inward at White Power and Privilege" with a screening of the MTV documentary “White People” on Sunday, January 28.
The second film in the series, this ground-breaking 2015 American documentary is directed, produced, and stars Pulitzer Prize winner Jose Antonio Vargas and explores white privilege in the United States.
As the film gets underway it points out some facts about race that might seem obvious —  until the viewer realizes that for many Americans the insights are not obvious at all. White people are so accustomed to their privilege that often they never see it. 
What does it mean to be white? MTV’s documentary on race aims to answer that question from the viewpoint of young white people living in America today. The film follows Vargas as he travels across the country to get this complicated conversation started. "White People" asks what is fair when it comes to affirmative action, if colorblindness is a good thing, what privilege really means, and what it’s like to become the “white minority” in your neighborhood.
As Spencer Kornhaber wrote for The Atlantic, “The best parts of the [film] try to debunk common, defiant responses white people have when told that they’re privileged.”
This year the church's committee will explore several questions, such as, "What is white power? What is white privilege? Do people — black and white — assume this power and privilege exist, just as the air we breathe exists? Does it surround us — and do we expect no less? We hope to see you there. 

______

Southeast VT Early Childhood Council Legislative Forum
Monday, January 29th, 2018 at The Winston Prouty Campus (20 Austine Drive, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in Holton Hall. 4th Floor. 8:30am-10am. Coffee, tea, and light breakfast will be provided. RSVP here.  For more information, contact Vicky@letsgrowkids.org.
Building Bright Futures released the How Are Vermont's Young Children & Families report on January 10th.
The Report covers recent successes and challenges facing Vermont's young children and families in five different topic areas:
Family & Social Relationships; Safety; Health & Development; Early Care & Learning; and Family Economic Well-Being.
The morning will include:
• Review of the HAVYCF data, focusing on southeastern Vermont and BBF recommendations regarding how we can move forward to best serve young children and families
• Presentation by Kay Curtis, Coordinator of The Welcoming Place--a childcare program for parents who are receiving medication and care for opioid addiction
• Chloe Leary, Executive Director of the Winston Prouty Center and BBF State Advisory Council member, regarding childcare as a critical piece of economic development
• Local legislators sharing up-to-date information on key early childhood issues this legislative session
Join us for a legislative and community breakfast to connect around the opportunities and needs within our early childhood system. All community members are encouraged and invited to join us. Please share this invitation.

let's grow kids logo

_____

A Meditative Vigil of Lovingkindness
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Monday, January 29th, 2018 at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden (157 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301), part of the Brown Bag Event. 12pm-1pm. 
With a banner that reads “May All Beings Be Free Of Pain And Suffering, May All Beings Know Peace And Happiness. Please Join Us” Post Oil Solutions is continuing to host  silent vigils of lovingkindness for the peaceful, socially just society we are all seeking.
At a time when basic values are being assaulted and ignored, it is essential that we both express and simply be our inherent heart values. Though silent, the Vigil of Lovingkindness is intended to give voice to these values—selfless love, personal integrity, service to others, moral courage, and a basic commitment to the sacredness of life--that are the foundation of a wholesome society, and to speak up for the compassionate alternative that they represent. Please join us. All are welcome to join for a few minutes or for the entire hour. People may stand, sit or kneel, as they see fit. There are chairs, but please bring a cushion, mat, or whatever you are comfortable with. 

______

"Fossil Fuel Free Fast: The Climate Resistance" Live-Streamed Event Watch Party
sponsored by 350 Brattleboro
Wednesday, January 31st, 2018 at the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (10 Vernon Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 7:30pm-9:30pm. 
This event is free and open to the public. Live-streaming begins at 8 pm. RSVP and get last-minute details at https://actionnetwork.org/events/350brattleboro-fossil-fuel-free-fast-livestream-event. Questions? Contact brattleboro@350vt.org
This live-streamed watch party will feature movement leaders like Senator Bernie Sanders, 350.org co-founder Bill McKibben, Reverend Yearwood, Varshini Prakash of the Sunrise Movement, and many more. These speakers will lay out their plans to resist the current administration’s ongoing attacks on our climate, win back power in the 2018 and 2020 elections, and secure the lasting change we need through local action.
Meet others in our community who want to organize to build local power and take climate action. Working together, we will end the use of fossil fuels and transition our world to 100% renewable energy for all! Find out what you can do in Windham County to begin to build the Fossil Fuel Free future we need -- and connect with other activists equally passionate about this work.

______

Non Violent Direct Action Training Opportunity: Call for NVDA Training Participants (REGISTRATION DEADLINE: FEBURARY 3rd, 2018)
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions and 99th Monkee Affinity Group
Saturday, February 10th, 2017 at the Brattleboro Food Co-op (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Room on the 2nd Floor. 9:30am-5pm.
TRAINERS: Cate Woolner & Carol Lewis
The workshop is free. Bagels, muffins, scones, croissants, fruit, coffee & tea will be available throughout the day. For lunch, bring your own, eat in the Co-op Café, or elsewhere in town.
Though not required, a donation of $5-$20 would be most appreciated as our way of thanking our volunteer trainers.
There are only 25 places and some have already been taken; it is advisable to register early.
For information and to register contact Tim 802.869.2141 or email him at bereal@vermontel.net
Participating in this training does not mean you plan to risk arrest while involved in a non-violent direct action. It is important for all of us in the environmental, social justice, racial & gender equality, peace, and democracy movements to be well-versed in non-violence. In addition to risking arrest, we need to consider all the roles necessary to make our efforts successful, including being a support person, a legal, police or media liaison. This workshop is highly recommended for those who want to be prepared to act in support of the Poor Peoples Campaign, to resist the Keystone Pipeline across indigenous land in Nebraska, or to defend our country against a Trump-initiated coup by firing special counsel Robert Mueller.
Workshop Goals Include:
•To understand and become inspired by the spirit and history of non-violent direct action
•To prepare for participation in non-violent action that may be necessary as time goes on
•To deepen connections and build stronger community among activists in the greater Brattleboro area
•To consider joining an existing affinity group, or creating a new one.
The workshop is free. Bagels, muffins, scones, croissants, fruit, coffee & tea will be available throughout the day. For lunch, bring your own, eat in the Co-op Café, or elsewhere in town. Though not required, a donation of $5-$20 would be most appreciated as our way of thanking our volunteer trainers. There are only 25 places, and some have already been taken. So it is advisable to register early. For information and to register contact Tim
802.869.2141 or bereal@vermontel.net

______

STANDING REGULAR MEETINGS

 

Lost River Racial Justice, Black Lives Matter-South, and People Of Color Caucus Regular Meeting
Reoccurring racial justice organizing meetings every 2nd Monday at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio of the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the First Floor. 6pm-8pm. Childcare provided. Fragrance & nut free space.  

_____

Youth4Change Regular Meeting 
The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). First Floor. 
Youth4Change (Y4C), a program of The Root Social Justice Center, builds the leadership skills of youth ages 12-21, especially those from/in historically disenfranchised communities who want to use education, art, and action to address issues of racial, class, gender, queer, immigrant and indigenous justice.

______

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
Childcare as a Radical Act: Sign up to Provide Childcare!
The Family Solidarity Action Network is moving forward with their next big effort to support families in local activism: a collective of folks to provide childcare for local activist meetings or events. If you or someone you know would be able and willing to offer childcare (as a volunteer, or paid) for meetings and events please fill out this spreadsheet:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1YGVI8wECe4ZDdghtAG147j7ktwgB_J5ZoWUPkwGrOhM/edit#gid=0
We are looking for people young and old with varying degrees of experience.  Having a large pool of people to call on will make it much easier for organizers to arrange childcare for meetings, allowing for more voices of families with young children to participate in local activism!  We will then be making this list available to other local organizations so we can be sure that childcare doesn't have to be a barrier to participation for anyone. 

_____

Inclusion Center is Looking for People Who are Interested in Helping our Organization Grow and Mature in Various Directions
Inclusion Center is an amazing program that works with all people who have disabilities or medical issues, and everyone else who has an interest in being with us. 
The possibilities for what Inclusion Center could be in the future are endless: A drop in center within another program! Have our own space with our doors always open. Offer classes. Offer services as well as being a drop in center! And those are just a few of our ideas! 
However, in order for us to grow, we need a few more people who can either come to our board meetings (the second friday of each month at 2:00), or come to a work group each month (generally Friday mornings). 
At Inclusion Center we all matter. Everyone helps make decisions. It doesn't matter if you want to join the board or just drop in as often as you can. Either way, your ideas and input matter just as much as everyone else's.
Please contact us (inclusioncenter2013@gmail.com or
802-387-5285) to discuss how we could work together. 

____

ONGOING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING 
Indigo Radio
Sundays at 12pm on Brattleboro Community Radio 107.7FM
To stream live: Visit www.wvew.org 
Indigo Radio, deepening understanding and making connections! IndigoRadio is a group of area educators seeking to learn through engaging with others in our community and throughout the world. We will be talking about educational and social issues both globally and locally and connecting them to our lives and Brattleboro community. Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/indigoradiowvew/. For archive recordings of past shows: https://soundcloud.com/user-654648353

______

Democracy, Eventually 
WVEW 107.7FM, Brattleboro Community Radio Station
You can listen to recorded and archived episodes here: https://soundcloud.com/democracy-eventually and you can find us on Facebook here https://www.facebook.com/democracyeventually/ and on Twitter here @Democrazeee.
We are Democracy, Eventually a radio show covering local, state, and underreported national news stories from a progressive analysis. We air live on WVEW 107.7FM LP Brattleboro Community Radio Station.