"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
Margaret Mead, an American cultural anthropologist
This week's email is not going to focus on the intimidating pile of "things we cannot directly affect" in our country. Nope. No way. Instead, let's focus on what we CAN do to directly offer positive support to those experiencing trauma, particularly in California. WeCAN has put together a basic list of where and how we can donate to help our neighbors in Cali; so many of them have lost not only their homes and possessions, but also their town infrastructure and income. If you can, please consider giving monetarily to any of the following organizations or one of your own choosing. Thank you!
(Editor's Note: Red Cross and the like aren't included in this list because their information is readily available should you choose to donate to them):
-GoFundMe A roundup of vetted campaigns you can donate to is here: https://www.gofundme.com/cause/californiafires.
-The Humane Society of Ventura County is accepting animals evacuating from the Hill and Woolsey fires. You can donate directly to the organization (https://www.hsvc.org/donate) or purchase items like food and toys through their Amazon Wish List: https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/2LHNG8JV4F1V0.
-Baby2Baby.org is working to get high-need items to children affected by the ongoing Camp, Hill, and Woolsey fires in California through Target. Help them supply diapers, wipes, blankets, and other basic baby essentials to families in need by purchasing from their registry.
-Rotary Clubs of Sonoma Valley, CA are collecting donations of gift cards to Target, Safeway, Raley’s, Walmart, Kohl’s, Rite Aid, and CVS. Gas cards and checks are welcome as well. Please call 415-860-3052 with questions. You can find the addresses to send the cards to here: http://sonomasun.com/2018/11/10/sv-rotary-mounts-effort-to-help-paradise-fire-victims/.
-NAACP of Ventura County in Oxnard, CA (https://www.naacp-venturaco.com) is always accepting donations to their organization. You can find their toolkit, "In the Eye of the Storm: A People's Guide to Transforming Crisis and Advancing Equity in the Disaster Continuum", here: https://www.naacp.org/latest/naacp-releases-toolkit-eye-storm-peoples-guide-transforming-crisis-advancing-equity-disaster-continuum/. The “eye” refers to how some communities, due to pre-existing vulnerabilities, find themselves more in the crosshairs than others. And it also refers to the need for watchful vigilance as we document and take action on inequities. This 190-page manual prepares frontline communities to be first responders in disasters as well as to serve as monitors for equity in disaster response, and to advance an equitable disaster policy platform.
-The North Valley Community Foundation is activating the Northern California Fire Relief Fund to raise money to support the operations of organizations that are sheltering evacuees of the Camp Fire.
-The Butte County Schools Fire Relief Fund is located here: https://www.nvcf.org/fund/butte-county-schools-fire-relief-fund/ and provides a one-stop location where individuals or organizations can provide support directly to schools in Butte County. Donors can either specify a specific district or use (textbooks, clothes, etc.) for the funds or make an open donation.
-Ventura County Community Foundation (https://vccf.org) is raising funds and offering support to both victims of the Thousand Oaks nightclub shooting and those that have had to flee their homes in Ventura County due to wildfires.
-Los Angeles Department of Animal Care and Control helps house and care for animals across LA County:
-Shelter Hope in Sacramento is a non-profit that was taking in pets that other shelters couldn’t. You can see their needs here: http://www.shelterhopepetshop.org/donate.php
-Do you have property in CA that you can offer to someone in need? Airbnb would like to help. Check out their site for more information here.
-Caring Choices is helping put volunteer boots on the ground in CA. You can help them do that by making a financial contribution here: http://www.caring-choices.org/wild-fire-donations.html.
If a financial gift isn't your thing consider that your time can be just as valuable a donation. Here is one way you can work within your own neighborhood in VT to make sure you and your neighbors are disaster ready:
-Acting on a local level, the County of Los Angeles has created a Neighborhood and Community Preparedness Program with some great exercises and resources to help you prepare your neighborhood in case a disaster strikes. Check out the PDF here:
Thank you for your donation in advance. Your generosity is so appreciated.
Thank you, too, to our Veterans. We appreciate your service and sacrifice hold a special place in our hearts this weekend for those that gave all.
“Hearing my school said in the same sentence as Columbine and Sandy Hook will never stop shocking me. I don’t want Marjory Stoneman Douglas to be remembered as “the school that had the shooting”. I want it to be remembered as the school that started a revolution.”
Carly Novell, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL
There are a lot of new events in this week's email so please take a moment to scroll through to the bottom to see all the new entries. Anti gun violence protests and student walkouts are included below as well and the list will be added to as events are made public. To submit an event please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your event name and date in the subject line by Friday night at 10pm (ex: "Enough! National Student Walkout, March 14, 2018"). Thank you!Read more
"When you wake up every day you have two choices: you can either be positive or negative, an optimist or a pessimist. I choose to be an optimist. It's all a matter of perspective and choice."
There are many new events in this week's email, friends. Scroll down to check out new listings that include yoga benefiting our community, tax help courtesy of United Way, and a self defense series at the Cotton Mill in Brattleboro that starts today (Sunday).
Take a look and consider alleviating your cabin fever by attending an event this week...we hope to see you there.
HAPPENING TODAY SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 4th, 2018
Starting Today: Self Defense Group
Sundays February 4th, 2018 - March 28th, 2018 at Sangha Martial Arts (74 Cotton Mill Hill, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 4pm-7pm. Cost: $10 per class ($80 total).
Part class and part group exploration on the topics of Self Defense, Self Reliance, and Self Empowerment.
Join facilitator Matt Hoffman for 8 weeks of progressive physical and mental exercises designed to help participants change the relationship to movement and conflict in practical and accessible ways. No previous experience required. Minimum age requirement is 16 or 14 with parental involvement (permission and waivers).
-when asked about her opponent, Robert G. Marshall (who proudly referred to himself as Virginia's "chief homophobe”) after her state legislature win-
Happy Sunday, WeCAN family. We have a lot going on this week so let's dive right in:
HAPPENING TODAY SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 12th, 2017
Looking at the 2nd Amendment: Politics of Disarmament
Sunday, November 12th, 2017 at St. Michael's Episcopal Church (16 Bradley Ave, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-10am.
This Forum will be led by Meg Mott, Professor of Politics, Marlboro College. The November 12 Forum on the Second Amendment is the first of two related forums; the November 19 Forum on gun regulation will be led by Ann Braden, founder of GunSense Vermont. Important enough to be given almost top billing, the right to bear arms has always played a central role in the American system of justice. Without a robust militia in the states, argued the Framers, the Federal Government could easily lean towards tyranny. While the current Supreme Court has not worried so loudly about tyranny, it has started to read this constitutional right as a fundamental liberty of individuals. What does it mean when a bulwark against tyranny becomes an individual right?
HAPPENING THIS WEEK MONDAY, NOVEMBER 13th, 2017-SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 19th, 2017
Fossil Free Windham County Launch Party
Wednesday, November 15th, 2017 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). First Floor. 6pm-8pm. The Root is fragrance and nut free.
In conjunction with 350.org, join 350 Brattleboro for a Fossil Free campaign launch party. 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 your town to begin the Fossil Free future we need and connect with other activists equally passionate about this work. Pizza and snacks provided. Contact: email@example.com for more information.