Weekly Email Update 4.25.22

“Every leaf that grows will tell you: what you sow will bear fruit, so if you have any sense my friend, don’t plant anything but Love.”
-Rumi
Jalāl al-Dīn Muḥammad Rūmī was a 13th-century Persian poet, Hanafi faqih, Islamic scholar, Maturidi theologian, and Sufi mystic originally from Greater Khorasan in Greater Iran
  

     There are several new events in this week's Weekly Email Update--surely something for everyone, WeCAN readers. In celebration of this bounty of information we invite you to bring a friend to an event during the coming week. With Spring emerging  all around us, it's the perfect time to plant some seeds of knowledge and watch them grow in the coming Summer months. We invite you to learn, grow, and develop your activism interests at an event or meeting this week. We'll see you there!
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Lean Left VT Action of the Week

Warm weather is here! Let’s go for some walks and connect with voters. In-person canvassing is happening now in Concord and Manchester and will be starting up on April 30th, 2022 in Keene, New Hampshire.
You can sign-up now for Concord and Manchester. If you’re interested in knowing who else is going and when contact Rebecca at [email protected].
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HAPPENING THIS WEEK:
MONDAY, APRIL 25th, 2022-SUNDAY, MAY 1st, 2022

Isaac Evans-Frantz for U.S. Senate Official Campaign Kickoff
Tuesday, April 26th, 2022 at the U.S. Post Office at 204 Main Street in Brattleboro, Vermont. 12pm.
This event will have ASL interpretation.
For more information about Isaac's campaign, please visit isaacforvermont.com.
Progressive activist Isaac Evans-Frantz of Brattleboro, Vermont will formally kick off his campaign for the open U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Senator Patrick Leahy on Tuesday, April 26th at 12 pm, at the U.S. Post Office at 204 Main Street in Brattleboro, Vermont.
Featuring the Milkhouse Heaters, Americana music duo of Rockingham, come for speakers, music and snacks, and learn about Isaac's vision for a Congress where everyone has a seat at the table and our politics is based in community care and kindness. Vermonters deserve someone who knows our struggles and will lead with a strong voice Washington.

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Weekly Email Update 4.18.22

“Despite the fear and anxiety of the moment, we're not going to back down from doing the things that we know matter. We are going to stand by the work that we do. We're going to stand by the celebration and joy of being in community with peers. We're gonna celebrate our identities and that is just as important.”
Dana Kaplan
Executive Director of Outright Vermont, in response to Fern Feather’s murder in Vermont this past week.* 

    
     As you may have heard this week, Vermont lost a beautiful soul in Fern Feather to a horrific crime. Fern, who had recently come out on social media as transgender, was possibly targeted because of their identity; the Human Rights Campaign lists Fern as the eleventh trans or nonconforming person in the country to be killed in 2022. We would like to invite you to take a moment of silence and reflection as you read this to acknowledge Fern and, indeed, all the other transgender and nonconforming persons who have been killed in Vermont and in our nation as of late. 

Toussaint St. Negritude, Fern's friend, wrote a poem in their honor and we'd like to share it with you here, via a publishing on VPR^.

THROUGH

For however many times
Fern was stabbed

I ache
and bleed from every wound.

So many of us do.

Only Fern's
smile holds me through.

© 2022 by Toussaint St. Negritude

     If you (or someone you know or love) identify as LGBTQIA+ or nonconforming and do not feel safe, the Pride Center in Burlington runs a SafeSpace Anti-Violence Program which includes a support line that people can contact by phone (802-863-0003) or online chat. If you are not ok and need to chat with someone to process your emotions, please call or text the Pathways VT Support line at (833) VT-TALKS / (833) 888-2557. You can also text “VT” to 741741 to get in touch with the 24 hour Crisis Text Line. Other NAMI resources can be found here. Please share them widely! If you cannot find what you are looking for, please email us at [email protected] and we will be so very happy to assist you. 


Fern, 2014, at Tree Frog Farm (photo: Asam Ahmad)'

*https://vtdigger.org/2022/04/15/whether-friends-or-strangers-thousands-mourn-transgender-woman-killed-in-vermont/
^https://www.vpr.org/vpr-news/2022-04-14/friends-mourn-fern-feather-lover-of-plants-and-birds-after-killing-in-morristown
' https://kopkind.org/2022/04/16/fern-feather/?fbclid=IwAR3BrgCLP6WPe3HVsYDSMmWV4ghDm_Nl2IolNRk5WfJQAaUgDgA_n5IlQMc

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Lean Left Mid-Term Action of the Week

The New Hampshire state Senate just passed SB 418. This bill makes extra-hard for people to register and vote on the same day. The so-called “affidavit ballot” would require voters to mail in a copy of their missing domicile documentation within 10 days of an election for their vote to count in the final tally. This threatens to suppress the vote of thousands of Granite Staters -- including students and overseas military voters -- and undermines ballot privacy.
Join the NH Dems and other progressive organizations in making calls to urge voters to contact their Representatives! SIGN UP HERE!

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Weekly Email Update 4.11.22

“I believe that every American should have stable, dignified housing; health care; education - that the most very basic needs to sustain modern life should be guaranteed in a moral society.”
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez b.1989
Also known by her initials AOC, Ocasio-Cortez is an American politician and activist. She has served as the U.S. representative for New York's 14th congressional district since 2019, as a member of the Democratic Party.

    
     April is fair-housing month in Vermont*, WeCAN friends, and we wanted to share some info on what our Brave Little State is doing to acknowledge how far we've come since 1968 and the passage of the Fair Housing Act...and how much further we still need to go to ensure ALL in Vermont (and, indeed, the USA) have livable housing, free from discrimination.
     "Fair Housing" is the right to equal opportunity in housing choice and the right to rent, buy, finance, and live in a home free from discrimination or harassment. The federal Fair Housing Act prohibits discrimination concerning the sale, rental, and financing of housing based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex, and as amended, disability and family status. This also covers harassment, including sexual harassment. Vermont has additional protections based on age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, receipt of public assistance, being a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking, and denial of development permitting based on the income of prospective residents. For more information about Fair Housing in Vermont, visit www.cvoeo.org/FHP. To learn more about Thriving Communities: Building a Vibrant Inclusive Vermont, a statewide collaboration to raise awareness about the economic and social benefits of affordable, inclusive housing, visit www.thrivingcommunitiesvt.org.
     To access the Fair Housing Events Calendar for the month of April, please go to https://fairhousingmonthvt.org/event-calendar. Have an urge to create art in response to our housing crisis? Enter this Art Contest (https://fairhousingmonthvt.org/asw-x-cvoeo-art-contest) for a chance to win a cash prize and have your art included in the state-wide Opening! 


     

* https://fairhousingmonthvt.org

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Grant  Opportunity for Vermont Non-Profits

Ben & Jerry’s Foundation 2022 Vermont Equity & Justice Grant Funding Announcement
Process:
Proposals may be submitted through our on-line application process by May 2nd for review in July.
Learn More & Apply!
If you have any questions, please contact Becca Golden,
[email protected].
The Ben & Jerry’s Foundation is very pleased to announce the opening of our 2022 Vermont Equity & Justice Grant (formerly the Vermont Economic Justice Grant) program with an allocation of $300,000. Beginning this summer, the Ben & Jerry’s Foundation will offer competitive grants of up to $20,000 to Vermont-based, non-profit organizations working to address economic, social and environmental disparities in the state. Grant decisions are made by a team of Ben & Jerry’s employees from each of our three Vermont office and manufacturing sites.
We will seek out innovative programs that are taking a holistic approach in their work to create fundamental change for low-income and BIPOC Vermonters. Grant applicants should demonstrate that they approach their work through the lens of social justice and equity. This program is not intended to fund projects that solely provide direct services to individuals.

Areas of interest include:

  • equity in education
  • access to safe and affordable housing
  • criminal justice reform
  • access to jobs with livable wages
  • workers rights
  • access to affordable health care 
  • access to healthy and affordable food

We will prioritize programs that work to involve and give voice to constituents most impacted by the problem they seek to address.

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Weekly Email Update 4.4.22

"I think if everyone embraced their humanity, the whole world would blossom."
- Marwa
A new Brattleboro resident from Afghanistan, writing in an issue of the Brattleboro Reformer this past week.
    
     When we asked you to submit your upcoming Spring events, WeCAN activists, you did not disappoint. Thank you! With ten new events added this week alone, we can confidently say that there is something enticing to everyone in this email, no matter your Covid comfortability, schedule, or justice interests. So what are you waiting for? Grab your calendar, a refreshing beverage, and a comfy seat. Let's get scheduling...
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Volunteer Opportunity

Putney Foodshelf Needs Volunteers
We are looking for volunteers to fill out the following teams as soon as this week:
Open Hours (Fridays 1-4 p.m. and Saturdays 8:30-11 a.m.)
VT Foodbank: pick up, unload, and restock (Fridays 7:45am-8:30 a.m.)
If you, or anyone you know, might be interested in volunteering, we'd love to hear about it!
Start by filling out this form and we'll be in touch. Volunteering can be a fun and gratifying way to connect to the community. 
If you are already a Foodshelf volunteer and would like to sign up for one of these shifts, please let us know asap by signing up through our regular signup portal or emailing [email protected] Thank you! 
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HAPPENING THIS WEEK:
MONDAY, APRIL 4th, 2022-SUNDAY, APRIL 10th, 2022

Vermont Food Bank’s Veggie Van Go Upcoming Schedule
The First and Third Mondays of Every Month in the parking lot across the street from the main entrance to Brattleboro Union High School (131 Fairground Road, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 10am-11am. 
Veggie Van Go is a program through the Vermont Foodbank that gives out free produce and local food for people to take home.
April 4th, 2022
April 18th, 2022
May 2nd, 2022
May 16th, 2022

Important information:

  • Drive through model- please stay in your vehicles
  • If you are walking there: see a Vermont Foodbank associate but please make sure to stay 6 feet back.
  • There are no income requirements, registration or paperwork to participate
  • You do not need to be present to get food: you may ask someone to pick up on your family's behalf.

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