Weekly Update 06.17.19

Weekly Update 06.17.19

"I connect with my culture through my family. I speak Portuguese to my parents so that I can practice. I stay engaged with my extended family through a lively group chat on WhatsApp. That sense of community and family is the heart of Brazilian culture, and staying engaged with my family is what keeps me connected….For me, being an 'American Latina' means identifying with and being influenced by both my American upbringing and my Latin heritage, and I have so much appreciation for how those two cultures have created who I am." 
Camila Mendes (b.1994)
American-Brazilian actress


     This June we celebrate Immigrant Heritage Month, WeCAN Friends. A national observance, Immigrant Heritage Month highlights the diversity of immigrant communities. It also explores all that we have in common. We all know someone with an immigration experience or have an immigrant heritage story of our own. We invite you to amplify immigrant narratives and use #CelebrateImmigrants to spread your stories and support across social media this month. Even when politicians continue to block immigration reform and unjustly hold immigrants and asylum seekers in detention centers, we can validate the unheard voices of those most impacted by current immigration policies by speaking out loudly and often. 
     You can express support of immigrant voices by organizing or attending storytelling and community conversations, host or attend a film screening featuring immigrant casts and crews, and party with your new-to-America neighbors at street festivals and block parties in culturally diverse neighborhoods. You can support immigrant stories locally by attending A Night of Food Justice with Mark Bittman: Benefiting the Pioneer Valley Workers Center and the Food Chain Workers Alliance in Haydenville, MA this week (details are listed below) and not only post about your experience across social media, but also talk about it across the dinner table. 
     Do you have an immigrant heritage story you'd like to share? Email us at admin@wecantogether.net and we'll share your thoughts in next week's Weekly Email Update. 

HAPPENING THIS WEEK, MONDAY, JUNE 17th, 2019-SUNDAY, JUNE 23rd, 2019

Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up 
Monday, June 17th, 2019 at KidsPLAYce (20 Elliot St., Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5:30pm-7:30pm. A vegetarian meal and childcare for ages 10 and under will be provided. RSVP helpful, but not required. Contact Abby Mnookin for more info at abby@350vt.org.
Mother Up!: Families Rise Up for Climate Action 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. Note: This month's meet-up is on the 3rd Monday (instead of the 4th), and there will be no meet-up in July.

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A Night of Food Justice with Mark Bittman: For PVWC and FCWA
benefiting the Pioneer Valley Workers Center and the Food Chain Workers Alliance
Tuesday, June 18th, 2019 at Valley View Farm (16 Walpole Road, Haydenville, MA, 01039). 6pm-10:30pm. Tickets available HERE ($150 for Cocktails with Bittman & Dinner/Music at 5:30pm; $100 for Dinner & Music & talk with Bittman and PVWC at 6pm).
Enjoy a seasonally driven multi-course dinner at the beautiful Valley View Farm. Neftali Durran will lead a team of local chefs, who will prepare a menu with food from Sutter Meats, Crimson and Clover Farm, and Belly of the Beast. You will be serenaded by the infectious Rio Mira band stateside from Columbia and Ecuador with their socially conscious old school Afro-Caribbean marimba music! Monte Belmonte will lead an important conversation with Mark Bittman and local farm and restaurant worker leaders.
The Pioneer Valley Workers Center is an immigrant and worker-led organization that organizes for collective power and racial and economic justice. Our Worker Committees in Northampton and Springfield develop and lead grassroots campaigns for worker and immigrant rights. They are supported by PVWC’s innovative solidarity and interfaith rapid response networks of 2,500+ individuals and participants from over 30 congregations. When PVWC received the 2018 Food Justice Award from the Food Chain Workers Alliance and won a James Beard Leadership Award in May 2019, it was a victory for the thousands of us in the wide circles of PVWC. Thank you for being part of that circle. Together we believe another world is possible!
Mark Bittman is the author of 20 acclaimed books, including the How to Cook Everything series, the award-winning Food Matters, and The New York Times number-one bestseller, VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00. For more than two decades his popular and compelling stories appeared in the Times, where he was ultimately the lead food writer for the Sunday Magazine and became the country’s first food-focused Op-Ed columnist for a major news publication. Bittman has starred in four television series, including Showtime’s Emmy-winning Years of Living Dangerously. He has written for nearly every major newspaper in the United States and many magazines, and has spoken at dozens of universities and conferences; his 2007 TED talk has more than a million views. He was a distinguished fellow at the University of California (Berkeley) and a fellow at the Union of Concerned Scientists; he is a member of the faculty of Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. Throughout his career Bittman has strived for the same goal: to make the food, in all its aspects, understandable.

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Ice on Fire Screen & Discussion
sponsored by Brattleboro Common Sense & 118 Elliot Street
Wednesday, June 21st, 2019 at 118 Elliot Street (118 Elliot St, Brattleboro, VT 05301). 6pm. Free. All are welcome. Documentary film, “Ice On Fire” by Leonardo DiCaprio, precedes an action oriented problem-solving discussion and planning. An eye-opening documentary (1hr 38mins) that focuses on many never-before-seen solutions designed to slow down our escalating environmental crisis. Following the film, the group will co-create climate solutions to be initiated locally / personally as well as in a broader scope. Free! Facilitated by Jeannie Sutherland, PhD, of Brattleboro Common Sense.

 

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Public Forum on the Opioid Epidemic
sponsored by Brattleboro Memorial Hospital and the Brattleboro Fire Department
Thursday, June 20th, 2019 at the Brattleboro Central Fire Station (103 Elliot St, Brattleboro, VT 05301). 6pm-8pm. All are welcome.
Join us for a community conversation about the effects of opioid use disorder in our community.
The Brattleboro Fire Department and Brattleboro Memorial Hospital will join panelists from Turning Point of Windham County, Groundworks Collaborative, Brattleboro Police Department, Project CARE, and the Brattleboro Retreat to discuss solutions to this health crisis that affects us all.

 

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Protest Vigil at TD Bank
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Friday, June 21st, 2019 (and every Friday) at TD Bank Brattleboro (215 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT). In front of the building. 12pm-1pm. Signs will be provided
TD is a major investor in Tar Sands. TD helps to fund the Dakota Access Pipeline. What You Can Do (besides attending the vigils): If you’re a TD depositor, change banks! Founded in 2005, Post Oil Solutions is a 501c3 community organizing project in Southeastern Vermont whose mission is to help empower the people of the Central Connecticut River Valley bioregion in this era of global warming and climate change to develop sustainable, resilient , collaborative, and socially just communities leading to a self- and community-sufficient post petroleum society.

 

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UPCOMING EVENTS

Film: Paris to Pittsburgh
presented by All Souls Church, in cooperation with Vermont Interfaith Power & Light and the Vermont Climate & Health Alliance
Monday, June 24th, 2019 at the All Souls Church (29 South St, Brattleboro, VT 05301). Potluck at 6pm, film at 6:30pm. To view the trailer, visit ParistoPittsburgh.com. Anyone with questions about the event can contact George Carvill at family@carvill.net or 802-490-2052.
All Souls Church will be hosting a showing and discussion of the new National Geographic documentary "Paris to Pittsburgh" on Monday, June 24, at 6:30 p.m. preceded by a potluck at 6 p.m.
The church is presenting the film -- and panel discussion to follow -- in cooperation with Vermont Interfaith Power & Light and the Vermont Climate & Health Alliance. The film shows effects of the climate crisis, as well as the many solutions people across the country are implementing.
The panelists include Wendy Webber, who will speak about a Green New Deal for Vermont; Tom Hughes of Energy Independent Vermont who will speak about pricing carbon; and Dan Quinlan,  who will speak about the Global Warming Solutions Act. VT Interfaith Power & Light is coordinating statewide showings of the new National Geographic climate change documentary.
Paris to Pittsburgh brings to life the impassioned efforts of individuals who are battling the most severe threats of climate change in their own backyards. Set against the national debate over the United States’ energy future — and the Trump administration’s explosive decision to exit the Paris Climate Agreement — the film captures what is at stake for communities around the country and the inspiring ways Americans are responding.

 

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Critical Mass Bike Ride for LGBTQ Pride
hosted by 350 Brattleboro, the Brattleboro Community Bike Clinic, and VBike
Image credit: Hugh D'Andrade
Friday, June 28th, 2019 at the Brattleboro Common (Park Place, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5:30pm-6:30pm. 
We're continuing with our monthly rides with rotating themes on the last Friday of each month. In celebration of Pride month and the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, we're teaming up with Out in the Open - formerly Green Mountain Crossroads to ride for LGBTQ Pride. Dress yourself or decorate your bike in rainbows, unicorns, and all things queer! And later that evening, continue the celebration by heading over to the The Stone Church for a Queer Dance Party, BQDP Pride Night A Fundraiser for Out in the Open.
Kids and families welcome! Critical (and "Kidical") Mass rides have a unique way of energizing folks around bike mobility, transportation solutions, and amplifying our collective ability and power to begin reclaiming our streets and communities. We need this, and we need YOU!
Agenda: 
5:30pm: We'll be starting AND ending at the Brattleboro Common. We'll begin by getting organized, signing in, decorating bikes, and going over our route.
6pm: Begin Critical Mass ride. This will be a high-visibility downtown route!
6:30pm: End ride back at the Brattleboro Common.
Help us spread the word to help make this another successful critical mass ride!

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Birddogging 101
hosted by Rights & Democracy NH and Rights & Democracy VT
Tuesday, July 9th, 2019 at the Brattleboro Food Coop (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Room. 6pm-8pm. Please use the 7 Canal Street entrance. Do not use the Coop main entrance. This is a free event hosted by Rights & Democracy NH and VT. Food and drink will be provided, so come a little early for refreshments and good conversation.
Birddogging 101 is a participatory and interactive training that will give you the skills and confidence to talk to presidential candidates and elected officials about the issues facing our communities. 
What is birddogging? It simply means seeking out elected officials and candidates and pushing them for clear answers on important questions. When we do this we can influence their positions as well as the public's perception. 
We’ve got so many opportunities to get up close and personal with 2020 candidates in New Hampshire this year, and birddogging is a fun and high-profile way to take advantage of that. It also helps advance our campaigns for social, economic and political justice. Step out and use your voice!

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Vermont Mad Pride 2019 in Brattleboro!
hosted by Vermont Psychiatric Survivors, Inc
Saturday, July 13th, 2019. March starting at Pliny Park (corner of Main Street and High Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) and ending at the Brattleboro Common (Park Place, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm-4pm. Free t-shirt for the first 100 participants. If you do not have access to transport to the Mad Pride March in VT on July 13th, or have a car and would like to help get folks to the event, we are coordinating carpooling from across the region. Please visit www.vermontpsychiatricsurvivors.org/carpooling to sign up. We will connect you to your passenger(s) or volunteer drivers via email and facilitate organizing ride times.  We will connect drivers to passenger(s) on a first come, first serve basis.
Vermont Mad Pride is a march and celebration organized by psychiatric survivors, mental health consumers, mad people, and those the world has deemed “mentally ill.”  Mad Pride is about challenging discrimination, advocating for rights, affirming mad identities, remembering and participating in mad history, and having fun.  Our lives and contributions are valuable and need celebration!
Vermont Mad Pride 2019 is organized by Vermont Psychiatric Survivors and the Hive Mutual Support Network as well as a planning committee of community volunteers. Vermont Psychiatric Survivors, Inc. is an independent, statewide mutual support and civil rights advocacy organization run by and for psychiatric survivors. The mission of Vermont Psychiatric Survivors is to provide advocacy and mutual support that seeks to end psychiatric coercion, oppression and discrimination.
This Year’s Mad Pride will take place in Brattleboro, July 13th at 12pm. We will meet up at Pliny Park and march to the Commons for a rally with food, music, and speeches.  Our lives and contributions are valuable and need celebration!
Agenda:
12pm: Meet at Pliny Park
12:15pm-1pm: March to the Commons
1pm-4pm: Rally and speeches

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SUMMER CAMPS

Farm to Ballet Performance Camp for Kids at Retreat Farm
presented by Ballet Vermont and Retreat Farm
Monday, July 15th, 2019-Friday, July 19th, 2019 at Retreat Farm (45 Farmhouse Square, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-3:30*pm. *Paid aftercare option of 3:30pm-4:30pm for an additional $50. Please go to www.balletvermont.org for performance tickets.
Your camper can dance on the big stage with Farm to Ballet! Campers who participate in this camp will perform the choreography they learn at camp as the pre-show to Farm to Ballet's Retreat Farm show. Camp week will include daily ballet class, farm and garden exploration, activities, and craft. Dancers will work on choreography and craft costumes in addition to other activities to prepare for the big Farm to Ballet performance. 

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UPRISE Youth Activism Camp (Ages 13-19)
Sunday, July 28th, 2019-Sunday, August 4th, 2019 in Marshfield, VT. For more information please go here: https://www.uprisecampvt.org.
We're inviting youth ages 13-19 to the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont for one amazing week of teen empowerment, creativity, action, and friendship -- all while strategizing for our collective future. As mentors with a broad spectrum of skills, we are passionate about empowering teens as organizers, change makers, and allies in our rapidly changing world. 
The cost of the camp is $450 for the week, but please feel more than welcome to ask us about scholarships. Bring your hopes and fears for the future, your unique style and skills, your passion and ideas -- but most of all, bring yourself, just as you are -- and join us!
Youth interested in attending Uprise! are asked to go through a short application form process. The application will give us an idea of who’s interested in the camp and help our team make this camp accessible and awesome for everyone. There are financial aid questions at the end of the application. You can find information on the application process here.

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RESOURCE FOR WeCAN: Rapid Response Text Alert System
When WeCAN began, Song & Solidarity set up a Rapid Response Text Alert System for WeCAN Groups. Directions for signing up are on WeCAN's website, here: https://www.wecantogether.net/rapid_response We were reminded of the Rapid Response text alerts system as President Trump moves towards firing Mueller. In the event Mueller is fired, MoveOn is planning a nation-wide simultaneous protest. The trick will be to get the word out fast if/when the time comes. We are grateful to Song and Solidarity for providing this service.

 

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STANDING REGULAR MEETINGS  
Women Veterans Weekly Coffee and Tea Social
Thursday Mornings at Brattleboro Legion Post 5 Inc. (32 Linden Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-10am.
All female veterans are invited to join in the Women Veterans group coffee held at the American Legion.  All women veterans are welcome. You do not need to be a Legion member.

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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.  

 

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Youth 4 Change
Meetings are held on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month from 5:30pm-8pm. 
For more information please contact Youth 4 Change at youth4changeaction@gmail.com.
Agenda:
5:30pm: Drop in homework time and art making
6:00pm: Food
6:30pm: Meeting and Organizing
Youth 4 Change is for local-area youth 12-22 interested in political organizing around local/state/national social justice issues that are important to them. Brattleboro area advocates and educators are holding a space, and assisting youth in building a strong personal tool kit to organize for change. Using a variety of creative methods, we aim to enable youth with tools for resilience, courage and compassion, while fostering their ability to speak up about issues that matter to them, and to take action in the name of love and liberation for all people.  Come explore issues of racial, economic and gender justice through art, movement, first-hand accounts and contemplative practices. Connect with area youth around the issues that matter to you and strengthen your tool kit for action! 

 

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Windham County NAACP Regular Meetings
Monthly community meetings are held on the third Thursday of every month at The Root Center for Social Justice (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the First Floor from 6pm-7pm. Upcoming Meetings: 3/21/19; 4/18/19; 5/16/19. For more information please email info@windhamnaacp.org. All are welcome.
The meetings are open to anyone interested in racial justice. The Mission of the NAACP is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons.

 

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ONGOING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING 
Indigo Radio
Sundays at 12pm on Brattleboro Community Radio 107.7FMTo 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.

 

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     Thank you for your courage to continue fighting for justice. Your unwavering commitment is inspiring. Until next week...


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