Weekly Update 11.12.18

"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.
-T
he 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. 
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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.
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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.
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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:
https://lacountyanimals.org/way-to-give/disaster-relief/?fbclid=IwAR01eYyMEC8DxHJANru-qR2jMFBRMfmABc8dhKCyBOBSsWT18qnSv0D92pE
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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
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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
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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:
http://www.lacountydhv.com/surgeunit/5-Steps-to-Neighborhood-Preparedness.pdf.

 

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. 

HAPPENING TODAY, SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 11th, 2018

 

Armistice Day Commemoration
Sunday, November 11th, 2018 at the Brattleboro Post Office (204 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm-12:30pm.
All are welcome.
We will be gathering in front of the Post Office where we will be commemorating in silence from 12pm to 12:30pm the end of WWI and honoring the 40 million children, men, and women killed. Churches in Brattleboro have been invited to ring their bells at 12pm. Please join us. 

 

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Apple Pie Social
hosted by the Broad Brook Community Center
Sunday, November 11th, 2018 at the Broad Brook Grange (3940 Guilford Center Road, Guilford, VT, 05301). 3pm-5pm.
Phase 1 renovations are complete! Join us to celebrate the Broad Brook Community Center's grand re-opening with apple pie and ice cream. We will also discuss what will be in store for Phase 2. 
Your Ideas. Your Support. Your Community. Come celebrate!

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HAPPENING THIS WEEK, MONDAY, NOVEMBER 12th, 2018-SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 18th, 2018

 

Racial Justice Organizing Meeting: Every Second Monday
Monday, November 12th, 2018 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). First Floor.
Meeting starts firmly at 6pm. Arrive at 5:45pm for dinner and mingling. The space is fragrance and nut-free, wheelchair-accessible. Bring snacks to share if you're able! Childcare will be provided. 
ASL interpreters available upon request. Text 802-380-0546 or email lisajnewell@gmail.com.
All those who wish to join the struggle for racial justice are encouraged to attend these monthly meetings hosted by the BIPPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) Caucus and Lost River Racial Justice on 2nd Mondays. With a firm start at 6pm, people are invited to arrive at the Root Social Justice Center in Brattleboro, VT at 5:45pm to mingle, snack and settle in. These monthly meetings are a continuation of purpose and membership of the BLM VT-South meetings, now under a new name and leadership structure.
**The goal of this meeting structure is to build a strong multiracial movement for racial justice in our local area. Join us!**
Two important announcements:
-DINNER WILL NOW BE PROVIDED at every RJO meeting on every second Monday of the month! Please arrive at 5:45 to eat and mingle! Big thanks to the Lost River team and Meryl from Just Roots Farm in Greenfield!
-The POC Caucus is changing its name to the BIPOC Caucus (Black, Indigenous, People of Color)
*What will this meeting be like?* This meeting (and each of our monthly meetings) includes time and space for:
- Connecting with others invested in racial justice. 
- Breakout time for the BIPOC Caucus, a space for those who self-identify as people of color to build relationships, leadership capacity, and community organizing power
- Breakout time for Lost River Working Groups, including Fundraising (planning monthly benefit events), Ready Response (showing up for specific racial justice campaigns and actions), and Skill Building.
- Updates and announcements of upcoming events or ongoing projects. 
Mark your calendars for every second Monday of the month! Please share this announcement widely and invite your friends, especially people of color who might want to join the BIPOC Caucus. (Also check out Soul Food Sundays and the I Am VT Too Project at www.therootsjc.org for other POC-only healing and relationship-building spaces!)

 

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Edible Brattleboro’s Celebrate Winter Squash Cooking Class
Monday, November 12th, 2018 at the Brattleboro Food Co-op (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Kitchen (Please use the 7 Canal Street Entrance). 6pm-8pm.
’Tis the season for winter squash. Join Edible Brattleboro chefs for a hands on cooking class celebrating winter squash in three plant-based recipes perfect for holiday gatherings. Recipes include soup, salad and dessert. https://www.facebook.com/EdibleB

 

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Brown Bag Lunch with Democracy Forum: Voter Suppression Past & Present with Nick Biddle & Tim Kipp
Wednesday, November 14th, 2018 at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden (157 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm-1pm. 
Tim Kipp and Nick Biddle will review voter suppression in the past and the present. Beyond formal exclusions of gender, race and wealth applied throughout most of the nation’s history, intimidation, gerrymandering and registration restrictions have been applied. Voter suppression is driven by the permanent commitment of America’s elites to contain and control what the Founders described in 1787 as “the turbulence and follies of democracy.” We will assess voter suppression in the November 6 election to measure how fully it demeaned and diminished America’s putative democracy.
Nick Biddle, PhD, is a retired professor of history and co-owner of Artrageus1 in Brattleboro.
Tim Kipp taught US history, political science, and law for 39 years. He has been a political activist since the 1960s.
Please join in the discussion.

 

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Brown Bag Lunch: Education for Social Transformation
Thursday, November 15th, 2018 at the Robert H Gibson River Garden (157 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm-1pm. For questions about accessibility or disability-related accommodations, please contact Kate Casa (kate.casa@sit,edu; 802-258-3527).
During International Education Week, join SIT International Education Professor Dr. Alla Korzh as she presents a case study examining the education of marginalized children and youth in Ukraine. Drawing on her research in Ukrainian orphanage schools, Dr. Korzh will discuss how the educational inequities faced by socio-economically marginalized children further disadvantage them as they transition into mainstream schools and society. She will highlight the limits and possibilities of the hidden curriculum educators enact in and out of the classroom. This talk will be of interest to educators, parents, and community members who work with disadvantaged children.

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Men, Patriarchy, and Capitalism
hosted by Brattleboro Solidarity
Thursday, November 15th, 2018 from 5:30pm-7pm.
Thursday, November 29th, 2018 from 6pm-7:30pm.
Thursday, December 6th, 2018 from 6pm-7:30pm
Thursday, December 13th, 2018 from 6pm-7:30pm
All meetings will take place at the Brattleboro Food Co-op (2 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) in the Community Room (please use the 7 Canal Street Entrance). Readings will be provided. Refreshments will be served. This is a free event. Please email us at brattleborosolidarity@gmail.com to sign up.
Men, please join us in doing this work! From the European witch hunts of the 1300's to rape culture, male violence has been a troubling theme of modern history. Thanks to the visibility gained by social mobilizations such as the MeToo movement, one would be hard-pressed to argue that we have made much progress in decreasing it. In mainstream discourse, male violence is explained away as the actions of deviant individuals, "bad apples." This explanation avoids questions that implicate the system in which we live. In order to really understand where male violence comes from, we need to situate our understanding in a larger analysis of history.
Grounded in readings from (but not limited to) Angela Davis, bell hooks, Silvia Federici, and Jackson Katz, we will focus on the following questions: 
- Is male violence a men’s issue for men to analyze, discuss and end?
- What are the connections within the current political climate to historical events?
- How do our thoughts and ideology shape our actions and interactions?
- Does capitalism affect how men act in the world?

 

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Protest Vigil at TD Bank
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Friday, November 16th 2018 (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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Cannabis Conversations: Why This Conversation Matters
hosted by Greater Falls Connections
Friday, November 16th, 2018 at Greater Falls Connections (44 School Street, Bellows Falls, VT, 05101). 12pm-1pm.
Please join us for a rich discussion about the new laws related to the legalization of cannabis, and how to engage youth in conversations about the difference between adult use and youth use.
The theme of the meeting is Marijuana: How the Cannabis Conversation Has Changed. 
The legalization of marijuana in Vermont that went into effect in July provides us with the opportunity to discuss the evolving trends related to marijuana. We invite providers and parents to discuss how to engage community members in having cannabis conversations that help us all be prepared to have effective conversations about responsible adult-use and the dangers of youth use marijuana now that it is legal for those 21 and older. 
Our main goal is to focus on what we can all do to prevent youth use and how to protect vulnerable populations given this new landscape. Greater Falls Connections will include information on smoking, edibles, hash oil, vaping, and infused product, and explore opinions on large-scale, commercial marijuana in Vermont.

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Brattleboro Winter Farmers Market
a project of Post Oil Solutions 
Saturday, November 17th, 2018  (and every Saturday thru March 30) in the C.F. Church Building (80 Flat Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 10am-2pm. Accepting credit, debit, and EBT.  Crop Cash turns $10 EBT into $20 every week. Lunch cafe and live music. For info email farmersmarket@postoilsolutions.org, call 802-869-2141, or visit us at www.brattleborowinterfarmersmarket.org.
New Location! Larger and more accessible. Free Parking. All local - farm produce, meats, syrup, fresh baked goods, cheeses, fruits, cider, pickles, preserves, handmade jewelry, pottery, soaps and more. Building community every week.

 

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POC Caucus Retreat
sponsored by Black Lives Matter Brattleboro, Black Lives Matter of Greater Burlington, and The Social Justice Center
Saturday, November 17th, 2018- Sunday, November 18th, 2018 at the Hilltop Montessori School (99 Stafford Farm Hill Road, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). Starting time on Saturday is 9am and the program will conclude Sunday at 6pm.
This year the BIPOCC joins with the People Of Color Caucus (POCC) of Black Lives Matter of Greater Burlington - our sista caucus - with help from the Robin Foundation, to have the first Vermont Statewide POC Caucus Retreat. The retreat will focus on three elements: healing ourselves and amongst each other;  building authentic long lasting relationships where we can show up for one another; and taking action to develop an effective statewide POC Caucus that serves the needs of our communities. All we also ask is that participants intentionally avoid artificial fragrance use during the weekend due to some sensitivities within our community. 
Please keep in mind that with this being the first Statewide Caucus Retreat, we will make our best attempts to accommodate everyone as well as possible. If we are unable to meet a need expressed in this registration, we will be in direct communication with you beforehand to discuss what we can work together to do to make this retreat accessible for you and your family.
Please use this link to register: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSceNMdCKW0y4HsapH5-2NZtsf5NbNWjEudm1_TtljBv2_9ogQ/viewform. 

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UPCOMING EVENTS

 

Brattleboro Annual Community Thanksgiving
Thursday, November 22nd, 2018 at Saint Michael Roman Catholic School (48 Walnut Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm.

Help serve over 500 community dinners by volunteering in the days before and on the day of Thanksgiving. Use the link below to sign up! 
Volunteer Sign Up Sheet
( https://www.volunteersignup.org/8MAAR?fbclid=IwAR15M9YeorxTTMertiZWVsSXpdAKBkPuaVCavdQqEu0MrlijWt5lYT_qXZw
) 
See the FB event here: https://www.facebook.com/Brattleboro-Annual-Community-Thanksgiving-558887691120202/

 

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Opposing the Criminalization of Poverty, Part 2: Take Action
hosted by Brattleboro Solidarity
Thursday, November 27th, 2018 at Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 5:30pm-7:30pm. The night will start with conversation and will be followed by exploring stations where people can find out specific ways to connect. Childcare will be provided.
Come out to learn how you can get involved in the community! In late August some of us in the community held a conversation panel called Opposing the Criminalization of Poverty in Brattleboro. 
Many people who came out asked for more; we, along with others in the community, are hosting a night to learn more about how to plug in. Those that have confirmed with us include: GroundWorks, Turning Point (NARCAN training), info on street medic training to come in early 2019, and the Brattleboro Community Justice Center. 
More organizations will be added to the list as they confirm. 

 

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Panel: Addiction and Recovery in Our Community
sponsored by the Brattleboro Retreat and supported in part by the Vermont Arts Council and National Endowment for the Arts
Thursday, December 13th, 2018 at the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (10 Vernon Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 7pm-9pm. Free. For more information please go to www.brattleboromuseum.org.
 Susan Avery of Nar-Anon, Lt. Adam Petlock of the Brattleboro Police Department, Susan Walker of Turning Point of Windham County, and Kurt White of the Brattleboro Retreat share their perspectives on addiction and recovery resources in our community. Moderated by Geoff Kane, MD, Chief Addiction Services at the Brattleboro Retreat.

 

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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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Education Beyond Windham County, VT
The Sojourner Truth School offers FREE workshops for social change activists on a wide variety of topics, such as Change Happens at the Speed of Trust"  "Unpacking the Man Box," and "Telling Your Public Story." Experienced trainers, Pioneer Valley locations. Pre-registration required. Check out the Fall offerings here: https://truthschool.org/fall2018classes/.

 

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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.  

 

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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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Alternatives to Suicide 
Every Wednesday, 6pm-7:30pm at the Hive Space (24 Flat St, Suite 202, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). Second Floor, up one flight of stairs.
Alternatives to Suicide is a mutual support group open to anyone who has experienced thoughts of suicide. The group is guided by a charter of values provided by the Western Mass Recovery Learning Community. The group is non-clinical and does not link suicide with illness.  Participants are free to talk about and find meaning in their experiences in/on their own terms. 

 

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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.

 

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We look forward to seeing you at a meeting or even this week, Friends. Until then...


Joanna and Leslie 


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