Together We Celebrate!
Happy New Year, and warmest wishes to you, your organization and your community! At this time we would like to reflect upon and celebrate the past year in our movement, the movements with whom we work in solidarity, and the many, many individual folks surviving and thriving in the face of adversity and oppression.
We know that our communities have experienced and continue to experience much violence and inequity, and that these experiences can generate fear, righteous anger, exhaustion, and many other feelings and responses. We see and honor the creative strategies and awe-inspiring compassion of our comrades and co-conspirators. And we want to celebrate alongside of y'all to remember that together we can accomplish so much.
Please join us in reflection, and if there is work that your member organization is proud to share and would like to see lifted on the GRCA communications platforms, please contact the Communications Committee. And don't forget: Conference registration opens this week! Watch for the announcements here and in your inbox.
2018 saw our movement grow, our work build, and our victories celebrated. Here are some of the things we are most proud of:
The Points of Unity
After years of intentional work and collaboration, the GRCA's membership passed our Points of Unity in 2018, a document meant to give direction to our collaborative work, help clarify our values and commitments, and create space for GRCA membership to hold ourselves accountable. These points are a beautiful reminder of the intersecting points that our organizations hold, the spaces where we share in our work's aims, and the values that create the powerful movement that is the GRCA. The Board of Directors couldn't be more proud and excited to see the ways in which organizations across the world are embodying these points. If you would like to, please share with us how your organization manifests the Points of Unity in the work that you are doing.
The Shifting Power Committee (SPC) is working on translating the Points of Unity into as many languages as possible, and creating resources to make the Points of Unity as accessible and easy to understand as possible. If you are able and would like to support translating the Points of Unity into another language, please contact SPC.
The Caucus Advisory Council
In 2018 the GRCA voted to create the Caucus Advisory Council, a new leadership body within the GRCA that centres historically and currently marginalized communities within the GRCA movement, and builds direct pathways to board leadership. This council will create year-round caucus spaces, plan the annual conference's Movement Day that focuses on building a collaborative, formidable, and sustainable movement across the world, help create educational materials, and work towards dismantling the oppressive structures that exist across the communities that make up the GRCA. Any member of at least one caucus can nominate themselves or be nominated, and the first council will be elected at the 2019 conference.
Racial Equity Check-In
This year, a working group from the People of Colour (POC) Caucus has been meeting regularly to support anti-racism work within the GRCA as a whole, and among individual member organizations. They have created a survey asking current and former volunteers and organizers with member organizations to share their experiences with racial equity within their organizations. This survey is meant as a first step to provide more structures and tools within the GRCA for effectively addressing race-based conflict and supporting anti-racist work and POC within our movement. The Racial Equity Survey will provide valuable guidance to the POC Caucus as they strategize and set priorities to support anti-racism work. If you haven't had a chance to, please fill out the survey before January 31st.
Our movement continues to build and grow as each year passes, and in 2018, we were so happy to welcome 8 new member organizations to the GRCA community: Loud Mozambique (Maputo, Mozambique); San Antonio Girls Rock Camp (San Antonio, Texas, USA); Girls Rock Regina (Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada); Girls Rock London (London, UK); Gainesville Girls Rock Camp (Gainesville, Florida, USA); Chicas Amplificadas (Buenos Aires, Argentina); and Girls Rock Sacramento (Sacramento, California, USA).
Each of these new additions make our movement stronger, grow our community, and widen our reach across the world. We are so excited to be able to have their work join alongside the work of members in the GRCA. For a full list of camps, or a link to digital media from each of the organizations in our movement, visit Find A Camp.
Resolutions, Resources and Readings
As we reflect on the past year, we resolve to be ever more authentic, vulnerable, and intentional in our movement building, and to unlearn actions that cause harm that have been built into the systems within which we are raised, and to seek out education that can provide us with the growth needed to manifest the aims of our organization. To this end, we share these resources for connection, strategy and self-care.
"Things are not getting worse, they are getting uncovered. We must hold each other tight and continue to pull back the veil." - adrienne marie brown, author of Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds. adrienne updates a blog on her website, has a new book,Pleasure Activism, coming out with AK Press this year and is co-producing and hosting a podcast with Autumn Brown called How to Survive the End of the World.
The National Network of Abortion Funds now offers Individual Membership as a a way for folks to connect to grassroots organizations working for abortion access and reproductive freedom across the United States, Mexico and with international organizations working around the world. Membership is sliding scale and new members receive an Everybody Loves Someone Who Had an Abortion t-shirt.
Move to End Violence offers various 21-day challenges as "a resource individuals and organizations to practice self-care for sustainability and impact. From their site: "To achieve lasting social change, we need a movement that is driven by powerful, creative and impactful individuals who can stay in this work for the long-haul. To show up as our most innovative and strategic selves, we need to consciously practice self-care!"
layla f. saad is a writer, podcast host, and racial justice advocate who has offered significant resources to educate ourselves on race and feminism as we move into 2019, including the groundbreaking downloadable Me and White Supremacy Workbook, a "personal anti-racism tool for people holding white privilege to begin to examine and dismantle their complicity in the oppressive system of white supremacy."
We are always growing and learning together, so if you have a resource you would like to share with the GRCA movement, please let us know!