You are hereSustainers
Prospective landlords have told us that they want three months rent in advance, a security deposit and evidence of income for future rent payments. We expect to pay about $3,000 in rent per month. We therefore need to raise about $85,000 for the first year, for moving costs and making the future space usable. Half needs to be raised up front. Nearly a third will come from resident organization rents. To prep for the future, to keep up the momentum, we are raising $85,000 through major donors and sustainers [see our donor chart]. Your $10/month contributions provide a foundation that we can build upon. We need 100 community members to step up and become sustainers.
e5 needs you: everyday we stay open to deliver on the promise that social movements are equal to the social change challenges of our time. For more than 6 years, we shown that we can build our movements but must now scale up from solid foundation of grassroots energy: clicking on the monthly pledge links (at left) immediately adds you to the foundation. See below for a review of our recent activities:
Update to e5/MGA lists, May 30, 2012:
We just received a notice from a very progressive organization that declared, "We have a hole in our budget!" Over here at encuentro 5 (e5) and Mass. Global Action (MGA) we had to smile: we have a gaping hole and only a sliver of cash.
Of course that hole is filled, year to year, with enormous energy from grassroots activists, volunteers, allies and also in more traditional, if rarely acknowledged, ways, ever-deferred wages, postponed investments in infrastructure and so on.* Unlike Facebook, there won't be an IPO anytime soon for us! But we'll let you know below how you can help out. But first we want to toot our own horn!
We've been working away like crazy. The points that follow are some of the things that we've been doing in recent months; our friends believe that these have really contributed to their movements. These speak to a rare approach to movement building that involves strategic networking and an cross-movement ethic that de-emphasizes organization building in favor of empowering a broad range of initiatives and the sharing of scarce resources. Together these projects add up a to a growing conversation with the broad public and social movements:
1. We are ramping up our Color of Water project that focuses on water insecurity and human rights in Boston. We are building on the recognition last year at the UN General Assembly by Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Water and Sanitation that there are real challenges in the US. In fact, she mentioned Mass. Global Action and our data in her report (see page 12 in linked document) to call attention to disparities in our city. Based on this research, we recently published a short article on this topic in Survivors, Inc.'s newspaper and are working with the organization in two coalitions, the Human Rights City Boston coalition and the Economic Human Rights Coalition. The former grew out of a conference MGA organized back in 2008. Over the next two months, we'll be hosting several community hearings and a teach in on the Human Right to Water... all building toward more engagement with policy makers. Visithttp://www.ColorOfWater.org to keep up with the campaign;
2. Following up on our work with the Majority Agenda Project, we are working on the Budget for All referendum drive. Early last year, we worked with the peace movement to draft the referendum language and then reached out to economic justice activists who further developed it in light of their existing work. MGA also helped in consultations with allies. In March, we did a workshop on the referendum at the United National Antiwar Conference. Two weeks ago, MGA built the campaign website at Budget4AllMass.org and bootstrapped its social media presence on Twitter and Facebook (we also documented this process to be helpful to other initiatives). Then a week ago, we hosted the campaign kickoff event at encuentro 5. We believe that these non-partisan electoral activities engage the broad public and cut across traditional divisions of party and strategy. In doing so, we help the left reach out to that emerging majority that shares its values.
3. We helped organize the Occupy Global Teach-In on Economic Alternatives that involved 7 countries and more than 21 different locations on April 25. We hosted and interviewed Bill McKibben for the event kick off (see the video on Vimeo); later that day, we were interviewed on the subject by #OccupyBoston Radio (streaming directly from their office in encuentro 5). The teach-in has connected us with a global network of progressive economists and increased our technological sophistication at conducting such conversations. More to come!
4. In the same vein, we have finally launched the Du Bois Forum! This is inspired by the Brecht Forum in New York and the Labor Community Strategy Center's School for Organizing in Los Angeles. Our first course was series on social movement theory. We are continuing to collaborate with Corvid College and also with the Howard Zinn Memorial Lecture project from the #Occupy Free School University on future programming. Visit the website to leave feedback, learn about upcoming courses and find news from a variety of left sources.
5. To deepen the #Occupy conversation with the student community, in the Majority Agenda Project, we employed 2 student activists to support existing organizing across Eastern Mass. campuses. This built on the tour we organized last November with Wisconsin Wave Tour (see Facebook for some tour photos). This work will continue through June and resume in the Fall.
6. We continued the Peña series of cultural events including a spectacular dance party, "Dance, Dance the Revolution" at Spontaneous Celebrations (see the photos on Facebook), and more recently, an evening with Manuel Santos (video coming soon!). All of this depending on the musical and organizing skills of Sergio Reyes, Dorotea Manuela, Rafael Medina and Simon Rios. Many of you would have heard Rafael perform at our first annual Five for e5 dinner last December (see the photo album on Facebook here).
7. Above all else, we kept encuentro 5 up and running consistently and almost around the clock, serving as a key platform for #OccupyBoston, in addition to the 20 organizations that call e5 home and the dozens more that use the space for meetings. Fulfilling this promise, with our cash-starved accounts, has really stretched our resources and tested our organizing acumen. We've strengthened our collective that runs the space on a day-to-day basis, improved security in face of unprecedented challenges and costly losses, and streamlined our operations. As a result, and as a visit to our calendar will reveal (scroll through the calendar here), we hosted scores of meetings and educational events.
To all of this, we can add our support for May Day organizing, an educational piece we wrote on "Secure Communities", participation in New York's Left Forum with an original presentation on electoral strategy, continued antiwar movement organizing, participation in the Boston Media Reform Network, the hosting and sponsoring of student speakers from Puerto Rico and Colombia, organizing the Downtown Workers Center, and continuing last year's Transforming Conflict series (later this Summer). Of course, we still operate a web server and design and/or host sites for many progressive projects, including the ACT-MA mailing list (that we help run with TecsChange) and the Global Economic Alternatives Network (organized by Pasqualino Colombaro). We’ve also continued the wheelchair accessibility project and have And still, we're omitting a whole lot!
Looking forward to this Summer, we're organizing events on social movements and electoral politics (first one up is on Saturday, June 30), thinking pieces that will involve folks like note epidemiologist and political philosopher Richard Levins. Summer will also include house parties and barbeques, a run up to a 9/29 Dance Party in Jamaica Plain. The Fall includes celebrating TecsChange's 20th anniversary in mid-October, analyzing the November elections with Vijay Prashad and Noam Chomsky on Thursday, November 8, 2012, celebrating our 6th anniversary on Friday, December 7, with the 2nd annual Five for e5 Dinner (use this form to nominate this year's honorees), and organizing the Digital Media/Grassroots Use of Technology Conference on the weekend of April 19-21, 2013 at Lesley University (with the theme, "Freedom!").
You can add your skills, energies, and ideas to any and all of this by volunteering at the encuentro 5 website. But we also need your financial support.
As the foregoing suggests, your dollars will go a long, long way in building the movements we need to change society! Your investment will have massive multiplier effects to borrow from the economists' toolbox! The best and most manageable way to help is by becoming a monthly donor. This provides us with a stable, predictable flow of funds to keep all this work going. Of course, if you'd like to help in other ways, feel free to contact us right away. Click here to become a monthly donor.
We look forward to hearing from you and also to meeting with you at our upcoming activities.