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Developing a shared analysis of the ecological crisis and its impacts on urban communities of color.
National movement building for a just transition out of the climate crisis.
As Permaculture Design represents a big picture, systems-thinking approach to problem solving, MG and the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center are working with a methodology we’ve labeled Liberation Permaculture—the notion that oppressed people can draw upon ancient methods of living in balance with their environment to build resilience and regain social, political and economic independence.
“Permaculture, being a design system for creating regenerative human settlements, is a key instrument for communities in developing small-scale solutions,” says Carla Pérez, co-director of theMovement Generation Justice & Ecology Project. According to Pérez, the current “long chain” economic model of supply and demand and its often toxic side effects, such as environmentally hazardous resource extraction and cheap labor, most deeply affect marginalized communities.
Permaculture for the People
The Movement Generation Justice & Ecology Project and the Occidental Arts & Ecology Center first unveiled Liberation Permaculture in April of 2010 through a 2-week intensive called “Permaculture for the People.” The course was offered to targeted participants—groups of organizing staff and member-leaders from community-based social justice organizations such as POWER (San Francisco) and Urban Tilth(Richmond).
The course’s Permaculture Design projects centered on the physical sites occupied by the participating organizations, with an understanding that participants would incorporate the principles of Permaculture into their social justice work after the course was over.
“The course was unique in that it was divided between a rural and an urban setting,” says Pérez. “After a week at OAEC, the group made its way back to the city, where participants spent time doing planning and sector mapping at their design sites.”
MG and OAEC encouraged participants to stay in touch after the course, especially about how to implement resilience-based strategies in their work in an ongoing way. This opened the door for several collaborations in the past 3 years, such as Urban Tilth’s “all hands on deck” work parties to turn an abandoned school’s baseball field into a community farm.
Liberation Permaculture is also manifested through MG’s Earth Skills Training Program, which Pérez coordinates. “The trainings are a space for people to reconnect to some of the basic resources we once knew how to use to provide for our own needs,” says Pérez.
These free, equal-access sessions are held in spaces run by organizations looking for help with implementing Permaculture Designs. The People’s Grocery in West Oakland hosted a rainwater harvesting training, for instance, and the catchment system set up during the training now irrigates their garden. Other training sessions have focused on urban beekeeping, soil building, composting, greywater installation, and plant medicine.
“Earth Skills training is not just skills training,” Pérez explains. “Every skill is deeply contextualized and politicized. One beehive is not going to save the world and restore biological diversity. What we’re building is people’s awareness of and ability to provide their own needs from local resources, and a willingness to collaborate with each other on a small scale. That’s what makes it important.”
For More Information:
Friday, December 13th
Make It Fresh! Creative Storytelling Showcase & Celebration
at SoleSpace [1714 Telegraph Ave, Oakland]
FREE! (limited seating, so get there early!)
Hosted by Josh Healey and Chinaka Hodge
Music from DJLN
Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) marks the 24th storm hitting the Philippines this year. In the past decade super typhoons and tsunamis caused by climate change have haunted communities in the Pacific, resulting in constant displacement and rebuilding each year.
Eerily, Typhoon Haiyan arrives at the same time as UN climate negotiations, COP 19, convenes in Warsaw this week. Philippine climate negotiator Naderev Saño publicly commenced a hunger strike during negotiations, as a plea to the world to act swiftly on climate change. Saño’s home province, Leyte is one of the primary targets hit by the super typhoon.
Amidst the tragedy of the super typhoon, we are reminded that extreme ecological disruption in the Philippines has been a reality since the beginning of its colonial history. In 2012 alone, over 10 million Filipinos were displaced by climate disasters. There are over 400,000 Filipinos living in the Bay Area, many of whom immigrated here because of drastic ecological and economic changes in the country. They, like many other immigrants, can be called the first wave of climate refugees.
But let’s be clear, Typhoon Haiyan is not a climate disaster only because it is an extreme weather event. It is also a climate disaster because the capacity of the islands to weather the storms have been eroded by the same thing that is making the weather worse – decades of deforestation, mining, industrial development, displacement, urbanization, and labor exploitation. US imperialism in the Philippines has been paving the way, and driving us to climate disasters for a very long time. The eradication of traditional livelihoods, the exploitation of farmers by the green revolution, and the open door to mining companies by debt dependence are also drivers of climate disruption.
Within a few hundred years people in the Philippines, like so many other places, have gone from sustaining their communities through a complex, diverse and interdependent set of economic and ecological relationships – held together by a sacred relationship to the places they call home – to being forced to extract, exploit and export everything from labor to gold to coconut. This is the true disaster that has been unfolding before our eyes. This is just one more chapter of a terribly tragic, but reasonably predictable, consequence of an economy based entirely on exploitation.
Movement Generation stands in solidarity with the Philippines. Please join us in direct disaster relief. NAFCON and TIGRA are both reliable Philippine Solidarity organizations (Bay Area based and Filipino run) that you can send your donations to:
National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON), nafconusa.org, 415-333-6267, firstname.lastname@example.org
NAFCON USA is launching a Bay Area wide relief taskforce – Taskforce Haiyan – this week. Organizations and individuals interested in joining the taskforce can contact NAFCON for more info.
Transnational Institute for Grassroots Research and Action (TIGRA), transnationalaction.org
Photo credits: Erik de Castro/Reuters (top), NAFCON USA (bottom)Tags: Community News, Online Actions
Posted by Carla Perez, MG Collective Member
The Women’s Healing Clinic was a huge success and an AMAZING and life shifting experience for most everyone who was a part of it. The universe conspired with us – the Healing Clinic Collective - to create the perfect space, held in an ideal location, with the right set of healing modalities and individual healers, a bomb crew of dedicated and super hard working volunteers, all the food and materials we needed, almost 400 women-identified people and children (and some men partners hanging around) and an energy of safety, care, radical acts of love and immense generosity.
People came in with broken spirits and ailing bodies…and most left feeling rejuvenated, hopeful, relieved, healed, and most of all, grateful! In addition to several testimonies of physical pains that were alleviated, perhaps the clearest testimony of the healing space we created was the fact that many people, after being treated, decided to stay and hang out at the clinic for the remainder of the day! “Just being here is healing.” I cannot count how many times I heard that. Even people who were not able to sign up for treatment stayed to enjoy the atmosphere, and some even offered to volunteer on the spot!
A quick snapshot…
Countless embraces, words and tears of gratitude
Cries of joy and sighs of relief
Newly found smiles
Happy mamas and playful children
Inclusive community of wombyn
Copal incense, rattles and feathers
Smudging for the first time
Saying Fuck Kaiser
Thank you ~ Gracias ~ Tlazocamati
To the Organizing Committee of the Healing Clinic Collective, to all the Practitioners and Volunteers who made it possible, to all the beautiful people who stepped up for themselves and brought their light to the Clinic, and to MG for it’s generosity, and our grace in politicizing the sacred. Most of us in the movement know…or feel…that personal healing from systemic and individual trauma is actually a critical component for the uplifting of the masses and a strong movement for fundamental social change. Yet, it is too rarely an explicit and intentional body of work that we create and dedicate time and resources to. I myself wondered how many people would really come to a clinic offering “Limpias” (energy/spiritual cleanses)?? But the People have spoken…from deep East Oakland to the Berkeley flats, Richmond and the Excelsior in SF…”When is there going to be another Clinic??”Stay tuned for the Future of the Healing Clinics. The Collective will be holding a Men’s Healing Clinic in 2014, and a Healing Clinic for Youth in 2015. We are in the process of assessing our capacity to repeat the Women’s Healing Clinic next year and/or more often. Updates will come through MG, and eventually our own website.
Big Love & Healing Vibes
Carla & the Healing Clinic Collective
FREE – First Come, First Serve Sessions
@ Humanist Hall (390 27th St, Oakland)
Free & metered parking available
Are there women in your life that hold trauma and physical illnesses and could really use some natural healing? Do you have comrades, organizational members or relatives that don’t access this care because it’s not affordable?!
The Healing Clinic Collective, with Movement Generation, is co-hosting the Women’s Healing Clinic 2013.
The Women’s Healing Clinic is a free 2-day traditional healing clinic meant to provide free non-western and/or non-pharmaceutical healing treatment sessions to women, including gender non-conforming and trans people, who suffer from physical, mental and spiritual illnesses resulting from systemic and personal traumas or abuse, and that have the least access to holistic loving care.
The Clinic is targeting women who are survivers of domestic and sexual abuse, street violence and police brutality, in or post recovery from addiction, pregnant and low-income, previously incarcerated, and in general are over-worked, under-resourced and under-cared for. Please refer women in your life who are part of these target populations to the Women’s Healing Clinic!
Healers/practitioners will be offering free, high quality, natural medicine and techniques including:
Childcare available ✦ Practitioners available in English & Spanish
For more details, including directions, visit our website, or contact:
Angela Angel : email@example.com
Click below for English (left) or Spanish (right) flyers.Community News, MG Events