October 20th, 2022 – 6pm – ZOOM
While much of our time is centered on struggling against continual crises, there is a wealth of work taking place around Virginia that is seeking to build a true Commonwealth. Whether in environmental justice, land sovereignty, mutual aid, or making sure people have a voice in the decisions that impact their lives, we see an immense amount work, little by little, creating a Virginia that realizes our collective well-being and liberation. Doing so on the foundations started by Indigenous and Black communities.
For VASEN’s October Learn-In, we wanted to bring together a few of the many voices that are striving to understand and realize these ecosystems with a little perspective about what others are doing across the South.
New Economy Network – Emma Kelly – Facilitated by Appalachian Voices, the New Economy Network is a group of local citizens that focuses on sustainable economic development and transition in Southwest Virginia’s coalfields. As an open forum for groups and individuals, the initiative engages in economic development, diversification, and transition work in the seven counties in far Southwest Virginia.
Next System Studies – Professor Ben Manski – A new program at George Mason University, Next system studies involve research into questions of systemic design, change, and movements – questions that ask, “Where are we going and where do we need to go? How might we get there? What must we do to get there?”
Highlander Center – April Taylor – Highlander’s Economics and Governance program supports groups of folks organizing in communities to maintain, deepen, expand, and/or strengthen their solidarity economy organizing and connect with other communities in the region with similar goals and vision.
Format – The Learn-in is meant to be a space of exchange and solidarity building. This event will have the presenters share their work for 10-15 minutes. Then we will collectively synthesize themes that lead us to further action.
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