Movement Matters is excited to announce the return of our weeklong Community Organizing & Popular Education Institute (OI) this Spring 2022!
This uniquely tailored and comprehensive yearly training will take place from Monday, May 2nd - Friday, May 6th at the Eaton Workshop in downtown Washington, DC and will follow COVID-safe protocols. Given the current difficulties of travel and the safety needs of everyone, our 2022 Organizing Institute will be open only to participants from the DMV (DC, MD, VA).
The necessity to continue to train organizers and popular educators is even more important as our constituents and communities are being pushed into a normalization period while their representation continues to be ignored or erased.
Movement Matters' yearly Organizing Institute provides an instructive and challenging learning and action space that deepens participants' vision, skills, values, and capacity. As importantly it also supports cross-pollination and solid relationship building among organizers—a key element of successful movement building campaigns in DC and the DMV.
We will open our trainings to organizers and popular educators from around the nation this Summer 2022. We deeply appreciate everyone's enthusiasm and trust as we slowly return to in-person sessions.
We take the opening and teaching of our weeklong Organizing Institute very seriously given the safety concerns of organizers and their families/loved-ones, and as we move through another winter filled with uncertainty for them, for our communities, and for the change work we are all trying to achieve.
Media shapes what we think is possible. It shapes our dreams while we sleep. It creates meaning we act on while awake. During this collective moment of extensive grief, anger and injustice, we as cultural workers must continue creating images, sounds, stories in ways that commits us to the future we want to wake up in; stories with memory and vision; stories that hold us, deepen us, and propel us towards action.
We know all too well the rampant disinformation, silencing, and fear mongering that dominant media is unleashing onto our communities during this moment: a hyperfocus on crime and the need for police, an erasure of the real stories of excluded and “essential” workers, and mischaracterizations of campaigns that call to #CancelRent, #DefundThePolice, and #ExtendTheMoratorium.
We recognize this type of media as a tactic of people in power within a larger strategy to remain in power and minimize the urgency for dissent. We recognize the impacts of this superficial and disconnected storytelling: retraumatization, memory loss, hopelessness, escapism. This tactic is not restricted to the US. We see the manufacturing of imperialist interests disguised as a call to revolution in the coverage of Cuba and other Caribbean and Latin American countries. We see a complete lack of coverage of African nations, unless there is sensationalistic violence that is reported without context.
Building on tools and frameworks from across our movement, Our Stories, Our Meaning: Advanced Community Media Studio will be an online space for content creators who are already using their craft as a tool to challenge power to focus on:
MM’s Advanced Community Media Studio is ideal for cultural workers and organizers who are developing a specific media project alongside a community organization or community formation. Four online studio sessions will take place between October 1st and October 29th. The first two sessions will be all-day hands-on trainings, the third session will be 1-on-1's with participants and our studio leads, and the last session will be dedicated to presenting and receiving feedback on specific projects.
Cultural workers, youth media organizations, filmmakers, public media advocates and organizers have all put in so much work for us to reach this golden age of QT-BIPOC film production, where access and representation are central tenets of equity in entertainment.
Even as we celebrate, many of us hear the cautionary voices of our political elders telling us, “we have been here before!” And still many others hear, “there are still so many other ways and so much more we can attain!”
These case studies provide but a fractal of the path that lies beyond access and representation; they point to radical institutional and systemic transformation, not just surface level change. To ensure our stories are as powerful as our vision for liberation, we must also center conversations around ownership, power, class, and the right to creative experimentation.
Beyond Access & Representation showcases case studies that stretch all aspects of the production process to go beyond access and representation in dominant media and create our own pathways and platforms.
Transforming Vision, Power, and Leadership: