Building Movements with Oral History in 2017

Dear Groundswell Community,

We experienced a lot in 2016.

A presidential election that shook this country to its core. Native American led organizing against environmental destruction and for Native sovereignty. Black led organizing against police brutality and anti-Blackness. Movements led by undocumented people against their exploitation and criminalization. Many personal and collective tragedies and triumphs. And everything in between.

As we approach 2017, may we be reminded of the power of people’s voices (and the documentation of these voices) in the building of strong, inclusive, liberatory social movements.

This moment demands narratives that push us to listen, reflect, organize, teach, and resist.

Will you support theGroundswell Network by renewing
your individual or institutional membership
? By making a donation? And contributing your time, skills, and talents?

Groundswell runs on the power and energy of a committed group of volunteers. But we do have a few hard expenses: website and web conference services; mini-stipends for our co-coordinators who do the not-so-glamorous, but oh-so-important work of “bottom-lining” our efforts; and the basic expenses that help maintain our online class, support our presence at conferences, and keep our bi-annual Groundswell gatherings accessible.

For 2017, we need $5,000 in annual contributions from Groundswell members in order to meet our most basic budget. We cannot continue without your financial support!

In 2016, Groundswell brought you many opportunities and resources to develop your oral history skills, share about your organizing, and build a community practice, including:

  • A soft launch of our Centering project, a collectively-produced, free, online, interview-based resource guide featuring stories of anti-oppression principles in action in oral history work
  • Our first ever Oral History for Social Justice online class!
  • Dynamic Practitioner Support Network online chats, ranging from how to ask about money, interviewing about the body, archiving oral histories, to self-care for social justice oral historians, and more!
  • Oral History for Social Justice Workshops and Meet-Ups at the Allied Media Conference, Oral History Association, and locally in New York, Chicago, Portland, and more!
  • And great blog content featuring stories about amazing projects across the country, including Student Action with Farmworkers, Listening through Time and Place, The East Garfield Park Oral History Project, the Forced Trajectory Project and more!

We need your help to keep our network going. 

Please consider renewing your membership. Membership signifies your investment in this community and your belief in our collective work. We do not want to be dependent on corporate sponsorship or grants from foundations. It is important that we are led and supported by practitioners who share our values. So renew your membership. Get your organization or department to become an institutional member. Buy a membership for a friend or family member. As poet-activist and ancestor June Jordan said in her “Poem for South African Women” (1978), “we are the ones we have been waiting for.” And it is we that will create the new, socially just world we each deserve.

Will you build with us?

Make sure that Groundswell can continue to be the unique resource that so many activists, oral historians, and cultural workers have come to value.

Please join Groundswell now.

-Alisa, Amaka, Amy, Sarah, Shane, and Vanissa
Groundswell's Core Working Group