Let human rights live
Oppression is a constant and shared experience among marginalized people around the world. Violence against the vulnerable is an inherited tradition-- this isn’t new news, but I’m now aware of it in a way I’ve never been before. I mean, I live as a black woman in a world controlled by men, capitalism, and white supremacy. I experience blatant and subtle forms of violence directed at woman on the regular. But life feels different for me lately. More intensity and uneasiness. It could be the constant updates of tragic events and acts of oppression delivered to me by way of internet access. Maybe I’m finally mature enough to understand that no one progresses if any of us are still oppressed.
I’ve taken control of news presented to me courtesy of internet connections everywhere. It freed up time so that I could research organizations that confront situations that inspire tragic new headlines. My goal is to transmute my uneasiness to critical action. If I was put on Earth to spread helpful info on resources in aid for the under served, than I better get to it. Listed below are a few organizations that inspired me to feel strong rather than discomfort. I am creating a living list of resources and organizations that do honest work to support their communities. It’s coming soon.
Marshae Jones & The Yellowhammer Fund
The government’s attack on women’s bodies allowed Alabama to indict Marshae Jones for manslaughter after she suffered a miscarriage. Marshae, 28, got into a fight that escalated and ended with her being shot in the stomach, the gun wound terminated her pregnancy. She was five months pregnant. Since Marshae was the initiator of the fight, Alabama deemed her responsible for the death of the fetus and arrested her. She posted a $50,000 bail on Thursday, June 27th.
It’s unclear if the manslaughter charge will stick but news of Marshae’s case elicited support from the masses. The Yellowhammer Fund is one organization that has spoken up in defense of Marshae Jones. The Yellowhammer Fund provides funding for anyone seeking care at one of Alabama’s three abortion clinics. They also help with lodging and travel expenses for those in need. Yellohammer Fund is a member of the National Network of Abortion Funds and has been an advocate for reproductive justice since early 2018.
The governor of Alabama signed a strict abortion bill in May 2019, one which bans abortion at every stage of pregnancy and criminalizes the doctor who performs the precedure.
Other grassroots movements & organizations to support.
RAICES is an award-winning nonprofit that provides underserved immigrant children, families, and refugees in Central and South Texas. The organization is a timely resource to support given the concentration camps and horrors at the border. RAICES received three out of four stars from the Charity Navigator and a platinum seal of transparency from the charity watchdog, GuideStar. RAICES is currently staffed with 50ish lawyers who helped issue lawsuits and complains on behalf of detained families.
BlackGirlsCode works with individuals and organizations to introduce girls to opportunities found in the STEM field. Their most pressing needs are computers science experts, equipment, and monetary donations. The organization started in San Fran in 2011, but has since made efforts to take their cause across the nation. BlackGIrlCode’s ultimate goal is “provide African-American youth with the skills to occupy some of the 1.4 million computing job openings expected to be available in the U.S. by 2020, and to train 1 million girls by 2040.”
Queer Women of Color Media Arts Project is a nonprofit with a mission to “build community through art and activism.” QWCMAP supports creative works -film work, to be specific- that address social justice issues impacting LGBTQIA women of color. It’s goal is to be apart of the diversification of the film industry. They’ve offered free workshops for emerging queer women of color filmmakers and hold the Queer Women of Color Media Film Festival in San Francisco. They’ve created over 200 new films since it was founded in the year 2000. Visit them if you’re a marginalized, queer woman looking to jump into film, or if you just want to help the cause.
Asian Arts Initiative is based out of the Chinatown North neighborhood of Philly. Their mission is to connect cultural expression and social change, AAI uses art to tell the diverse stories of Asian Americans. They offer youth workshops, exhibitions opportunities and artist residencies.
Public Citizen is another nonprofit focused on public interest. Their mission is to defend democracy and to make sure the government is working for its people. It doesn’t endorse any political candidates nor does it accept government or corporate dollars. Public Citizen is proud of the fact that they are an independent operation, they have no fear when it comes to confronting the powerful and wealthy elite.
UnidosUS, FKA National Council of La Raza, is another nonpartisan organization, it serves the Hispanic community through policy analysis, state and national advocacy, and program work in communities across the nation. UnidosUS is close to reaching 300 Affiliates within the United States; the growing network works to improve life for the millions of Latinos in the country through civic engagement, in civil rights and immigration, education, and so on.
Indivisible Civics is a nonprofit that came to be after Tr/mp’s election. The Indivisible Civics’ mission is to “educate and empower civic leaders at the community level across the country.” Indivisible Civics provides local leaders with resources that help them successfully guide members of society, and strengthen relationships to encourage community organization.
The Women’s Prison Association works with women currently and formerly involved in the justice system. According to their website, it’s the oldest advocacy group for women within the United States. They offer children and family services, alternatives for incarceration, reentry programs and use art as a form of intervention. WPA is especially important for women of color-- they are a typically underserved and overlooked in society and especially when it comes to incarcerated population.