2014-2015 is the Poverty Initiative’s 10th Anniversary Year. Since 2003 we have been raising up a network of leaders dedicated to building a social movement to end poverty led by the poor. Our model and inspiration has always been to reignite the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King's Poor People's Campaign. As economic conditions continue to grow more desperate, Dr. King's vision of uniting the poor across lines of division to end poverty becomes more important than ever.
On April 24, 2014, we will convene our vast network of leaders, friends and supporters at our home at Union in New York City for a Movement Celebration in James Chapel at 6.30 pm. As part of the evening’s celebration, we will honor and recognize all those who have been instrumental in building up this network that is taking up the charge to re-ignite Dr. King’s vision for today.
Please register here for the Movement Celebration.
This year we are also launching our 10th Anniversary Fundraising Campaign. As the Poverty Initiative’s network of Poverty Scholars and leaders has expanded across 28 states and 17 countries around the world, our resource demands have grown as well.
This 10th Anniversary Fundraising Campaign has the goal of raising $100,000 In order to strengthen our capacity to deepen and expand this important work.
As part of this campaign, we are including a call for PI’s $10 for 10 Sustainers Drive, identifying those willing to make monthly contributions to support our work. Our goal with this Drive is to raise $10,000 a year in monthly gifts. To date, we have received monthly sustainership pledges from $5 to $100 from nearly 40 people, totaling over $700 per month or almost $8500 annually.
All of these gifts, big and small, sustain and grow our work in material ways, especially as we consider the financial sustainability of our long-term efforts to re-ignite the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s Poor People’s Campaign for today and the challenges of broadening and deepening our grassroots network.
Please consider making a donation – or becoming a PI Sustainer – today.
We look forward to celebrating with you soon, and building the movement we need to end poverty, for today and tomorrow.
The Poverty Initiative
Poverty Scholars Barbara Robbins and Zack Carter from Alabama Fisheries Cooperative in Bayou La Batre, AL (part of the Southern Federation Cooperatives) take part in the Caravan for Democracy from Montgomery, AL to Washington, DC.
The Poverty Initiative and the Kairos Center join leaders from Alabama, including Zack and Barbara, for the Caravan for Democracy. On Wednesday, March 12, Saving OurSelves (SOS), a statewide coalition based in Alabama, will arrive in Washington, DC to take a stand against the attacks on voting rights happening throughout the South. The caravan launches out of the Annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee in Selma held over the weekend. On Monday, 3/10, the caravan starts with a rally in Montgomery, AL. Then, over the course of two days, the caravan will hold rallies in Atlanta, GA, Columbia, SC, Raleigh, NC, Richmond, VA, and then finally the nation's capitol.
Last year, the US Supreme Court gutted the 1965 Voting Rights Act, and since that decision, there has been an onslaught of unbridled policies calculated to suppress votes, discriminate against the poor on the whole, and poor people of color in particular. People throughout the South have not taken this affront to democracy lying down. From the Moral Mondays struggle in North Carolina to Saving OurSelves' Truth and Justice Tuesdays in Alabama, people are getting organized. In addition to defending voting rights, these struggles coming out of the South are raising key human rights issues, especially the oppression of the poor.
In March 1965, marchers in Selma, AL were brutally attacked as they crossed the Pettus Bridge. This event that came to be known as "Bloody Sunday" helped set the stage for the passage of the Voting Rights Act later that year. In the struggle for a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, a great victory was won 49 years ago. Now this battle must be fought again.
SavingOurselves, a coalition of community and religious leaders across Alabama have taken up the charge to wage a year long campaign leading up to the 50th anniversary of the Selma march. Their goal is to build a campaign across the South, in 50 cities, to "take back the vote."
Wednesday's Washington March and Rally Itinerary
2:30-2:40 PM: Caravan assembles at COLUMBUS PLAZA (Across from Union Station)
2:40 PM: March begins - heads up First St. to the U.S. Supreme Court
3:00-3:30 PM: US SUPREME COURT RALLY (1 First St, NE Washington, DC 20543)
3:30-4 PM: March to CAPITAL BUILDING.
4:00 PM: U. S. CAPITAL RALLY (100 E Capitol St. NE Washington, DC 20003)
- Please follow our delegation on Facebook, Twitter, and our websites (povertyinitiative.org, kairoscenter.org).
- Read more about our developing relationship with the Moral Mondays Movement by reading our post to our blog “A New & Unsettling Force”
- Help us get to Raleigh! Please consider supporting the delegation at http://povertyinitiative.org/donate
Greetings from the Kairos Center and the Poverty Initiative:
Now is the time to reserve a seat on our bus from NYC to Raleigh to join the Moral March. And spread the word to all of your friends, family, and other contacts.
Moral March NYC Kairos Bus Registration
Reserve your seat on the bus from New York City to Raleigh, North Carolina for the Moral March by filling out this registration form by Friday, January 24:
We will leave from Union Theological Seminary (3041 Broadway @ 121st Street NYC) on Friday February 7th in the early morning at 6:00 am and it will take us to Raleigh (10 hr bus ride)–arriving Friday late afternoon / early evening.
The March itself is on Saturday February 8th at 10:00 am. We will participate and then get back on the bus in the middle of the afternoon to head back to NYC, arriving late at night of the 8th / early morning of the 9th.
Spread the Word on Facebook
Join the Facebook event.
Join the conversation on Twitter
Tag #MoralMarch @ncnaacp
Whether your getting on the bus or not, we ask you to consider supporting this mobilization by donating to the effort. It is very much appreciate and will help to guarantee we are able to support the participation of a diverse delegation of community, low-income, faith leaders, and other folks to this important event. You can make a contribution via the Poverty Initiative either online or by mail:
Donate online at povertyinitiative.org/donate to make your tax deductible donation with a credit card on Union's secure server - just select "Poverty Initiative" in the "Designation" pull-down menu after you enter the amount of your donation. You can make a one time or recurring donation (weekly, monthly, quarterly, annually).
Or make checks payable to "Union Theological Seminary." Please enter "Poverty Initiative" in the memo line can be mailed to: Poverty Initiative at Union Theological Seminary, 3041 Broadway, New York, NY 10027
If you should have any questions or other ideas, please don't hesitate to be in touch with the Kairos Center / Poverty Initiative.
In celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Poverty Initiative, we are excited to announce our $10 for 10 Sustainers Campaign.
Please share the news of our $10 for 10 Sustainers Campaign and ask others to join us!
If you have any questions or ideas of how we might grow our campaign, please do not hesitate to contact Dawn Plummer (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Shailly Barnes (email@example.com).
With love and gratitude,
Dawn, Shailly and all of us at the Poverty Initiative
Celebrating the Growing Healthcare Is a Human Right Movement:
An evening in honor of Vermont Human Rights Leader Peg Franzen
With Laura Flanders, Founder and Host GRITtv.org
Special Video Tributes from Senator Bernie Sanders and Ben & Jerry
December 10th, 7 pm, Church Center for the United Nations
777 United Nations Plaza, New York
On Human Rights Day we celebrate the growing movement for health care as a public good and human right. We invite you to join us and Laura Flanders for a dialogue about innovative campaigns to go beyond Obamacare, pioneered in Vermont, Maryland, Maine, and Pennsylvania.
We will honor one of the movement’s most inspiring human rights leaders, the late Peg Franzen, former president of the Vermont Workers’ Center, who exemplifies the power of people to effect change. The Healthcare Is a Human Right Campaign made Vermont the first state in the country to pass a law for a universal, publicly financed health care system.
We will be joined by representatives from the Healthcare Is a Human Right campaigns in Maine, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Vermont, which collectively form the vanguard of a new human rights movement for universal health care.
We hope you will join us for this celebration!
Reception at 7 pm
Wine, tapas and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream will be served.
To RSVP visit www.nesri.org/2013HumanRightsDayEvent
For further information, contact Laura Gosa at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hosted by the National Economic and Social Rights Initiative (NESRI) and the Poverty Initiative at Union Theological Seminary.
The event is sponsored by:
- Ben and Jerry’s Foundation
- Center for Constitutional Rights
- Center for Popular Democracy
- Center for Reproductive Rights
- Center for Women’s Global Leadership, Rutgers University
- Discount Foundation
- Family Values at Work
- Grassroots Global Justice Alliance
- Healthcare for the 99%
- Healthcare NOW!-NYC
- Human Rights Institute at Columbia Law School
- IWHRC at CUNY Law School
- Jobs With Justice
- Johnson Family Foundation
- Leitner Center for International Law and Justice
- Ms. Foundation
- National Domestic Workers Alliance
- NYU Center for Human Rights and Global Justice
- United Workers Congress
- US Human Rights Network
Celebrating the launch of Kairos: The Center on Religions, Rights and Social Justice at Union Theological Seminary
As the Poverty Initiative celebrates 10 years of raising up religious and community leaders in the movement to end poverty, we are excited to announce the launch of Kairos*: The Center on Religions, Rights and Social Justice at Union Theological Seminary.
We invite you to join us! Register today
November 15, 2013
9:00 am - 9:00 pm
Union Theological Seminary
New York City, NY
We will gather with scholars and activists from struggles around the globe to look at the positive and negative roles religion plays in the fight for dignity, freedom and justice.
Participants will include Rev. Dr. Raphael Warnock (Ebenezer Baptist Church), Abdullahi An-Na’im (Emory University School of Law), Rev. Jennifer Butler (Faith in Public Life), Rachel Feldman (Bend the Arc), Martin Johnstone (Church of Scotland), Albert Ngubane (Abahlali baseMjondolo or the South African Shackdwellers Movement), leaders from Nuns on the Bus, Rev. William Barber II (Moral Mondays Movement), Poverty Initiative Poverty Scholars organizations, and many more.
The day long symposium will conclude with a reflection and celebration of the sources of hope for the realization of the new reality that is struggling to be born.
Background on Kairos:
We live in a time of tremendous possibility but also great peril for the dignity and rights of people around the globe, a time that demands decisive action based on serious reflection and analysis. Waves of mass movements--the 2008 global food riots, the Arab Spring and the 2011 Occupy protests--have given dramatic voice to widespread popular demands for dignity and rights.
Kairos: the Center on Religion, Rights and Social Justice aims to strengthen a mutually beneficial and reinforcing relationship between the world’s religions and the global struggle for human rights by challenging the efforts which seek to create conflict between them. Through rigorous scholarship, applied research, and reciprocal education and practice with scholars and movement leaders, it works to contribute to urgently needed transformative movements for social change that can draw on the strengths of both religions and human rights.
* Kairos is an ancient Greek word for a time when conditions are right for the accomplishment of a crucial action; the opportune and decisive moment; also a moment when the eternal breaks into history.
Join the Poverty Initiative and other members of New York City's social justice community on Monday for a solidarity rally called by Picture the Homeless in front of the South African Embassy to show support for our brothers and sisters facing state violence & repression in Durban. We hope you can join us. Please spread the word!
When: Monday October 14th, 2013 11:30am - 2:00pm
Where: South African Consulate, 333 E 38th St NYC
Our purpose is to show solidarity with the Abahlali baseMjondolo movement in South Africa.
Visit the Facebook Event page for this action.
Read the account of Bandile Mdlalose, General Secretary of Abahlali baseMjondolo Movement S.A, Seven Days of Thoughts in Westville Prison
Read the NESRI statement of solidary