Georgia WAND hosted the US Climate Action Network (USCAN) in-person Building Power from the Grassroots Up meeting at our Georgia Hill Office Building for two days in January. USCAN is one of our strongest coalitions and supporter of our work towards Nuclear Harm Reduction and Climate Justice and Equitable and Sustainable Community Development.
On the first day, attendees participated in an asset mapping conversation followed with suggestions and feedback on the current progress of the asset mapping process currently underway. Nuclear Harm Reduction and Climate Justice Coordinator, Janie Hill Scott and executive director, Lindsay Harper, together held a discussion on climate intersections of climate, race, gender, and policing. Lindsay shared learnings and impacts on the Neighborhood Planning Unit-V (NPU-V) and Janie discussed the implications in a rural community like Burke County. They highlighed the political and racial dynamics of a rural area versus urban areas and how we can engage in power building and civic engagement opportunities. The discussion closed with a brainstorm of best practices for how coalitions can work together from the bottom up to build power on all levels.
On the second day, the full group broke out into smaller groups for a SWOT analyses on direct action, civic engagement, legislative issues, and community needs. After the report out from each of the four categories, there was a presentation on the USCAN Vision for Equitable Climate Action and the group elicited feedback. Lastly, participants were presented with an Arm in Arm and beta test. The meeting culminated in a discussion of action items and a timeline for completion.
For more information, please send an email to Janie Hill-Scott at Janie@GeorgiaWAND.org.
Arm in Arm is an initiative that was seeded by members of USCAN, but is open for anyone to pick up. Arm in Arm’s objective is to organize our communities to ignite a transformational era that ends the climate crisis by centering economic and racial justice. It aims through its efforts to build toward a massive decentralized escalated action through 2023, including calling for mass work stoppages and boycotts when the moment is ripe. The structure is a distributed organizing model with autonomous hubs and existing organizational supporters. Arm in Arm is set up to fill gaps in the climate movement and network, including being: (1) a home for unaffiliated adults over 35 to have a clear path to leadership and escalation; and (2) an overall strategy for mass escalation that multiple organizations could operate within.