Monday, December 29, 2008

Power Grows From The Pages Of Your Checkbook


Over the years, I’ve come to appreciate the golden rule of grassroots fundraising: If you tell the truth, take the risks that the times demand, and operate from a place of integrity, the money will follow. But only if you ask. We asked, and you came through.

Today’s mail brought another $2,925 in support for our work, bringing the total raised in donations since November 1 to $219,046.54. Our $180,000 Winter Fund Drive goal has officially been smashed. An unusually difficult year is at an end, and Real Change is operating from a place of health and strength. Our debt is retired. Our landlord gets his last six months’ rent. You made it happen, and we thank you.

You get that Real Change works; that we engage our vendors, readers, and allies in addressing the issues that directly affect all of us. You get that our capacity to mobilize is based in our fifteen-year history of walking alongside those who have the least, and in the growing web of relationships that is Real Change.

You get that the time to organize is now, and that with your help, a different reality is possible. 2009 brings its own challenges. With your help, we’ll meet those as well.


Race and Poverty in Seattle

Mass homelessness is a structural fact of the economy, and is the visible result of three decades of increasing inequality, combined with social policies that maintain rather than reduce poverty.

Homelessness in Seattle and King County is growing and becoming more racialized. The 2008 One Night Count documented a 15% increase in homelessness over the previous year. During this snapshot early morning January count, 5,800 people were in emergency and transitional shelter, and another 2,300 homeless were found surviving outside on a night when the shelters were full. The count also documents that although Blacks make up just five percent of county residents, they make up 40 percent of King County’s homeless. This number is up four percent from just two years prior.

As the effects of the sub-prime loan collapse continue to ripple through the economy, creating budget deficits at all levels of government, essential survival services are at risk of being cut back or eliminated at the time when they are needed most.

As inequality in Seattle has widened, city policy on homelessness has shifted to the reduction of visible poverty and a focus on criminalization. Sadly, this has brought a zero-tolerance approach to public camping with the provision of few viable alternatives. This policy of homeless sweeps has been promoted by the city through what a team of University of Washington academics has described as “a discourse of filth and contagion.” The Mayor’s focus on proactively identifying and eliminating homeless campsites from public spaces has dramatically increased the stress and desperation of street survival. Protocols designed to assure the public that these policies are humane and responsible offer little real protection to homeless campers.

The past three decades of growing homelessness and incarceration are related to the realities of a global economy that has eliminated most of the opportunities for “unskilled” work and created a largely unrecognized pool of structurally unemployed. This includes the more than five-fold increase in incarceration that has taken place since 1980, an increase that has placed one in ninety-nine Americans behind bars and left an African-American male high school dropout with a two in three chance of being imprisoned by the age of thirty-five. Seattle’s high school graduation rate for African Americans is a mere 52%.

Seattle is moving ahead with plans to build a new municipal jail to accommodate anticipated increases in incarceration. The facility will cost at least $210 million to build and another $19 million annually to operate. Money that could be used to rebuild lives will instead deepen the cycle of poverty for the most disadvantaged in our society

Seattle’s new jail is an expensive commitment to the structural racism that will surely deepen poverty in disadvantaged communities. There are alternatives — but none will happen without a grassroots fight for a better way forward.


Opportunities and Challenges

Real Change is engaged in two related campaigns to defend those who have the least. Since we uncovered the Mayor’s secret homeless sweeps last year, we have been the leading voice for better survival solutions in Seattle. Over the past year, we’ve held four overnight protest encampments at City Hall. We’ve mobilized large numbers of people for public hearings, documented consistent violations of the city’s own policy, and provided major support to the Nickelsville survival encampment that has gained the strong support of Seattle’s faith community.

Our No New Jail Campaign has challenged the Mayor’s assertion of inevitability, and elevated the jail issue from a NIMBY-based discussion of site alternatives to a community-wide debate over the role of incarceration in perpetuating race-based inequality. We are organizing a broad-based and powerful coalition to take action on this issue, and will hold a large public forum on the new jail this January.

Real Change believes that single-issue, siloed approaches to homelessness have only led to structures of mitigation that are inadequate to the obviously growing problem. In the absence of a large, activist constituency to defend the poor and economically vulnerable, human services are subject to reduction during these times of state, county, and city budget deficits.

The Real Change newspaper and Organizing Project addresses root issues of growing inequality, racial income disparity, declining housing affordability, and attacks upon basic civil rights by growing a powerful and vocal base of activists to take action on these issues. We believe that the hope that exists for structural solutions to poverty and inequality can only be realized through a powerful grassroots activism that unites constituencies across issue and class.

Real Change is well positioned for leadership on these issues. More than a thousand annual supporters of our work provide the majority of our financial support. Our independence gives Real Change enormous freedom to pursue our mission in a manner that is uncompromised by funding sources. We accountable to our base, and our base supports what we do.

Yet, Real Change still faces serious capacity issues on three fronts. Large increases in the numbers of vendors we serve, driven by the increased need and desperation on the street, have challenged our ability to adequately respond. In the face of this rising direct need, our grassroots activism is difficult to sustain. Finally, Real Change’s limited administrative capacity reduces our ability to effectively manage the resources we already have, and more aggressively grow our grassroots support.

To meet the challenges of organizing an activist response while meeting the growing direct need, Real Change needs to grow over 2009 in the following areas:

Vendor Staffing: Inadequate vendor staffing limits our ability to effectively serve the more than 350 vendors we now see each month. Real Change works to connect vendors who express a desire for services with providers that can meet their needs. Our ability to do this effectively is limited by staffing and the capacity to effectively engage the many volunteers who support our work. (Cost: $32K)

Equipment and Space: Our fifteen-year location at 2129 Second Avenue meets our needs as an inexpensive, stable location that is friendly to those we serve. The 2,000 square foot space, however, is no longer adequate to our growing staff and clientele, and the resulting pressures limit our effectiveness. Our aging technology — computers, servers, software, phone systems, etc. — need to come into this century. Over the next year, Real Change must redesign the space and upgrade the tech systems. (Cost $30K)

Administrative Infrastructure: Real Change needs an operations manager to coordinate staff management, more effectively measure and track progress toward goals and milestones, and manage the administrative details of a growing organization. This will free up the ED to organize, build community, and grow the grassroots support needed to sustain and grow our work. (Cost $45K).

Production and Online Support: Real Change newspaper staff (2.5 FTE’s) are challenged by the demands of weekly production and lack the capacity to ramp up for the more multi-media approach that a dynamic internet presence requires. A staff position that focuses on newspaper production, maintaining a multi-media website, and producing a coordinated Real Change e-newsletter will grow our readership, increase grassroots support of our work, offer a professional public face to our activism, and enhance the quality of our core service. (Cost: $40K).

At the close of 2008, Real Change is strong and healthy. We are rooted an expanding base of grassroots support and a stable foundation of earned income that grows with our circulation. We are taking the risks, telling the truth, and organizing for power. Your support makes that possible.

2009 is a new year, and many challenges remain. With your continued and growing support, we will rise. Please make your gift to Real Change today. Visit our website at realchangenews.org, or mail your donation to Real Change, 2129 2nd Ave, Seattle, WA 98121.

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

inteli gator -
joanas world -
joyful tomato -
kidney stone remedy -
learn digital photography now -
learn elements now -
linden method -
lose man boobs -
malware removal bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
niche adsense themes -
ninety day powerseller -
pc optimizer pro -
pregnancy miracle -
pregnancy without pounds -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
quit smoking today -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
retrievea lover -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket italian -
save my marriage today -

Anonymous said...

secrets book -
seo elite -
spyware cease -
spyware remover -
spy zooka -
stock assault -
talking to toddlers -
the action machine -
thebadbreathreport -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the rich jerk -
tonsil stones remedies -
top secret fat loss secret -
turbo cash generator -
turbulence training -
twitter online system -
uncle sams money -
underground hypnosis -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
water 4 gas -
wedding speech 4u -
wp goldmine -
wrap candy -
xsite pro -
zygor guides -
37 days to clean credit -
advanced defrag -
adware alert -
adware bot -
affiliate prophet -

Anonymous said...

affiliate video brander -
anti spyware -
art of approaching -
atomic blogging -
auction classified cash -
automated cash formula -
bbq book -
bloggers pay check -
blogging in action -
body building revealed -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
cheat your way thin -
chopper tattoo -
cleanup the profits -
cold sore freedom in 3 days -
commission blueprint -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
cure for bruxism -
declutter fast -
driver checker -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy member pro -
easy tv soft -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
fap turbo -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
final sync -

Anonymous said...

final uninstaller -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flatten your abs -
forex ambush -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
healthy urban kitchen -
homebrew installer -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
instant article wizard -
jamo rama -
joyful tomato -
lose man boobs -
lower body make over -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
maverick money makers -
meet your sweet -
muscle gaining secrets -
muscle gain truth -
natural cancer treatments -
niche review templates -
nyhms warcraft guides -
pappa pc -
pc booster -
pc optimizer pro -
pc secret formula -
pda flix -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
push button ecover -

Anonymous said...

reg defense -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket japanese -
rotator cuff training -
save my marriage today -
secrets book -
silent sales machine -
silver lotto -
spyware cease -
super affiliate handbook -
the 11 forgotten laws -
thebadbreathreport -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the power pause -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -
top secret fat loss secret -
turbulence training -
twitter rockstar -
uncle sams money -
underground hypnosis -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warcraft millionaire -
warcraft wealth -

Anonymous said...

warp speed fat loss -
webcomp analyst -
wedding speech 4u -
win back love -
your software website -
zox pro -
zygor guides -
500 love making tips -
acid alkaline diet -
acne no more -
advanced defrag -
adware alert -
adware bot -
affiliate elite -
anti spyware -
anti spyware bot -
article bully -
art of approaching -
auto pilot profits -
bbq book -
blogging in action -
body building revealed -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
carb rotation diet -
chopper tattoo -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
cure for tinnitus -
debt free in three -
driver checker -
duplicate file cleaner -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -

Anonymous said...

easy member pro -
easy tv soft -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
end your tinnitus -
fap winner -
fat burning furnace -
fatloss4idiots -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final sync -
final uninstaller -
firewall gold -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flatten your abs -
forex auto money -
forex auto pilot -
forex confidante -
game tester guide -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
healthy urban kitchen -
higher faster sports -
homebrew installer -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
i am big brother -
instant profit machine -
i want a teaching job -
joyful tomato -
lose man boobs -
lower body make over -
macro virus -
magic of making up -

Anonymous said...

make money taking surveys -
malware bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
moles warts removal -
money siphon system -
muscle gaining secrets -
my airfare secrets -
my miracle loans -
my out of control teen -
natural cancer treatments -
ovarian cyst cures -
pc optimizer pro -
piano for all -
prevent sweating -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
pvp bible -
quick article pro -
quit smoking today -
reg defense -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
reg tool -
relationship headquarters -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket japanese -

Anonymous said...

make money taking surveys -
malware bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
moles warts removal -
money siphon system -
muscle gaining secrets -
my airfare secrets -
my miracle loans -
my out of control teen -
natural cancer treatments -
ovarian cyst cures -
pc optimizer pro -
piano for all -
prevent sweating -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
pvp bible -
quick article pro -
quit smoking today -
reg defense -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
reg tool -
relationship headquarters -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket japanese -

Anonymous said...

rotator cuff training -
satellite tv pc master -
secrets book -
spy no more -
spyware cease -
survey scout -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the guru assassin -
the power pause -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -
turbulence training -
two minute profits -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
web traffic machines -
wedding speech 4u -
wind plans -
xp repair pro -
your fun business -
zygor guides -
500 love making tips -
acid alkaline diet -
acne no more -
advanced defrag -
anti spyware bot -
art of approaching -
banish tinnitus -
beat eczema -
blood pressure normalized -
burnthefat -

oakleyses said...

longchamp pas cher, ray ban sunglasses, tory burch outlet, longchamp outlet, tiffany and co, louis vuitton, christian louboutin outlet, oakley sunglasses wholesale, louis vuitton, prada outlet, chanel handbags, jordan shoes, christian louboutin, longchamp outlet, gucci handbags, tiffany jewelry, nike roshe, polo ralph lauren, nike air max, louis vuitton outlet, nike air max, louis vuitton outlet, uggs on sale, ray ban sunglasses, louboutin pas cher, prada handbags, cheap oakley sunglasses, ugg boots, ugg boots, sac longchamp pas cher, jordan pas cher, nike free, replica watches, michael kors pas cher, burberry pas cher, oakley sunglasses, oakley sunglasses, replica watches, kate spade outlet, oakley sunglasses, air max, louis vuitton outlet, nike free run, longchamp outlet, polo outlet, ray ban sunglasses, christian louboutin shoes, nike outlet, christian louboutin uk

oakleyses said...

hollister uk, michael kors outlet, sac vanessa bruno, nike blazer pas cher, nike air max uk, burberry handbags, new balance, michael kors, kate spade, oakley pas cher, nike air max, ray ban uk, guess pas cher, coach outlet, michael kors outlet online, nike roshe run uk, true religion outlet, michael kors outlet, michael kors outlet online, true religion outlet, uggs outlet, true religion outlet, timberland pas cher, coach purses, nike air max uk, michael kors, nike air force, nike free uk, burberry outlet, sac hermes, coach outlet store online, nike tn, michael kors outlet online, vans pas cher, hollister pas cher, north face uk, abercrombie and fitch uk, ray ban pas cher, hogan outlet, replica handbags, polo lacoste, north face, ralph lauren uk, lululemon canada, mulberry uk, converse pas cher, true religion jeans, michael kors outlet, michael kors outlet online

oakleyses said...

herve leger, gucci, bottega veneta, new balance shoes, louboutin, iphone cases, north face outlet, hollister clothing, vans outlet, nike roshe run, p90x workout, mac cosmetics, nike huaraches, longchamp uk, hollister, converse, babyliss, celine handbags, jimmy choo outlet, beats by dre, soccer jerseys, reebok outlet, chi flat iron, ferragamo shoes, giuseppe zanotti outlet, timberland boots, mont blanc pens, nike trainers uk, wedding dresses, asics running shoes, abercrombie and fitch, north face outlet, insanity workout, oakley, vans, baseball bats, soccer shoes, instyler, lululemon, valentino shoes, ray ban, nfl jerseys, hollister, nike air max, hermes belt, converse outlet, ralph lauren, nike air max, mcm handbags, ghd hair

oakleyses said...

coach outlet, swarovski crystal, hollister, thomas sabo, canada goose outlet, moncler outlet, marc jacobs, toms shoes, links of london, karen millen uk, canada goose, canada goose, louis vuitton, louis vuitton, moncler outlet, lancel, louis vuitton, montre pas cher, ugg uk, wedding dresses, canada goose uk, juicy couture outlet, pandora charms, barbour, pandora uk, pandora jewelry, replica watches, moncler, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, ugg pas cher, barbour uk, moncler uk, canada goose jackets, canada goose outlet, moncler, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, supra shoes, canada goose outlet, moncler, pandora jewelry, louis vuitton, moncler, louis vuitton, ugg, doudoune moncler, juicy couture outlet, canada goose, swarovski

Lo Lo said...

http://www.ju.edu.jo/home.aspx
Jordan University
[url]http://www.ju.edu.jo[/url]