Updated: Dec 21, 2022
As the year draws to a close, we would like to express our sincerest gratitude to all of you who have been a part of our journey as we strive to create a platform for artists of color to be seen and heard. Your support has been invaluable in helping us to develop and grow as a non-profit organization. We look forward to continuing to work together to create a more equitable and inclusive space for all. Thank you!
We want to start by saying thank you for even taking the time to open our fundraiser and beginning to read this humble message. It has been a long journey so far, exploring and discovering who we are as a collective and what exactly it is that we want to offer to the community. Before we tell you where we are headed, though, it's probably best to tell you where we started and are before telling you where we are headed.
MPWRD Collective was founded in the Fall of 2019 - Spring of 2020 and was initially established as a dance collective. The initial intent was to be able to create works that allowed us as artists to tell our stories and share our experiences through movement. We had minimal traction before Shelter In Place was enacted and were dealing with the daily physical and emotional effects of COVID. For at least a few months, we sat on the idea of what MPWRD was and the ideas we had around creating a community, quietly processing what was happening in the present. With the entire world, including the artist community struggling with how to continue their work and make a living, we started to rebrand MPWRD as an artists' collective. We still spent some time trying to wrap our heads around what we were trying to accomplish by creating this collective, but now, in the Fall of 2022, we have a more robust vision of what we hope for MPWRD Artists Collective.
MPWRD operates first and foremost as a safe space and container for Black/Brown, Indigenous, & LBGTQ artists to create, collaborate on, and share their works. We are not a medium-specific collective, so we welcome movers, painters, healing practitioners, musicians, and many others. Outside of this general idea around creating safe community spaces, we also operate a community space and nonprofit in which we plan yearly programming & events in the way of performances, regular gatherings (Dance Cyphers, Cultural Summits, Etc.), and Healing spaces. We have cohort groups and privates, and we are still growing and evolving in terms of ideas around how to continue creating meaningful community bonds.
We, in short, are looking to make a living, breathing community that embodies village communities like our ancestors have. This idea that when you enter space, you come as you are… You can enter a space without having to sell your worth by trying to market your work constantly. We are striving to create an open space where colonized ideas around the commodification of art are done away with.
As a secondary feature, we also double as a community resource hub, so we try to gather information about crowdfunding, community resources like housing assistance, International community outreach, mutual aid and anything else that may help aid the community by sharing.
Where Are We Headed?
We are in a great transition as we head into the new year, and we plan our first fiscal budget for programming, events, and performances. Most of the funding for our events has come solely from our income, and while we are so humbled to be able to curate these events and have been blessed to be able to provide for the community, it is at this time that we need your help. Through your kind donation, we will be able to tackle three essential tasks to help us succeed in the new year:
Our first goal for the new year is to find a place where the entire collective can live and work in the Berkeley/Oakland area. Currently, equipment staging and office spaces are being held in our homes, and much of our work spills into our living spaces. There is also a need for a localized space to run events, classes & programs regularly, including but not limited to practitioner workshops and youth & adult dance classes, among other things. With your help, we plan on leasing a [phone redacted] square foot space with office and storage space to serve the communities better we are a part of.
Along with aiding us in securing a place to rest the load we carry, we are also looking toward the new year and how we can continue supporting the current programming. With your help, we could provide some simple improvements to our Archive Dance Sessions that would help with the ease of running our monthly dance cyphers and add to the vibe. Through your gracious donation, we could afford simple things like a new PA System, a DJ to spin for us each month, an allowance to provide space for vendors, and some other special competition events.
The last thing we want to focus on this coming year is learning about self and culture. We are planning an Immersion trip in June to Iloko Nortes, Lubuagan, and Zambales Philippines to learn about textile work, dance, and traditional healing medicine(including food). We also are planning our trip to Central America later in the year so that we, as Directors, can create better-informed work and, more importantly, LEARN ABOUT OUR ANCESTRAL HERITAGE and how to respect our roots better. Through your donations, we can fund our trip and give back to the culture bearers who will be helping us through this learning process.
Donation Link: https://gofund.me/4a6554bf
Mandela Partners' Re-Generate Opportunity Program
"Our Re-Generate Opportunity Program is gearing up to begin a new cohort in the new year!
Re-gen is a 12-week culinary kitchen training program connecting residents with barriers to employment to food jobs with a livable wage, supportive work environment, and personal growth opportunities. This program offers fair chance employment in collaboration with local East Bay food businesses.
⏰Training begins 1/23/2023 and will be held at
📍 First Presbyterian Church in Oakland.
Interested in joining? Fill out an application via https://tinyurl.com/Regenapply or the link in our bio.
We will follow up with applicants in early January.
DM @mandelapartners for questions! 🌴✨"
Follow Mandela Partners on Instagram (@mandelapartners) and visit their website:
Black Latin American History & Contemporary Topics (Four-part course on Zoom)
REGISTRATION LINK: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/invierno-negro-black-latin-american-history-contemporary-topics-tickets-482039371737
PLEASE READ IN ITS ENTIRETY BEFORE PURCHASING TICKETS:
ALL classes are 7pm-9pm EST
Recorded Classes will be available for participants.
The price is $45 per person per class. The price for the four-class package is $170. The zoom link for the first class scheduled for January 1st will be sent via Eventbrite. Zoom link for the proceeding classes will be sent a few hours before each class. Zoom link will be sent to all e-mails in ticket purchase. Make sure to spell your e-mail correctly. We are not responsible for correspondence that is missed because of misspelled emails. Please check your spam folders or use the search function if you do not see correspondence with the zoom link."
"To claim that the Latinx does not fit within the black-white binary is ahistorical. I argue that "Latinx" as a racial/social identity serves to erase through the "blanquizar"(whiten", and "morenizar"(browning" of the racialized experiences of Black people from the region" (Wallace, 2019).
Bahasa Indonesia Online Course (Beginner | Intermediate | Advanced)
Bahasa Indonesia Online Course Spring 2023 registration is now open for beginner, intermediate, and advanced level. Enroll before January 6th, 2023 by completing the online registration form: https://bit.ly/BahasaClassRegistration.
Eligible participants will be notified on January 13th, 2023. Courses shall begin on 3rd week of January. Participants are expected to engage actively in the online class that will be held once a week (@2 hours) for 14 weeks.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Mutual Aid for Youth Soccer League in Panama
Donation Link: https://gofund.me/2ade21ae
We are a project focused on the children and young people of our community (Curundú, Panama City, Panama) which seeks to provide real opportunities for personal and professional growth to our members based on education, youth development, nutrition and sports.
ADC has four soccer teams and because of mutual aid, all youth can play in the youth soccer leagues in Panama, free of charge--the only soccer league offering this solidarity work as youth live in socio-economic and politically marginalized communities in Panama.
-Unique project that seeks to achieve real opportunities with dynamic and creative methods in order to guarantee a professional citizen in every sense of the word.
-Participate in competitive tournaments
-Teach academic classes (schooling)
-Facilitate workshops for youth development
-Formalize the project as a non-profit organization
-Create the first sports education center in Panama
Somos un proyecto el cual va enfocado a los niños, niñas y jóvenes de nuestra comunidad (Curundú) el cual busca brindar oportunidades reales de superación personal y profesional a nuestros miembros con base en la educación, Nutrición y deporte
-Proyecto único que busca lograr oportunidades reales con métodos dinámicos y creativos para así garantizar un ciudadano profesional en todo el sentido de la palabra.
-Reconocido por logros académico, deportivo y cultural del país.
-Participar en torneos competitivos
-Impartir clases académicas (escolaridad) Formalizar el proyecto como organización sin fines de lucro
-Crear el primer centro educativo deportivo del país.
Free Therapy to Black Women and Femmes
@sadgirlsclub is gifting free therapy to Black women and femmes, just in time for Sad Girl Season. Founder @elyse.fox recognized that having a therapist who looks like you can often make or break a therapeutic relationship, but the majority of therapists in the US are white. That’s why she launched Remedy, a free 1:1 talk therapy program. Applications are considered on a rolling basis and will be re-opening soon! “Through Remedy, Sad Girls Club is gifting therapy to members of their community who are unable to afford it but are in need of mental health support. They are also providing a means for their community to connect with mental health professionals who look like them.” Tap the link in our bio to read more. #UnbotheredArticles
Follow @sadgirlsclub on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/sadgirlsclub/