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Announcement :: Environment : Globalization : Organizing
This Sunday--Mass. Relocalization Conference in Roxbury with McKibben, Lappé, King
by Michael Horan
16 Oct 2009
This Sunday Oct 18! Massachusetts Relocalization Conference 2009: Investing in Ourselves
Join us for a day of inspiration, information, sharing, speakers, panel discussions, workshops, tabling, great local food, music, fun, and transformative action!
When: This Sunday, October 18, 9 AM – 6:30 pm
Where: Reggie Lewis Athletic Center, 1350 Tremont St., Roxbury, MA 02120
Featured Speakers include:
Bill McKibben (Deep Economy, 350.org)
Frances Moore Lappé (Diet for a Small Planet, The Small Planet Institute)
Mel King (lifelong community activist, South End Technology Center)
Panel discussions & Workshops include:
Climate, Energy & War - Health & Relocalization - Building Local, Sustainable & Just Food Systems - Democracy and Relocalization - The Green Collar Economy - The Transition Model - Solidarity Economy - Film: The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil - The Economics of Relocalization - Worker-Owned Cooperatives - Places to Intervene in a System
For more information, including a conference program, see www.RelocalizeMassachusetts.org
Citizens from across the Commonwealth will gather together at the Reggie Lewis Center in Roxbury on Sunday, October 18th to discuss community-based solutions to global-scale problems ranging from global warming to global warring as the 2009 Massachusetts Relocalization Conference highlights dozens of grassroots initiatives that are emerging as alternatives to predatory economic systems that wreak havoc on our communities.
Organizations working on different aspects of relocalization will be showcasing their work, networking with each other, and illustrating the ongoing transformation of our economies, our livelihoods, our lifestyles, and our communities. Leading voices in the movements for social, environmental, and food justice will be pointing the way to resilient, sustainable communities.
Renowned author (Deep Economy) and environmental activist Bill McKibben, currently organizing the largest day of climate action in the planet's history for 350.org, will address the hall just six days before the unprecedented International Day of Climate Action on October 24th. According to McKibben, "Our current economies are changing the physical world in horrifying ways. It's our greatest challenge -- the only real question of our time -- to see whether we can transform those economies enough to prevent some damage and to help us cope with what we can't prevent."
Frances Moore Lappé, acclaimed author of, among many other works, the classic Diet for a Small Planet, will discuss the alternatives that are bubbling up from below. "When we realize that the social systems we have designed as humans are not serving our most basic needs, and that we have the power to re-design these systems to reflect our values, we can unleash a powerful wave of transformative action. People all across the planet are scrambling to harness this power to change the way we treat ourselves, each other, and all of creation, before the extraordinary web of life begins to unravel." “ Lappé suggests that some of the biggest problems we face, from global climate chaos to global hunger, “aren’t the real crisis,” since all that’s missing is the will to enact available solutions: “It is still possible for humanity to make a planet-wide turn toward life, but only under one condition: that we break free of a mental map — a set of reigning but misleading ideas — now robbing us of power.”
Mel King, the legendary, indefatigable community organizer who has put relocalization theory into practice at the state and local levels for over four decades, calls for a revival of community spirit as essential in regaining control of our lives. "People's spirits have been absolutely decimated by decades of war, corruption, and a brutal system of competitive individualism. When we look at each other, and get to know each other and enjoy one another, we can build the trust we need to begin to take care of each other. Only then can our needs truly be met, and that's the ultimate form of self-interest."
This year’s conference site was selected because Roxbury has advanced some of the most innovative, cross-cutting solutions in the nation, from the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative (a community land trust with the powers of eminent domain) to the urban farming and local food system innovations of The Food Project. According to District 7 City Councilor Chuck Turner, "the people of Roxbury have endured decades of racism, predation, and injustice. But we have fought back time and again, and have been leading the way on community-led alternatives to a broken system. This conference is about replacing this rotten system with new economic models that meet people's needs without creating gross inequality and destroying the planet."
The conference is being organized by the Massachusetts Coalition for Healthy Communities.
To arrange for press credentials, meet with conference organizers, and attend a press briefing with the principal speakers, contact Michael Horan, Media Relations, (michaelhoran [at] comcast.net)
This work is in the public domain