Links from Social Justice Camp DC’s Ignite Session tonight

Big thanks to JR Russ (@AWayofLife0) for this post on his Facebook page (very impressed w/ how quick you got this up JR!)

Be sure to check out some of JR’s projects:

Artists’ Bloc’sSocial Justice Program
DC Performing Arts League – Facebook Page

If anyone is interested in meeting JR, he’s coming to camp tomorrow and is a very cool dude.

From JR’s Facebook Page:

First note of 2010, and I can’t think of a better way to start of the year. Completely invigorated by the possibilities, with regards to the opportunity for collaboration across sectors with regards to (i know it sounds cheesy) making a difference in the world, and utilizing social media tools to do so.

Now while there were some which addressed issues I might be more involved with than others, in the interest of objectivity, I wanted to post them all, as I’m sure for each site, there are probably at least a handful of FB friends I’m connected to who would want to know more. Some might be more generally supported than others, and some might be controversial depending on personal beliefs. Whatever the case may be, this note is NOT the place to start a debate or conversation about it. If you see something you wouldn’t support, then don’t. Don’t comment on this note and make it political.

However if you were there and you saw these people speak, then whether your beliefs aligned with an organization/cause or not, you would’ve seen the passion these people had in fulfilling the needs of various communities, needs which weren’t being met any other way. Seeing that kind of dedication and drive over the course of the evening, and the grass-roots action combined with real-world change…well it was beautiful and inspiring.

If tonight is any indication, the Social Justice Camp DC unconference tomorrow is going to be exciting:-)

So just wanted to share the links I took down from tonight.

D.C. LEARNs – Washington D.C.’s Literacy Coalition

D.C. LEARNs is Washington’s literacy coalition. We are working together with adult, child, and family literacy programs here in the District to raise public awareness of literacy issues, recruit volunteers, provide outreach to new learners, and provide the materials, research, training, and technical assistance needed to raise the quality of literacy services available to D.C. residents.

Ben Merrion

I provide information and referral services to adult learners and adult education programs, develop reading and critical thinking workshops for the ALRC, recruit volunteers for adult literacy programs, and coordinate outreach events in various DC communities. I am currently using social media including Facebook, Twitter, and a DC Literacy blog to help heighten the need to support adult education programs in DC.

STREATS – Striving To Reach Educate And Transform Society’s views on homelessness

In an unprecedented manner STREATS Television Strives to Reach Educate and Transform Society’s views on homelessness by Making Sense…of Life on the Streets. STREATS utilizes homeless and formerly homeless individuals to film, direct, host, commentate, and act out different aspects of homelessness in a comical, sarcastic, yet serious way.

inforUm – A nationwide dialogue about housing, poverty and homelessness

We bring together social advocates, politicians and community members from throughout the United States to encourage nationwide dialogue about these crucial issues. By uniting people with differing opinions, coming from different regions and walks of life, we provide a platform for the creation of innovative new strategies to combat homelessness across the country.

Regina Holliday’s Medical Advocacy Blog

Regina Holliday is a DC-based medical rights advocate. She is currently at work on a series of murals depicting the need for clarity and transparency in medical records. Her background is in special ed advocacy, and she is bringing her experience in that field to the field of patients’ rights.

The Hub [Hub is a global network and Hub DC is in the creation phase]

We’re a social enterprise with the ambition to inspire and support imaginative and enterprising initiatives for a better world. The Hub is a global community of people from every profession, background and culture working at ‘new frontiers’ to tackle the world’s most pressing social, cultural and environmental challenges.

Save Our Safety Net

In this time of economic crisis, support for the poor is essential to the health of our entire community. We need our leaders to take a more balanced approach to balancing the budget. That means fortifying support for our safety net, rather than targeting it first for cuts. And it means raising revenues — while avoiding tax increases that fall on those who can least afford it. With responsible leadership, we will protect the most vulnerable and invest in our economic future. Save our Safety Net!

DC Food For All

The DC Food For All is a forum for eaters and advocates, growers and wonks. It’s about shelves and menus, gardens and bloggers, working to bring healthy, sustainable and affordable food to all. We’re here to talk about the ways that DC residents get food, and the ways they eat it. Those ways are changing. We can taste some of the differences in our communities. In some of our neighborhoods we see new markets opening at a rapid pace; in others, it’s hard to find fresh produce for sale anywhere.

DC Food Finder – An Interactive Map of Food Sources in DC

The DC Food Finder will increase awareness of existing food resources in the city and ensure that residents can stretch their food dollar as far as possible to get through a tough time.

Faith Act Fellow: Randa

For this Fellowship, she will be relocating to Washington, D.C. to be hosted by the NGO Malaria No More, which she couldn’t be more excited about. Randa is inspired by her Muslim faith to serves others, and loves to smile, because in Islam, even a smile is considered charity. She is passionate about working towards achieving the MDG’s. Before this program, Randa co-founded Maded, an organization dedicated to providing empowerment to those who have been in serious physical accidents to help them re-gain quality in their lives, and is currently working on a project focused on global citizenship called “LiveOneWorld.”

The Grassroot Project

The Grassroot Project serves to educate at-risk youth from Washington D.C. about HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention by utilizing Division I “student-athlete” role models. Our partnership with MetroTeen Aids has allowed us to test our curriculum with staff and peer educators in order to adapt a curriculum that has been proven to be successful in countries all over the world. Our coaches are trained with this material and take it to the classrooms in D.C. where youth are engaged with interactive learning techniques that form a strong foundation for their knowledge of HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention.

Out The Boat Ministries, Inc.

Using a housing first model, the mission of Out The Boat Ministries, Inc. (OTB Ministries, Inc.) is to provide homes and healing to youth ages 12-24 and their families via housing, supportive relationships, and a network of education, social services, mental health, and job skills providers.

Lost on Route 66

Coming from the Government 2.0 and Health 2.0 communities, I wasn’t really sure what Social Justice was. After a few conversations and web surfing, I realized it was a question I would have to answer for myself. In studying foreign languages, I’ve found that one tends to learn more about one’s own culture when seen through the lens of another. So to decipher the meaning of Social Justice, I turned to the characters of the Japanese language. Each character, a complex pictograph, tells a story. I wanted to see what story the characters for Social Justice would tell.

DCAF – The DC Abortion Fund

The DC Abortion Fund (DCAF) is an all-volunteer, non-profit organization that makes grants and no-interest loans to DC regional women who cannot afford the full cost of an abortion. DCAF affirms women as decision-makers. When women choose to have an abortion, they face a multitude of state and national restrictions designed to deny their access to it. These restrictions disproportionately affect low-income women. We hope to make “choice” a reality because we believe that a woman’s right to healthcare should not depend on her wallet.


The RealTalk Reps are those folks that are ready and willing to give you the real talk you need to be safe in your relationships. The Reps are Peer Educators trained by Metro TeenAIDS with CORRECT and up-to-date information. We’re out doing street outreach with condoms and testing referral cards so you can know ya status. Throw all kinds of events, from Basketball tournaments, to DJ parties at recreation centers, to having go-go bands rockin at back to school jams. For more info on Events coming up soon, hit up the events section on the page, and text “Realtalk” to 61827.

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