Since the launch of our Racial Justice Toolkit this past spring, we’ve posted several stories about racial justice work from the perspectives of some of our favorite Cleveland-based activists. Why Cleveland? Well…
- ioby has had an on-the-ground presence in the city since March 2016 (shout-out to our Cleveland Action Strategist, Indigo Bishop).
- Cleveland is home to some truly inspiring projects, like a renovation of the ATNSC Center for Healing & Creative Leadership; pop-up demos for Ujima Refresh juices; and a home for Foster Share. Very recently, Samaria Rice, the mother of Tamir Rice, the 12-year-old boy killed by Cleveland police in 2014, completed an ioby campaign called Building Tamir’s Legacy, which funded a Sweet Sixteen party for Tamir and will help to open The Tamir Rice Afrocentric Center in 2019. It exceeded its fundraising goal by over $2,000.
- Cleveland has long struggled with racial inequality, but it has also forged a robust racial justice movement. Today’s organizers are drawing from the hard-won victories of their predecessors—from John Patterson Green, the first Black Clevelander to hold elected office in the late 19th century, to the founders of the city’s Community Relations Board in the 1940s—to build a movement that gets stronger every year.
Last month, ioby hosted the webinar “Crowdfunding for Racial Justice,” which featured three outstanding Cleveland-based ioby leaders doing important work for racial equity right in their neighborhoods. They each shared how they’re creating community-based solutions around racial justice; how they got started, built support, and overcame challenges; and how crowdfunding is helping their grassroots projects grow. Indigo also explained more about how ioby can provide support for social justice changemaking, in Cleveland and nationwide.
Activist artist Amanda King spoke about her project Shooting Without Bullets, a youth photography exhibition. Christin Farmer, founder of Birthing Beautiful Communities, spoke about her project The Mothership Connection, which provides sustainable transportation to expectant mothers to and from prenatal classes and medical appointments. Renaissance woman Leah Lewis spoke about her project The X’s and O’s of Race/ism, a documentary series that explores race and its implications.
Of course, there’s much more racial justice work going on in Cleveland, but we think these remarkable leaders and initiatives are stellar examples of what’s possible. If you feel inspired by their stories and want to start a racial justice project where you live, tell us your idea! We want to help.
- ioby’s Racial Justice Toolkit is a collection of videos, interviews, advice, and resources drawn from the shared experiences of six Cleveland-based racial justice organizers, designed to help anyone take action for equity where they live.
- Our blog posts “Meet the ioby leaders healing Cleveland’s communities through racial justice work” and “Six racial justice organizers real talk about burnout” highlight key insights from the toolkit’s cohort.
- In the past two years and change, ioby has trained over 1,300 Clevelanders to plan, fund, and build positive change in neighborhoods across their city. Together, these leaders have raised nearly $200,000 in small donations to make Cleveland neighborhoods safer, greener, more livable, and more fun. Read more about the awesome projects, resources, and other opportunities Cleveland’s got going right now.