The 99% Spring Is Here!

Posted April 5, 2012 in Blog, Featured, Redwood City, Social Action, Story

Redwood City CA Resilience Circle Sponsors 99% Spring Training

Written by Thomas Atwood
Photos by Candance Anderson

Candace Anderson (left) leads a breakout session at the San Francisco "Train the Trainers" event.

Tens of thousands of Americans will come together during the week of April 9-15 as part of The 99% Spring campaign. We will share stories about the economy, learn the history of nonviolent direct action, and connect with local campaigns to bring about change.

The resilience circle at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Redwood City voted unanimously to endorse The 99% Spring and host a training at the church. Recognizing that the Resilience Circle Network and the Institute for Policy Studies are coalition partners of the 99% Spring campaign, five members signed up for a “Train the Trainers” event in San Francisco on March 24 and 25: Candace Anderson, Thomas Atwood, Aaron Castle, Debbie Mytels, and Veronica Palmer. A total of 1,285 people attended similar trainings across the US on the same weekend.

Thomas Atwood and Debbie Mytels (center) review a story telling segment of the curriculum.

As a result, more than 900 trainings are now scheduled nationwide, and the resilience circle will host two of them. If you live near the San Francisco Peninsula, you can register here to join us in Redwood City for a full day of training on Saturday, April 14.

Veronica Palmer (right) visualizes her ideal community as part of a group exercise.

The rallying cry of “We are the 99%!” is the unifying theme of the training, which seeks to identify and embrace both our diversity and common ground. Resilience circle members will easily relate to the story sharing exercises at the heart of the segment, “What Happened to Our Economy?”

The remaining four sections of the training combine readings, group exercises, case studies, and role plays to help participants learn about the history and effectiveness of nonviolent direct action. The well-crafted curriculum moves from the general to the specific, the abstract to the personal, as the subgroups wrestle with what an ideal community would look like, and what it will take to create it.

Aaron Castle seems pleased to learn that we're ready to go into action!

After learning about nonviolence agreements and role playing a hypothetical action, participants have the opportunity to connect with actions in their own community. Members of Occupy Redwood City will join us on April 14 to share actions that they take on a regular basis, including bank marches, foreclosure rallies, and public testimony.

Get Involved! To find a 99% Spring training near you, click here.