WILPF-Madison Projects and Updates!

By Rebecca Neal, Intern at WILPF Madison, WI Branch

This past year, WILPF-Madison has sponsored and participated in numerous events promoting the peace and freedom of our local communities, as well as our sisters and fellow-activists globally.  We’ve also kick-started new initiatives to bring community activists together.  Very recently, we moved our website to Wordpress, to discuss and share opinions, knowledge, and news more effectively.  We hope that this will be a more accessible and vibrant portal through which all our members and followers can be more informed, empowered, and impactful participants in our communities.

A few things we’ve been up to:

WILPF-Madison Peace & Justice Book Circle

Each month, we meet at the Goodman South Public Library to discuss the insights and impacts of a book and how they shed light on the peace and freedom of our world, our communities, and our fellow women. Contact Susan Freiss at freisssusan@gmail.com for more details.

Jane Addams Book Award Selection

Last winter, Susan Freiss, longtime member of the Jane Addams Children's Book Award Selection Committee, presented a slideshow about Jane Addams in upper elementary students’ classrooms.  Her guiding question was, “What kind of books would Jane want children to read or have read to them?”  

Through the work of a network of passionate teachers and librarians in the Madison, Wisconsin area, over 20 classrooms of students were exposed to the Jane Addams Children's Book Award process and contributed responses to contending titles.  Six classes (2 in NYC and 4 in Wisconsin) communicated their responses via an online blog conversation.  The students in these classes also culminated a literacy unit of study on social justice and Jane Addams with persuasive essays addressed to the selection committee supporting their suggestion for a winning title.  

And now that it is winter again, the process is starting up once more with a provocative set of contenders! Look for award announcements in April 2018.

Madison Peace Vigils

Every Monday on the Madison Capitol Square, activists host a vigil protesting militarization and promoting peaceful negotiation processes.  All (+banners and signs) are welcome!

Contact mbspeace1@charter.net for more details.

Gather the Women

One of our newer initiatives is a quarterly breakfast bringing women activists together to connect and learn from one another about a certain theme.  For each breakfast, we invite a local speaker to share their knowledge and work on the theme. 

Our most recent breakfast in November 2017 featured Juliee de la Terre of the Sacred Water Sacred Land Institute in western Wisconsin.  Juliee shared her insights on the theme, “Water is Life.”

Look for our next event in February!  Contact Karen Pope at kosbornepope@gmail.com

Collaboration with Other Local Groups

This Fall, we worked with the Madison-Arcatao Sister City Project on an event hosting Cintia Gonzalez and Zulma Tobar from El Salvador, Madison’s Rebecca Kemble (Alder 18th District), and Prof. Al Gedicks (Prof. at UW-Eau Claire) in a panel discussion about anti-mining efforts and the theme “Water is Life,” as it is embodied in El Salvador.  This was followed by a workshop titled “Community Organizing that Leads to National Change,” hosted by Cintia and Zulma about their work in El Salvador.

Likewise, we co-sponsored an event with the Colombia Support Network, where Carol Rojas, of Medellín, Colombia, gave a presentation and popular education workshop about the feminist resistance in Colombia.

WILPF-Madison’s First Intern

WILPF-Madison welcomed its first intern, Rebecca Neal, to work from Fall 2017 through Summer 2018.  Duties include:  transferring the website to a new platform, updating pages, planning events, creating local publicity materials for WILPF-Madison, and helping to develop a framework for future interns as they become a regular and integral piece of our local chapter.

Contact me at a.rebeccaneal@gmail.com



Alert/Update Category: