Celebrations and Transitions

Hi everyone. We wish you all a Happy Pride Month! We celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community and their legacy of activism to make it safe for people to love who they love and to express their whole selves. At the start of this summer season, it may feel like time of transition; some of us are finishing the school year, some of us are trying things again for the first time since the pandemic started, and some of us are exploring how we can be in community together as things open up more. We want to share with you some celebrations, invitations, and updates.  

Name Change Big changes are happening this summer! We have the staff support and board approval to change the name of the Timebank.  Our motivation to change the name comes from a desire to be more inclusive and more intentionally pro-Black. We see these changes as being in alignment with the values of the organization when you become members. We want to take all the best aspects of timebanking forward as we shift our model to more cooperative model of skill-sharing and resource exchange.  We’re looking at the name Flywheel Co-op. A flywheel’s function in an engine is to redistribute energy and power in a sustainable way. That concept is a part of our thinking in bringing more marginalized communities into the work of the timebank. For the second part of the name, co-op structures are powerful tools for transforming economic inequality. We want to invest in kinds of focus and activity that identify and address most urgent needs in the community. These activities may include building partnerships with Black-led organizations, broadening open-minded and consistent communication, developing community-based responses when appropriate, and amplifying a collective voice. If you’re interested in learning more about the role of co-ops in abolition work, check out this resource.  This moment of change is an opportunity for all of us in the Timebank membership to re-engage and revitalize ourselves in this community. We invite you into the process and want to hear your voice. We will be doing a day-long staff retreat next week. As we meet and confer about our new direction, we want to take your ideas into retreat with us. We have two questions that you can contemplate and let us know what your input is. Here is the survey where you can share your thoughts: https://forms.gle/J4q2YCZazCRskF679 

Open House: Thanks/Highlights Thank you to everyone who joined us for the Open House on May 22. We lucked out with some beautiful sunny weather. It was an inspiring moment of togetherness and a moment to envision how we want to show up as a community. We heard great speeches from youth from the R Justice League Ambassador program at La Follette High School, members of Teaching Assistants Association participating in their Community Lab for Intentional Practice, members of 100 Strong, and Milestone Democratic School. For those of you who missed the Open House and were not able to put your name on the project sign-up sheet, please email [email protected] and say whether you would like Info on TAN, Info on 100 Strong, Info on Abolitionist Restorative Justice. You can also check out some photos from the event on the Dane County Timebank Facebook page! 

Ambassadors Program As we wrapped up a year filled with many different hurdles and lots of hurt, we ended on a positive note with our work with La Follette high. Our ambassadors successfully completed their 6 week training to prepare them for their major role within the school. They also joined us at our open house to share out some of their experiences and how it has helped them within their personal lives. They are currently planning a celebration for themselves and other youth within the community for July 31st.  

As we know this work takes time, and we have come a long way but we have much further to go! La Follette is building a new pavilion also to allow further space for restorative Justice work. Our professional development time and training we provided for the staff gave us a great start for relationship building, as well as reconnecting with the students in school in person after COVID-19. We have been building many connections to build bridges between the school culture, the students, the staff, as well as the parents and community. We also look forward to continuing our super parent groups with parents of LHS students and affinity groups for our youth; Creating safe and Inclusive spaces and building ongoing connections to bring our community together. 

Letter Writing The Transformative Action Network and 100 Strong invite you to join us for monthly letter writing gatherings in response to violence against Black individuals in our communities. Each month, participants will be provided templates, time, and space to develop their letter to send to those that must be held accountable to the harm they have caused Black people. This is an ongoing space that will support all in turning thoughts and feelings into actions. 
Please join us on Tuesday, June 29th from 6:30 – 7:30pm CST on Zoom for our first monthly letter writing gathering. You can RSVP at tinyurl.com/100strongletterwriting 

Transportation Project The Timebank Transportation project is recruiting new drivers to help people get to medical appointments, employment, grocery stores and food pantries, and other essential services. We are also looking for people to help with tasks relating to outreach. If you are interested in participating, please email [email protected] for more information.  
Thank you for your continued investment in transformative community work and for coming along with us through all these changes. Another change to keep on your radar is our search for a new office space, as we have outgrown our office at the Social Justice Center. We are looking for a space that can function as a hub for our day-to-day office needs as well as for hosting community events and activities. Some things we are prioritizing in the space are accessibility for all, an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere for youth, and access to a kitchen. We are open to individual space or shared space with other likeminded and anti-racist groups. Have ideas? Let us know about them at [email protected]! And as always, stay tuned to our website and social media for more news, updates, and opportunities.

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Flywheel skill share