Rising xenophobia and racism, growing economic inequality, the global coronavirus pandemic and climate change are all having a devastating impact in Scotland and across the Globe. But there is powerful potential to address these challenges within the social justice movements that are emerging to meet this moment.
It’s common for groups fighting for change to get stuck in an unsustainable fire-fighting mode, lacking the long-term strategy or skills needed to navigate uncertainty. People burnout and dropout from our movements due to the precarity caused by capitalism, the painful replication of systemic oppression within social justice movements, and explosive conflicts which leave groups atomised before they can make an impact.
Effective social movements are strategic and focused, led by marginalised and directly affected communities, and capable of building collaboration across differences. They prioritise personal and collective care, relationships of solidarity and respect, as well as sustainable group cultures. They are persistent, structured, adaptable, creative, courageous and embody the values we are fighting for. We see movements win when people come together to organise around the issues that affect them, shift oppressive power relations, build alternatives, and transform themselves, their groups and the systems we live in.
We help organisers develop the skills and resources to organise their communities, plan strategically, build alliances, embed their values in practice and sustain momentum. By nurturing grassroots leadership and creating space to break out of reactive cycles, we catalyse organisers towards more effective, strategic and sustainable action, seeding active solidarity between campaigns across multiple movements.
We value the intrinsic genius of movements for social change and see our role as facilitating the knowledge sharing and creativity found within cultures of resistance. We are not leaders but pollinators.
Our work is one part of a larger ecology of movements for justice and we recognise the essential work done by other organisations that are either directly campaigning or enabling that work by building essential infrastructure. We prioritise collaboration and strive to grow and learn through dialogue and exchange, drawing wisdom from our past experiences, enacting our values today, and implementing our learning as we organise for tomorrow.