GCO - Community Organizing Engagement
At its core, GCO is about the integration of theory and practice in community organizing. GCO is structured to bring these elements together, through class work and through collaboration with community organizations engaged in struggles for social justice.
In the weekly class space, facilitators will support students in familiarizing themselves with the tools and strategies used in relationship-based organizing - through complex readings, engaging discussions, and reflective writing.
In addition, students will be split into small groups and assigned to work (remotely) with one of our community partner organizations for most of the semester. We collaborate with community organizers as co-educators and they bring years of experience and dedication to building people power to fight justice in their communities. Students will spend approximately 3.5 hours a week working with their community partner, taking part in activities like: community meetings, workshops, outreach and more.
As we have seen this year - through uprisings for racial justice, and mobilizations to confront white supremacy and fascism - many of our communities are fighting for their lives. The stakes are as high as they have ever been, and the challenge of the pandemic has made their work harder but even more necessary.
Some of our potential community partner organizations for Grassroots Community Organizing 2021 include:
Massachusetts Against Solitary Confinement
City Life/Vida Urbana
Springfield No One Leaves
Pioneer Valley Project
Neighbor 2 Neighbor
Alternatives for Community and Environment