WILPF BUSINESS MEETING
March 8, 7 p.m. at the Fresno Center for Nonviolence, 1584 N. Van Ness Ave. This meeting is open to all members.
WOMEN IN BLACK
March 7, noon to 1 p.m. at the Fresno County Courthouse (first Wednesday of each month; come on the month in which your birthday falls!). Wear black, bring a sign if you wish and stand in silence for peace.
ON KFCF 88.1 FM (listener-supported free speech radio for central California)
March 28 (4th Wednesday of each month). Jean Hays does outstanding interviews on subjects involving WILPF interests and activities on Stir It Up. Let Jean know if you have ideas for a program. Listen!
March 6 & 20, 8 p.m. (1st & 3rd Tuesdays). WILPF member Dr Jean Kennedy’s Keeping It Real.
Meetings on selected Mondays at 7 p.m. Call Ellie at 229-9807 for details.
CAROLYN RAFFENSPERGER TO SPEAK APRIL 21
Carolyn Raffensperger of the Science and Environmental Health Network will speak in the main Forum Hall at Fresno City College on the afternoon of April 21. Look for time of the presentation and other details in the April issue of the Community Alliance. Raffensperger’s appearance will be sponsored by WILPF, the Sierra Club and other community organizations.
Her topic will be the Precautionary Principle, which states, “When an activity raises threats of harm to human health or the environment, precautionary measures should be taken even if some cause and effect relationships are not fully established scientifically. In this context the proponent of an activity, rather than the public, should bear the burden of proof.” This idea has powerful implications when it comes to the stewardship of our environment, especially here in the San Joaquin Valley. As an environmental lawyer, Raffensperger specializes in the fundamental changes in law and policy necessary for the protection and restoration of public health and the environment. She has been a presenter at the Bioneers Conference. Don’t miss her presentation here on April 21!
KYLA MITCHELL TO WORK WITH AID AFRICA
Fresno native and recent UC Davis graduate Kyla Mitchell (WILPF member Gail Mitchell’s daughter) will be traveling to northern Uganda this April. She will spend five weeks as a volunteer working with Aid Africa to provide life-changing assistance to the Acholi people, a tribe terrorized by war and subjected to extreme living conditions. Among other efforts, Aid Africa distributes fuel-efficient stoves, supports a tree nursery for both fruit and fuel trees, and builds and repairs wells to provide clean water.
Kyla is using her savings from the last six months as well as personal donations to pay for the trip. She needs about $1800 more to cover the plane ticket, immunizations, and expenses while in Uganda. Tax-deductible donations are greatly appreciated and can be made out to: Aid Africa, 3916 Pennsylvania Ave., La Crescenta, CA 91214 or through their website at aidafrica.net. Please include a reference to Kyla Mitchell so that the funds will be available to her while she in Uganda. Also consider making a donation to Aid Africa in general or to one of its specific projects (stoves, wells, Pearls of Africa Orphanage, etc.). More information about Kyla and her plans with Aid Africa can be found at ugandatrip2012.weebly.com.
SUPPLIES FOR HOMELESS NEEDED
WILPF members are supporting a number of efforts to distribute food, firewood and other supplies to homeless people. Contact Jean Kennedy to donate canned food. Judy Hess is the contact person for the firewood brigade. Lynn and Maureen have distributed backpacks containing personal items as well as tarps, socks and gloves. They are in need of women’s personal products.
CENTRAL VALLEY COUNTER-RECRUITMENT COALITION;
VOLUNTEERS AND MONEY NEEDED
Volunteer counter-recruiters visit high school campuses monthly to talk with students, provide literature about the myths and realities of military service, alternatives to military service, funding college education, finding jobs, and peaceful ways to serve our country. Counter-recruiters have been visiting Fresno Unified School District high schools since May 2005, when Peace Fresno initiated the project. They are associated with the Central Valley Counter-Recruitment Coalition, which funds the work with donations from individuals and from member groups, of which WILPF is one. We need volunteers to help us do the counter-recruitment in local high schools. Our counter-recruiters make one visit a month at lunch time, usually 40 to 45 minutes. Contact Dan Yaseen if you are interested.
The major expense of the project is printing of flyers that we distribute to students. Checks should be payable to the Fresno Center for Nonviolence. Please write “CVCRC” in the memo line. Donations to the Central Valley Counter-Recruitment Coalition are not tax deductible. No amount is too small.
HULL HOUSE CLOSES
The abrupt closure of the Jane Addams Hull House in Chicago came as a shock to many WILPF members. Hull House, the best-known settlement house in the country, was co-founded in 1889 by Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr to provide social and educational opportunities for working people, especially immigrants. Addams and the Hull House staff lived with the people they served in order to understand and document their needs. Addams’ goal was to “aid in the solutions of life in a great city, to help our neighbors build responsible, self-sufficient lives for themselves and their families.”
On January 19, 2012, the Hull House organization announced that funding difficulties would result in closure this spring. Then, on January 27, Hull House laid off 300 employees and closed the doors. Reports indicate that 60,000 Chicago-area residents are left without essential services including housing assistance, job training, and domestic violence relief. Most former Hull House clients live below the poverty level; two-thirds are women.
In addition to her settlement house work, Jane Addams was powerful voice in the peace movement. She was a founding member and the first president of WILPF.
FROM THE BELOVED COMMUNITY COMMITTEE:
The World Courts of Women on Poverty in the U.S. will take place in Oakland May 10-13, 2012. A delegation from Fresno is forming now. Call Dr. Jean Kennedy at 559-270-1023. For more information see http://worldcourtsofwomen.wordpress.com or visit the visual call for action, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EUaWmj8iJOU