Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom – March 2021

INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY: CELEBRATE WITH A GREAT WEBINAR

Cuban Women on the Frontline: Feminist Solidarity in the Time of Pandemic

March 7 at 2 p.m. To register, visit www.us-cubanormalization.org/viva-cuba/. Webinar co-sponsored by WILPF, the U.S. Women and Cuba Collaboration and the U.S.-Cuba-Canada Normalization Group, Code Pink and more.

Kathryn Hall-Trujillo. Photo courtesy of Ashoka.org

Celebrate International Women’s Day and the  advancement of the women’s rights agenda in Cuba along with Cuban women’s contributions to the fight against COVID-19.

  • How the pandemic has affected women globally, including in the United States and Cuba
  • Solutions and steps you can take as part of these solutions
  • A quick close-up of the Beijing Platform for Advancing Women’s Rights: 25th anniversary

The featured speakers are Ambassador Lianys Torres Rivera, the first woman Cuban ambassador to the United States, and Kathryn Hall-Trujillo, founder of the Birthing Project USA and adjunct faculty at the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science Urban Public Health Program.

ARTS, COMMUNITY, HEALTH AND EDUCATION

COVID-19 La Obra is a play written and directed by Teatro Inmigrante director Agustín Lira and co-director Patricia Wells-Solorzano, also a Fresno WILPF member. Health and pandemic information is presented in Spanish, English and Mixteco in a play about a small family—two young brothers and their mom.

This family has managed to stay healthy despite the ever-present virus due to the vigilance and guidance of the mother, who works in the fields and in the packing sheds.

One day, the eldest brother makes a terrible mistake that threatens everyone’s life. Can the family members overcome the deadly grip of COVID-19 or will they fall victim to the disease too? 

Angel (left) and Ernesto Vasquez (right) in COVID-19 La Obra, a new play and video. Photo by Patricia Wells Solorzano

This project is sponsored by the California Arts Council Artists in Communities grant program, the California Endowment S.E.G., the WILPF Fresno Branch and donations.

Funds are needed to film the play. This is an incredibly valuable project, and no one else is doing anything similar.

Please join WILPF Fresno in contributing to this project. Teatro de la Tierra is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization dedicated to the preservation and advancement of art and culture, and so much more. Check them out at their website (www.teatrotierraonline.org), and you will be amazed at their long-term dedication to the community. We would really appreciate your help. Contact them at 559-485-8558 or teatrodelatierrapresente@gmail.com or via mail at P.O. Box 17135, Fresno CA 93744.

IN CELEBRATION OF WATER DAY

WILPF Fresno presents Jean Hays and Sandra Iyall on the March 24 Stir It Up! at 3 p.m. on KFCF 88.1 FM for a reading and discussion of a wonderful new book in celebration of Water Day. We Are Water Protectors is the winner of the Jane Addams Peace Association Children’s Book Award 2021 for Younger Children.

We Are Water Protectors is authored by Carole Lindstrom of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwe and illustrated by a Tlingit artist, Michaela Goade, who is an enrolled member of the Tlingit and Haida Indian tribes of Alaska. Goade’s Tlingit name is Sheit.een, and she is of the Kiks.ádi Clan (Raven/Frog) from Sheet’ká.

We Are Water Protectors empowers the reader to stand up for environmental justice and one of the most important elements for our survival—water. The story, with its foundation taken from the 2016 Standing Rock protests in the Dakotas, takes place on Indigenous land and reminds us that “we are stewards of the Earth and that together we must fight to protect our planet’s sacred water.”

Fighting against the arrival of an oil pipeline, the female main character, literally and metaphorically, stands up against the evil “black snake” calling on us all to embrace that “we are water protectors. WE STAND.” Goade, through vibrant watercolors, communicates the clear and imminent necessity of communities standing together in solidarity for our world.

Young readers are called to respond passionately by joining the stand, pledging to become water protectors and earth stewards.

The Jane Addams Children’s Book Award annually recognizes children’s books of literary and aesthetic excellence that effectively engage children in thinking about peace, social justice, global community and equity for all people. A national committee of members with a passion for and expertise in children’s literature and social justice make the choices each year.

Iyall, a past president of WILPF and an enrolled member of the Cowlitz tribe, has made a generous donation of We Are Water Protectors. The six copies will be given to Fresno area schools and libraries.

—Cheryl Caldera

WHO ARE WOMEN IN BLACK?

Women in Black is a worldwide network of women committed to peace with justice and actively opposed to injustice, war, militarism and other forms of violence. As women experiencing these things in different ways in different regions of the world, we support each other’s movements. An important focus is challenging the militarist policies of our own governments. Not an organization, but rather a means of communicating and a formula for action.

Nancy Godwin and Sue Kern represent WILPF and Women in Black. Photo by Nancy Godwin

In Fresno, Women in Black usually gathers the first Wednesday of each month at noon at the Fresno County Courthouse. Wear black, bring a sign if you wish and stand in silence for peace.

For more information, contact Teresa at taca_03@ymail.com.

On Feb. 3, Sue Kern, Janet Capella, Nancy Godwin and Bev Fitzpatrick were there for us.

Janet Capella, Sue Kern and Bev Fitzpatrick standing for peace. Photo by Nancy Godwin

As Black History Month joins Women’s History Month, a thought from an early WILPF African American woman peace activist: “You can talk about permanent peace until doomsday, but there can be no permanent peace until the dark races are given a square deal.

—Mary Church Terrell, U.S. Section Delegate to the 2nd International WILPF Congress held in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1919

The WILPF Page is usually compiled and edited by Leni Villagomez Reeves (lenivreeves@gmail.com).


WILPF  MEETING
March 11, 7 p.m., online. Watch your e-mail for an announcement and link or call-in number. For more info, contact Teresa or Leni.

STIR IT UP–WILPF KFCF 88.1 FM
March 24, 3 p.m. (4th Wednesday of each month). Jean Hays does outstanding interviews on subjects involving WILPF interests and activities.

MEMBERSHIP
Send dues to WILPF Fresno, P.O. Box 5114, Fresno, CA 93755.

Send questions and information updates to Evonne Waldo at evonnewaldo@yahoo.com.

WILPF membership is $35/year. Contact Evonne about the low-income rate, sponsored by our contributions above the $35 that goes to the national organization.

COMMITTEES—STILL AT WORK
Though we cannot meet in person.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE
Contact Jean Hays at skyhorse3593@sbcglobal.net.

LIBRARY COMMITTEE
Contact Ann Carruthers at acarruthers@earthlink.net or Cheryl Caldera at grammy44cac@gmail.com.

EARTH DEMOCRACY
Contact Jean Hays at skyhorse3593@sbcglobal.net.

CUBA AND THE BOLIVARIAN ALLIANCE
Contact Leni at lenivreeves@gmail.com.

ADVANCING HUMAN RIGHTS/WINGS
Contact Bev Fitzpatrick at dfitzpatrick29@comcast.net.

RAGING GRANNIES
Contact Evonne Waldo at evonnewado@yahoo.com.

ANTI-RACISM
Contact Jean Kennedy at drjeankennedy@yahoo.com. Zoom discussion held the last Sunday of each month at 6.30 p.m. To join, RSVP with your e-mail address for the Zoom link to drjeankennedy@yahoo.com or text 559-270-1023.

WOMEN IN BLACK
On hiatus.

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  • The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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