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CHMA Weekly Updates: September 29, 2020

NOTE: An earlier version of this week's edition was sent earlier with faulty links. Apologies for the error—we have corrected it!

Welcome to the CHMA Newsletter! This is a space for updates about what’s been going on, what’s coming up, and how you can get involved with Crown Heights Mutual Aid.

If you’re receiving this newsletter because you made a donation to CHMA, thank you! You are helping make it possible for CHMA to keep doing what we do. 

If you have recently joined CHMA, welcome! We hope you can get involved in a way you enjoy. That’s one of the things that puts the “mutual” in “mutual aid!” Browse through our Slack channels to find what interests you, and you can get plugged in through this Working Groups document. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, feel free to get it started!


This Week’s Announcements

Crown Heights Mutual Aid has officially launched our fundraising auction! You can bid on artwork, literature, food and wine, and other items and services from local businesses and our amazingly talented crew of CHMA volunteers. All donations will go towards our grocery deliveries and funding partner organizations.

The Accountability & Reconciliation Working Group is finalizing the selection process for the first Accountability & Reconciliation Collective! We are meeting with each WG to explain the purpose of the ARC, answer questions about participation, and inform everyone on the selection process before we tap specific individuals. We’re excited to help facilitate an ongoing, sustainable accountability process for CHMA. Please hop in the #wg_accountability_reconciliation Slack channel if you’re interested or have questions! For an extended statement on this new process, read on to the Working Groups Updates below. 

We’ve extended our fundraiser on ioby! While we raised a good amount of money to help get groceries to our neighbors, we haven’t reached our $100,000 goal just yet, so we’ve extended our fundraiser through October. You can donate through this page using a credit or debit card, and the donation is tax-deductible. Feel free to share on Instagram and Twitter as well!


Working Group Updates 

ACCOUNTABILITY & RECONCILIATION: From the Working Group leads, a statement on our new Accountability process: “We have come together to create a liberating, creative and courageous space in which to take principled action. Direct Action and Mutual Aid build People Power – but only when they manifest in an accountable way. Recently, we came together to affirm: Participating in CHMA means a commitment to accountability on the part of all. To that end, CHMA just passed its first Accountability and Reconciliation proposal. This means that beyond commitment to personal and collective accountability, we commit to being a part of a concrete accountability structure that we call ARC: the Accountability and Reconciliation Collective. We will all take turns helping each other listen to grievances, document them, and learn how to address them.” 

FINANCE: CHMA’s online auction kicked off on Friday, with all proceeds going towards getting groceries to our neighbors. We have some very exciting stuff up for auction, so have a peek! If nothing in the auction interests you, but you still want to contribute, please make a donation through our ioby fundraising page, or sign up to be a monthly donor here! So far we have raised $72K through our ioby page, and we’ve used $25K of that to pay for groceries for our neighbors in Crown Heights. But the work continues—and we need to ensure that we have a reliable source of funding. Thank you so much for your continued support!

PARTNERSHIPS: We are working on a form for our community partners to give us feedback, as well as developing a community call about partnerships. 

HOUSING: Members of our Housing WG are promoting direct actions and phone banking leading up to October 1, when NYC’s eviction moratorium ends. We need a new law to extend it! We are also encouraging members to request their rent history as a tool to organize with neighbors, and we continue to help grow Brooklyn Eviction Defense, a grassroots coalition of tenants unions across the borough that provides immediate assistance to people facing landlord abuse. You can look up your rent history at

INTAKE: Join us for intake banking parties every other week on Tuesdays! Come make calls to neighbors together as a team.

EDUCATION: The Education Working Group is participating in the Freedom Winter reading and discussion series this fall! It's an education project organized by scholars and activists that focus on ending mass incarceration and investigating the ties between racism and American capitalism. 

COMMUNICATIONS: We recently welcomed three new working group leads—Lee Hubilla, Kate Merlie, and Alyssa Greenberg—and our top priority right now is working to support the auction via our social media platforms. 


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