A Letter from Rajasvini Bhansali

December 24, 2018For Members

Nothing Is Impossible Because I Am Possible.

Hands Up United

In just five weeks since I began my new role, I am exhilarated and overjoyed beyond words for all the possibilities in our network.  Since its founding days, Solidaire Network’s members have been standing in solidarity with the most imaginative, transformative and necessary social movements of our times.  The movements we support are working to end mass incarceration, abolish police and ICE brutality, eliminate Islamophobia, and halt land grabs and displacement of poor and working class Black and Brown folks.

Our activist members and grassroots partners are experimenting with a variety of intersectional strategies- direct action, advocacy, cultural and electoral organizing, divesting and investing, working the land – all with the fundamental goal of restoring the leadership and power of those who yearn for real and lasting social change.  Black women, Indigenous youth, Muslim folks, queer, trans and gender nonconforming peoples, immigrants, low wage workers and working class people are leading the way for a new world order based not on extraction and exploitation but one where dignity, beauty and justice are rightfully ours.  They are creating innovative models for justice through food and water sovereignty, land rights, climate justice, cooperative economics.

Our work as progressive donors has only just begun.  Our work as comrades in a long and protracted struggle is only just emerging and I am looking forward to us centering our work in relationships of mutuality, learning and visioning together. Together we will embody humility and curiosity as we seek to ground ourselves in this historical moment.  As Solidaire’s Executive Director, I look forward to a process of learning, reflection, sense-making and to co-creating a new Theory of Liberation that propels us forward.  I see us growing not only in numbers but also in consciousness and congruent action.  I know together in 2019 we will continue to engage in inner work, learning exchanges, political education, solidarity practices and rigorous new forms of accountabilities to the social movements we stand with.  I believe in our network’s courage and our refusal to emulate unjust models; we recommit to the discipline it takes to manifest lasting transformation. I believe we will succeed.

I hear you grappling with contradictions and choosing to extend an open heart towards movement building.  I witness you challenging family systems, institutions, and the very fabric of wealth accumulation and distribution.  Your desire to change the narrative and the practice of traditional philanthropies has been widely felt, and you are centering your giving in what truly matters to frontline communities.  The depth and reach of your dedication to moving money to impacted communities cannot be understated. Thank you for trusting movement leaders and standing beside them as comrades.  The fact that Solidaire exists and is growing is itself a powerful indicator of the commitment and responsiveness you exhibit to social movements the world over.   

So, as we enter 2019, let us attempt to model the courage of our movement partners.   Let us find small and big ways to learn and take organized, visionary, collective action. Let us work through internal conflicts and disconnections and into new ways of being together. Let us also relinquish exceptionalism and truly learn to partner and collaborate with others in our ecosystem.  Finally, let us recommit to love and liberation in 2019.

I want to hear from you and to have a cozy conversation over tea or a cocktail.  I would love to take a hike or to crash on your couch when I’m in your town.  Please feel welcomed to write, call, or text me.  I am counting on you in this next phase of the Solidaire journey and am honored to journey on this path with all of you.

 

Yours in solidarity & struggle,

Rajasvini Bhansali, Executive Director

I ask you to make a year-end gift to Solidaire, to help us begin the new year with the strongest foundation possible. Mail your check today, or give via credit card. We will follow up with you soon to process your payment.

Checks should be made payable to 
“Tides Center/Solidaire Network.”

Please mail your checks to:
Tides Center
P.O. Box 29907
San Francisco, CA 94129