Northeast Iowa Peace & Justice Center, Inc.
119 Winnebago, Decorah, IA 52101
“Practicing Peace, Pursuing Justice—through Research, Education, & Action.”
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Weekly Update: December 12, 2014
The Northeast Iowa Peace and Justice Center, a 501(c)(3) public charity, provides space for education and networking. We create initiatives to promote peace, human rights, social and environmental justice.
NOTES FROM THE COORDINATOR: This past Monday at the library discussion of Blessed are the Crazy, by Sarah Lund, participants were reminded that each of us is vulnerable to mental illness and that many struggle with it chronically. Compassion, inclusion, education, and proper care are the healing responses our society must provide to meet this challenge. NEIPJC will start to train qualified persons to facilitate classes and support groups in affiliation with NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) using a grant from the WMC Commemorative Fund. We recommend you read the short, very gripping family testimony by Sarah Lund. The library has several copies. Tell your friends and family, too. -Julie
NOTES FROM THE DESK: This Saturday is the Decorah “Black Lives Matter: Civil Rights Vigil” at noon on the courthouse steps. In these confusing and infuriating times; this is a good place to start. Come, lend your presence, bring your loved ones, and help us show that we are a community that cares and that believes that changes need to be made. Peace. -Erin
Christmas Gift Opportunity: What do you get that person who has everything? Consider making a donation to the NEIPJC in their name and they will receive a Christmas Card from the Center announcing their gift and detailing how this donation helps in the compassionate work of the Center. Contact Erin or Julie in the office for more information!
EVENTS THIS WEEK at NEIPJC and in the COMMUNITY
We have 3 tags left on our tree for children between the ages of 19 months and 13 years, from the Helping Services victims of domestic abuse program, with requests for things like art supplies, toys, and even winter clothing. Please come in during the coming week and help us fill these needs for these children. It is a great thing to do with the children in your own life. You can pick up a tag and then bring the new, unwrapped gift with its tag, back to the Center! Help make this holiday happy for a local child!
Household goods are needed for a new immigrant family in the area. Things that are being sought are 8 twin mattresses (springs are part of the beds) and 1 full or queen mattress set for the parents are needed. Dressers, shelving, and/or stacking crates or baskets to store clothing in. Contact Kathi Mitchell (firstname.lastname@example.org) for any large items, small items can be brought to the Center.
We currently only need 12 more helpers for our Crossroads Cookie Project. The goal is to let these students know that the wider community cares about them in hopes of building supportive relationships. Please contact the office to sign up!
TONIGHT: Dec. 12, 7:30pm, First United Methodist Fellowship Hall (Court Street across from the courthouse): Mass Immigration to the U.S. Southern Border. Many people in this country have been concerned about and interested in the situation of so many children and their accompanying adults coming from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador last July. Their circumstances differ in numerous ways from those of previous immigrants. Judy Kading is an Iowan who spent several weeks in Laredo, TX, volunteering with the Laredo Humanitarian Relief Team, responding with compassion to the influx of immigrants from Central America. Judy has agreed to speak about her experiences there and about the ongoing situation for those newcomers, some of whom have arrived in northeast Iowa to join relatives. The public is invited to hear Judy’s presentation & ask questions.
TOMORROW: Dec. 13, Noon, Winn County Courthouse: Black Lives Matter: Civil Rights Vigil In solidarity with the national civil rights march in Washington D.C. the same day, and to voice our strong support for change in policing practices and oversight (the Grand Jury process) we gather to petition the U.S. Attorney General and begin a letter writing campaign. Please join us at the Winneshiek County courthouse at 12:00 Sat. Dec. 13 and speak up for civil rights for ALL.
Dec. 15, 7pm, NEIPJC: “Experiences of the Border Lands: in stories and photos”: Southern Arizona’s border with Mexico is one of the most dangerous places on earth for migrants fleeing from violence and poverty to come to the U.S. In the last 15 years thousands of migrants’ bodies have been found in the Arizona desert. No one knows how many the desert will never give up.
Migrants face the “Wall”, a large police force, CBP (Customs and Border Patrol), the ruthlessness of “coyotes” and the Cartels as well as a 5-7 day hike through the brutal Sonoran desert to reach Tucson or 9 days to Phoenix.
The Unitarian Universalist Church in Tucson began a ministry of humanitarian aid to migrants in distress in the desert called “The Samaritans”. Four the last three years Edie and Steve Jacobsen have participated in desert searches, trips to a Mexican aid center, and vigils at the “Operation Streamline” kangaroo court.
Dec. 16, 5:30: NEIPJC Board Meeting
Dec. 17, noon, LGO: Anonymous, 12 Step Organizational Program
Dec. 17, 10am, NEIPJC: Our Wednesday morning event is sorting seeds for Seed Savers. Come and put together packets of seeds to donate to Herman’s Gardens.
Ongoing Monthly Meetings, NEIPJC:
Let’s Get Organized (LGO): 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of the month at noon.
Immigration Working Group: 2nd & 4th Wednesdays of the month at noon.
NEIPJC Board Meetings: 3rd Tuesday at 5:30pm
Overeaters Anonymous: Every Thursday at 6pm
Community Rights Alliance & PFLAG as announced
For a full list of our regular weekly and monthly meetings, please visit our website and view events on the calendar.
Office Space for Rent at 119 Winnebago St. available immediately: Suite 4: 2 rooms (120 sq. ft.), (76 sq. ft.), internet access, $200/month. Call (563) 382-5337 for inquiries.
We are a Retired Senior Volunteer Program site (RSVP). That means if you volunteer at our Center, you accrue volunteer hours in the RSVP program. We are currently seeking a volunteer for an hour once every other week to clean windows and vacuum. If you have another skill to share, please stop by M – F 10am – 3pm to discuss your ideas with us.
1000 Kids for Iowa is working to find safe homes in Iowa for child refugees from Central America. If you are interested in helping in any way from hosting a child to supporting services, please inquire. More information can be found at www.1000KidsforIowa.org.
Helping Services of Northeast Iowa — Volunteers Needed: Multiple opportunities that fit your comfort level are available. (563) 380-1361 for more information.
Quote of the week: “If there is to be any peace or reason, we have to create it in our own hearts and homes.” -Madeleine L’Engle, A Swiftly Tilting Planet
All donations to NEIPJC are tax deductible.