Several organizations are doing great work to fight inequality. We can support them with our time, energy, and money. We can also join forces with like-minded individuals to create our own organizations. But, we can’t sit back and wait for someone else to fix the problem. There is strength in numbers, and the more people we have working together, the more we can accomplish.
The first step is to educate ourselves and others about the issue of wealth inequality. We need to understand how the system is rigged in favor of the wealthy and how this affects us. We also need to understand our power and how we can use it to create change. The more people who understand the issues, the better.
When you think of community organizing, what comes to mind? If you’re like most people, you probably imagine groups of protesters rallying for a cause. While protesting can be an important form of community organizing, it’s only one small part of a much larger movement.
Community organizing can start with a single person and a handful of committed citizens from the local community. But, it can also grow to encompass whole regions or even the entire nation. Some notable examples of community organizing in the United States include The Poor People’s Campaign and ARISE.
The term “enlightened self-interest” is the idea that people will ultimately be better off if they act in their own self-interest, as long as their actions also benefit the greater good. In other words, it is not enough to simply look out for oneself; one must also consider how one’s actions will impact others.
The numerous divisions that exist in our society have been fostered over decades by those in power. To build wealth in the solidarity economy (a community wealth-building system that puts people over profits), we must first work to heal these divisions.
It is unfortunate that our most popular worldviews—the major religions, national identities, and political ideologies—cause us to divide ourselves into tribes and see others as a threat. If we want to achieve our full potential, we need to find ways to overcome that fear.
Too often, low-income neighborhoods and communities of color are left out of the conversation when it comes to planning and development. This has led to a lack of investment in these areas, which has in turn led to disinvestment and disarray. But there is hope.
Taking action might begin with a single person, but it can also benefit from the aid of a few dedicated community members. With the appropriate mindset and playbook, a core group of community members may apply the concepts of organizing and building community wealth.
To appreciate the opportunities that a solidarity economy offers, it is necessary to have a good understanding of the principles and values that underpin it. These elements include cooperation, solidarity, sustainability, and social and economic justice.
An essential guide to empowering our communities and building equitable societies.
Empowering Communities is a roadmap for reducing wealth inequality, empowering vulnerable members of society, and building equitable communities that put people over profits. With practical advice on organizing campaigns and initiatives around economic justice, readers can learn how to make a meaningful difference in their own communities.
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