For many parents, our days are filled with putting food on the table, wrestling limbs into snow gear and checking in on school work. Often our busy lives prevent us from taking a leading role on the larger issues at play in the world in which we are raising our children. Many parents share a profound sense of despair in the face of climate change, yet feel powerless to act. By building “Mother Up!: Families Rise Up for Climate Action,” we at 350VT are engaging parents to take action in both their own communities and those most affected by the fossil fuel industry. We believe parents are powerful voices in advocating for the health and safety of our collective future. If you’re a parent, join us at an upcoming event or meet-up (listed below).
The name “Mother Up!” was inspired by Sun Dance Chief Rueben George, who, on behalf of his First Nation, was a co-coordinator of the fight against the Kinder Morgan proposed tar sands oil pipeline and tanker expansion. Chief Rueben’s mother, Amy George, a Tsleil-Waututh elder, told him to warrior up! In the fall of 2014, activists from Rising Tide Seattle were granted permission to adapt this phrase to “Mother Up!” and we have been granted permission to extend its use here in Vermont. Solidarity in action! As a climate justice movement, we must make sincere efforts to be inclusive to families and to actively seek out the voices of parents in all aspects of our work. “Mother Up!” is intended as a verb – to mother – as opposed to a noun. We believe that “mothering” the Earth by all people and genders is part of the solution. The subheading of “Families Rise Up for Climate Action” denotes our mission to be inclusive. Our vision is to build locally-based parent networks across Vermont that not only participate in climate justice work, but also become leaders in it. We will support these groups by providing leadership development, educational opportunities and logistical support. As a tool to facilitate one-on-one conversations with Vermont parents, we began with a survey that asked parents to reflect on their family structure, the challenges that they face as parents, and what climate change means to them. Nearly one hundred parents participated from Southern & Central Vermont, in addition to Chittenden County. The results of the survey were used to understand common concerns, chart existing parent networks within communities, and to identify potential parent leaders. Join the movement!
Montpelier– 3rd Fridays, from 5:30 – 7:30 pm, North Branch Nature Center
Contact: Géraldine Vatan, email@example.com
MU! Lobby Day at the State House
Thursday, February 14, 2019
Our 3rd annual Mother Up! Lobby Day on Thursday, February 14th was a tremendous success! Dozens of parents and children from across the state traveled to the State House and delivered Valentine’s (aka “Love Letters to Mother Earth”) to all 180 Vermont legislators calling for bold climate action now.
And mark your calendars for our 4th Annual Lobby Day on Thursday, February 6, 2020!
MU! Summer Trips
Our 2019 summer trip will be traveling to Healing Turtle Island, Friday July 12 – Monday July 15 at Nibezun Farm, Passadumkeag, Maine. This ceremony takes place on “sacred ground of Maine’s indigenous people for over 10,000 years, serving as a historical meeting place for Wabanaki tribes and an ancient camp used by their ancestors, the Red Paint People, for gathering red ochre.” Sherri Mitchell writes, “Our ancestors tell us that the Eastern Door is where we will gather to begin the healing of this land. It is here in the East where first contact was made between the Native peoples and the newcomers. It is here that the first blood was spilled between our people, and the long history of violence began. And, it is here on this same land that the healing must begin.” More information, including links to a donation page, here. More MU! details coming soon….
August 2016 In 2016, five families traveled to Northeastern Pennsylvania to see first-hand some of the effects of fracking. Joanna Macy’s description of the three dimensions “The Great Turning” applied to this trip – resisting fossil fuels, building new systems, and changing of consciousness. Read more about their story here.