FUREE Organizers Sharpen Their Skills with SOUL

FUREE staff participated in the most recent series of SOUL (School of Unity and Liberation) trainings for organizers and activists.

We learned what it truly means to practice popular education theory, how to maximize our effectiveness in the communities we work in, as well as gained lifelong connections to amazing folks across the country!  We’re hoping to send some of our member-leaders in the near future!

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Mission

SOUL is a school to build a movement.

SOUL is working to lay the groundwork for a strong social justice movement by supporting the development of a new generation of organizers rooted in a systemic change analysis -especially people of color, young women, queer and transgender youth and low-income people. We believe that – in order for organizers to build an effective movement for fundamental social change – they need support to develop the nuts-and-bolts organizing skills they need to mobilize their communities and to deepen their political analysis and their visions for fundamental social change. SOUL helps to build the capacity of organizers and leaders of grassroots organizations to win systemic change.

History

In 1996, a battle over the future of affirmative action was raging at UC Berkeley. Youth and student organizers across the state were coming to consciousness and joining the movement to defend equal access to education. Young women and young people of color were the frontline fighters of this struggle for justice, but they lacked the support and training they needed to confidently develop as strong leaders. SOUL was born out of that struggle, designed to serve as a program that would train young women and young people of color to build and lead the social justice movement.

SOUL started as a summer training program inspired by the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee’s Freedom Summer. Since that first summer, SOUL has blossomed from a student-based summer program into a year-round community-based organizing and training center for young people. We now run a wide variety of organizing skills trainings, political education programs and technical assistance projects to meet the many needs of the social justice movement in the Bay Area and around the country.

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