Wow, what a week! A new administration, and then over 3 million people across the world participated in Women’s Marches standing up for the causes they believe in. Several NWEI staff and board members marched in Portland, Denver and Washington, D.C, and after being inspired by the experience we’ve been asking “what’s next?”
Although we are not a political organization, we continue to see our model as providing opportunities for people to create stronger communities regardless of political leanings. We are an organization dedicated to creating positive action, committed to meeting people where they are. We believe no change is too small — in fact, the choices we make every day, by rote or by habit, are exactly where change is most possible and powerful.
This past week has highlighted the much-needed work ahead. We acknowledge the complexities of the Women’s March, and the missed opportunities to create an intersectional space that was fully welcoming for communities of color, LGTBQ communities, and other marginalized groups. Even with people coming together in what is possibly the largest demonstration ever in the U.S. to advocate for change in women’s rights, human rights, health care, civil rights, climate change and social justice, we still have difficult and important work to do.
As NWEI staffer Liz Zavodsky reflected post-march: “We must remain present, engaged, and willing to have difficult conversations to stand up for our causes and one another. How can we do this in a complex world?” Whatever you believe, we welcome the opportunity to work together in support of efforts that improve the wellbeing of people, planet and place. This year, we’ll be busy continuing to spark dialogue and action in organizations, businesses, colleges and municipalities. We’ll aslo launch our new course book next month – A Different Way: Living Simply in a Complex World – and invite you to consider the power of living simply in a complex world. We’ll also be developing a new curriculum on leading for change over the course of the coming year, and encourage you to stay tuned for more on that effort.
As we enter a new era, we invite you to connect with those in your communities about what matters most to you. We invite you to reflect on how you can protect and preserve what is dear to you. Finally, we invite you to take action in support of a healthier, more sustainable world.
What will you do to lead for change?
We leave you with this, perhaps our favorite quote, and very apt for this week:
You must be the change you wish to see in the world. – Ghandi