Welcome to Iambrown.org. My name is Autumn Brown. In these pages you will find information on the workshops I teach, the services I can provide, the projects I care about, and the resources I can offer. I hope that there is something useful for you here. Be sure to sign up for my (very low-traffic) newsletter to receive updates about upcoming workshops and events, and opportunities to build and participate in revolutionary work in the worlds of activism, media and art.

July 2012 News - I've Been There

 Hello Good People!

It's hard to describe the feeling of the Allied Media Conference - the learning that happens there, the celebration and dancing and holding, the tears and the pain and the ferocity with which we love, protect, and lift up our comrades and friends. It is truly unlike any conference or event I have experienced, in large part because of the balance we effect between sharing our transformative work within the struggle, and sharing who we understand ourselves to be outside of the struggle. I think the easiest way to show you, if you weren't there, is snap shots. Here's what I did last weekend:
  • I facilitated a conversation between healers and health justice activists from around the country about moving toward developing a national network and a national gathering for Healing Justice in 2013.
  • I led an orientation for all of the healers and health workers and volunteers who would be working in the Healing Justice Practice Space throughout the duration of the Allied Media Conference, and brilliantly balanced the work of holding the space with my fellow coordinators and she-roes: Triana Kazaleh-Sirdenis, Maryse Mitchell-Brody, and Adaku Utah!
  • I attended the premiere of Secret Survivors, an incredible documentary about the hidden epidemic of child sexual abuse in America (1 in 4 girls, 1 in 6 boys experience sexual abuse as children), and a conversation with the filmmakers and survivors who bravely put this piece together.
  • I attended a panel called Crip/Sick Sex, a confidential and brave group of disability justice activists talking about their personal experiences of sexuality and sexual relationships within and outside of the disability community.
  • I attended a collective science fiction writing workshop, brilliantly facilitated by my sister, Adrienne Maree Brown, and subsequently the launch of a Transformative Justice Science Fiction Strategic Reader, with contributions from Adrienne Maree Brown, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Alexis Pauline Gumbs, and Jenna Peters-Golden.
  • I served as a Point Person in the Healing Justice Practice Space, managing emergent health needs, making folks welcome and comfortable, and watching as all of the spots for giving and receiving healing quickly filled up!
  • I WENT DANCING! Moms on my list, you know what a feat this is! I moved my body to the slow jams of hip hop violinist Emily Wells, and the transporting rhythms of hip hop/experimental DJ Waajeed.
  • I stayed up late talking social evolution and the "species self" with transmedia science fiction storyteller Thenmozhi Soundararajan.
  • I shared meals with many people I love and many people I was meeting for the first time!
  • I was asked to collaborate on a science fiction comic with a Seattle-based artist!
Can you see why I think the Allied Media Conference might be the dopest thing ever? When I stand there in the power of my community, I realize that this is the planet I want to live on, and the fact that this event exists at all, in celebration and in pain, means that that other world is possible. AND...I've been there.
In this edition of Iambrown:
  • Join my CSA for Racial and Economic Justice!
  • Doula Training for Philly-based People of Color! (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Something Grown Together (Chicago, IL)
  • The Headwaters Foundation Fall 2012 Social Justice Leadership Institute (Minneapolis, MN)
  • 3rd Annual ‘Growing Roots’ Agronomic University session (Dubuque, IA)

Join my CSA for Racial and Economic Justice!
As many of you know, I am co-developing a pilot workshop called the “Communities Curriculum” under the auspices of the Common Fire Foundation. With my esteemed colleague and fellow board member Sean Ritchey, I will be creating a workshop that supports participants in building intentional communities grounded in the theory and practice of racial healing and economic justice.  

As you can imagine, this is a big job. Common Fire is working tirelessly to secure long-term funding for this project. In the meantime, Sean and I are looking to our community at large to help us raise money in a way that represents our values and our firm belief that the resources we need to heal our communities can be found within our communities. So I am asking you to become a part of a new kind of CSA, where you donate money to make it possible for me to do this critical work. Learn more about how this works, and why it works by checking out the Donate page of my website:
Doula Training for Philly-based People of Color!

The Philly Collaborative for Reproductive Justice & Support (PCRJS) is currently accepting applications for a doula training for people of color who are committed to providing doula services in the Philadelphia area.  

The three-day workshop will be facilitated by trainers from Ancient Song Doula Services, which is an organization based in Brooklyn committed to reclaiming the ancient principles of birthing, reaching more women of color, and lowering the infant mortality rate (http://www.ancientsongdoulaservices.com/).  

What: An intensive three-day training in how to support someone through pregnancy, labor, and childbirth
Who: People of color interested in providing birth, postpartum and/or abortion support applying the doula model of care
When: August 3-5, 2012 (Friday 10am-4pm, Saturday 10am-5pm, Sunday 10am-3pm)
Where: North Philly at a wheelchair-accessible location accessible by public transportation
Cost: Free!  In an effort to increase access to valuable skills and build greater doula capacity for under-served communities, this three-day training will be free to participants.  In exchange, PCRJS asks attendees to:

  • Commit to participating fully in all three days of the training workshop;
  • Commit to providing birth, postpartum and/or abortion doula support in Philadelphia upon being trained;
  • Join with PCRJS in its ongoing efforts to educate the community about the critical role of doulas in supporting people across the full spectrum of pregnancy
  • Provide a $20 deposit upon acceptance of a spot in the training, which will be returned at the completion of the weekend (or, alternatively, which participants may donate towards the cost of the space and food).

Note: Childcare will be available (please indicate specific childcare needs on your application form).  Unfortunately, the August training will be accessible only to English-speakers.

What is PCRJS?
PCRJS is an all-volunteer group of organizers, educators, care-givers, community activists, parents and doulas who are committed to providing support across the full spectrum of pregnancy -- including during birth, miscarriage, abortion, and adoption -- and helping to build community healing, health, and resiliency.  We draw inspiration from the reproductive justice framework, which aims to transform power iniquities and create long-term systemic change.  We believe reproductive justice will be achieved when all people have the social, political, and economic power and resources to make healthy decisions about our gender, bodies, sexuality and families for ourselves and our communities.

PCRJS is excited to be hosting this doula training for people of color and looks forward to working with the participants after the training to identify opportunities for the new doulas to practice their skills and connect with pregnant and parenting people in Philadelphia.

Application Details
We will be accepting applications for the doula training on a rolling basis until July 6 at 5pm.  Accepted individuals will be notified by July 10 and will be asked to commit to reserving their spot (with the $20 deposit, refundable upon completion of the training) by July 15.  

Applications can be submitted by email to pcrjsworkshops@gmail.com  
OR by snail mail to: 

PCRJS c/o Kim Murray
1004 S. 49th St
Philadelphia, PA 19143
Something Grown Together
an autonomously organized social justice institute
@The Center on Halsted, Chicago, IL, 
July 22nd - July 27th
from the website:

Something Grown Together is a week-long institute organized by a network of people across the country. We are committed to gaining the tools and analysis to engage in social justice work in our communities, as well as teaching what we know so that others can do the same.

Through different workshops and projects, this conference introduces social justice work at an introductory level but also contains a second and third track for attendees of previous years and other individuals with more experience.

Some Workshop Offerings:
  • Grassroots fundraising
  • Group facilitation, leadership, and decision-making
  • Dialogue-based strategies for change
  • Organizing community events for social change
  • Using media & art in social change work
  • Liberative identity work
  • Embodied activism
  • Privilege and anti-oppression models
It is vital to the institute's success and the personal growth of each individual involved that a safe space is provided for everyone. It is of high priority that the institute be inclusive and non-discriminatory. We aim to be extremely conscious of the privileged and marginalized identities of both the attendants and the planning committee and to facilitate dialogue within the institute so that we can work together while celebrating our differences.

The Headwaters Foundation Fall 2012 Social Justice Leadership Institute
Interested in leading the next generation of Social Justice Philanthropy? Take part in the Social Justice Leadership Institute this fall!

Information Sessions June 19 and June 28

The Headwaters Foundation for Justice is now recruiting for the Fall 2012 Social Justice Leadership Institute.  If you or someone you know might be interested in joining this year's Institute, attend one of two information sessions being held June 19 at Common Roots Cafe andJune 28 at Open Book Center to learn more.  Deadline for applications is July 15.

The Social Justice Leadership Institute is a participatory model of fundraising for social change and building community.  We're looking for a group of emerging Twin Cities leaders who are interested in investing themselves in the community to better understand local injustices and bring about transformative change.  Participants will be part of a group of approximately 25 people coming from diverse backgrounds to learn, reflect, and act together.  Participants will develop and improve their skills as donor organizers and grassroots fundraisers, working together to strategically support underfunded social justice organizing in Minnesota. Click herefor further information. 

The Headwaters Foundation is a catalyst for social, racial, economic and environmental justice. The Foundation was established in 1984 with the belief that the power for fundamental social change is in the hands of ordinary people. Through grantmaking and organizational assistance, Headwaters focuses on grassroots efforts, engaging and partnering with a committed community of donors and allies in its work. As a public foundation, Headwaters raises all of the money it gives away in grants.  The Foundation distributes over $400,000 annually to groups working for social change. In its history, Headwaters has provided organizational support to more than 870 projects and trained 2,500 community leaders through its capacity building program. To date, Headwaters has distributed $9.3 million dollars across 3,405 grants.  As a member of The Funding Exchange, Headwaters is part of a national network of community foundations committed to addressing social justice at the grassroots level. 

For further information on Headwaters Foundation and the Social Justice Leadership Institute go to http://www.headwatersfoundation.org/get-involved/social-justice-leadership-institute
3rd Annual ‘Growing Roots’ Agronomic University session

September 10—14th, 2012

Theme: The Technological Question

New Hope Catholic Worker Farm & Agronomic University

Dubuque, Iowa

Our lives are saturated by technology. And yet, generally speaking, we spent little time discerning technology’s impact on our lives.  In this 5-day, integral learning (around four issues in intellectual labor and 4 hours of bodily labor) workshop we’ll deal with our technological context.  Through reading and discussion, skill sharing and farm labor, silence and conviviality we’ll consider a number of critical questions centered on technology:
  • What is technology?
  • Is it neutral?
  • What technologies might we want to embrace? Resist?
  • How do radical communities, such as the Amish, discern appropriate use of technology?
  • What value is there in fasting from certain technologies?
  • How can we raise children responsibly in our technological society?
  • How, finally, can we maintain our humanity and integrity in our world?
Readings will be mailed out upon registration.

Arrival is on the night of September 9th and the workshop ends on the afternoon of the 14th before some of us head 40 miles south to Sugar Creek, Iowa for the annual Midwest Catholic Worker gathering that weekend.

Housing: Plenty of outdoor space for tents.  Limited indoor space.

Cost: To cover costs of each participant is around 40 dollars per person.  But we invite you to engage with us in a Gift Economy. We ask that you pay back or pay forward according to what is meaningful to you. To enter into the realm of the gift is an experiment we invite you into.  Gift culture, both ancient and elusive in our capitalist culture, is what we are striving—imperfectly—towards.

To register for this event, please call Eric (no emails please) at  563.556.0987. Space is limited.

In Peace,

New Hope Catholic Worker Farm
6697 Mitchell Mill Rd.
La Motte, Iowa (8 miles from downtown Dubuque) 52054
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