I am a poet, writer and story teller. My name is Stevie Elepan and I am from Puerto Rico ( Boriken) and I have lived in the USA for five years. In my time here in the the Pacific Northwest I have learned much about community organizing. I have learned that without study, hard work and organization one is much more limited in what they can achieve. There are many people around the world that have been able to organize in their communities with little dependence on large corporations or colonial powers. The USA is a vast country with many resources but little community organization. Although it is a world power it falls behind in areas of public health, food safety and education, compared to small countries with limited resource, like Cuba.
I would like to go around the globe to write about and get involved in some of these communities. The experiences I will have and the things I learn will be recorded and shared with the world in the form of blog reports and zees. I intend to start my research in the Philippines, a former colony of Spain and the US and learn how indigenous people work together to sustain themselves on the islands. Then to Iraq to investigate how folks have pulled together to rebuild after war and survive the current conflict in the country. I would then continue to Afrika and learn how different communities have developed after colonialism. From Africa I would cross over to Cuba and Puerto Rico to do a comparison of community organization under a socialist model vs a capitalist model.
Resources will go primarily to transportation and a daily meal. I intend to share surplus resources with my host communities. I will not just be documenting and interviewing folks, I will be involved in the day to day work. My contribution to these host could anything such as teaching English to harvesting crops to cleaning latrines.
Many books are written through a very Eurocentric gaze and it may be time that another person of color form a colony contribute to the literature and research currently available. It is important that stories about people of color be written by people of color for people of color.
This project is important to me because my island is in a crisis and we need hope, we need an example of the things we can achieve. We also need to see that we are not alone in our struggle and that by developing international solidarity we can all overcome the global economic crisis before disaster strikes.
The only way I can repay the world and all of you that will be contributing is by producing detailed, honest and thoughtful educational pieces about the world we live in and the people we share it with.
To help click on the link below.
LONG LIVE INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY! PALANTE,SIEMPRE PALANTE!