Archive for the ‘Food Not Bombs’ Category

To better prepare for the police presence at the May Day march, we will be hosting a Know Your Rights Training, geared specifically towards the march, for anyone who wants to attend. Knowing your rights when in a situation where police contact is likely is the best groundwork to have for making sure that you are not pressured by the police to give up more of your rights than they have already taken from you.

This will be more of an open discussion and planning session specifically for the march, not one of our more general workshops. Anyone who is planning on volunteering for Copwatch, Anarchist Black Cross, as a medic or bike marshall, or as a police liaison should consider this workshop an essential refresher in preparation for Sunday’s march.

Also, there will be coffee and donuts!

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The Monroe Park Advisory Council removed from its website the document of their plans to renovate Monroe Park. This was a publicly available document up until sometime recently when they apparently decided to no longer make it available. Fortunately, at the Wingnut, we had saved a copy of this document. We have now uploaded it onto archive.org to make is publicly accessible again.

http://www.archive.org/details/MonroeParkRenovationPlans2008

You can’t view it on archive.org, but if you right click the PDF link, you can select, ‘Save Link As’ to download the renovation plans to your computer. If you can’t download because you are on a public access computer, you can come by the Wingnut Anarchist Collective to view the file on our computer. We have open hours on Wednesdays and Fridays from 4-10 and you can call 804 303 5449 to arrange to stop by some other time.

Make sure you check out page 61 on the bottom left side where it has the desired ratio of homeless and homeless appearing people to everyone else- 75-100:1. Read about the plans for private security for the park.

Please download, print, and share this document with others so you can understand their plans for renovation, and also see first hand some of the troubling aspects.  When confronted, MPAC pretty much refused to take accuontability for the plan that they developed.  MPAC has also done things to deliberately become more secretive- removing their email contacts for MPAC members from their website, lying about no longer having meetings, and apparently removing the content from the link to the plan o their website. (more…)

Richmond Food Not Bombs has been sharing food in Monroe Park for over sixteen years now. We have developed many connections and friendships over the course of our existence, helped provide healthy food to many individuals who may not have had access to it otherwise, and become a staple of social activity for many people’s Sunday afternoons.

The proposed renovations to Monroe Park are an attack , a judgement on who the park should and shouldn’t be for. It is an attack on the homeless, the “homeless-appearing” (whatever that means – it’s in the Monroe Park Advisory Council’s renovation plans), and groups and individuals who don’t judge people by their social status or whether they have conventional means of acquiring shelter.

We will not stand for it.

The only change that the park really needs is for the city to do its job when it comes do doing maintenance on the bathrooms, as they are functional but one of the water pipes to the sinks has corroded away. Other improvements, such as installing permanent chess tables, or a playground area for kids would be nice, but NOT at the cost of driving out the folks who currently congregate in the park, shutting the entire park down for 18 months, or privatizing the security of the park.

Food Not Bombs will resist all attempts to shut the entire park down for any amount of time. (more…)

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Kids Movie – Free kids movies being played via projector every weekend at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective. Starts as soon as it’s dark!

Street Cleanup – Neighborhood cleanup effort aroudn the Wingnut Anarchist Collective. Starts before Food Not Bombs at 10am, followed by breakfast!

Food Not Bombs – Help cook and serve a free community meal! Cooking begins Sundays at 12:30pm at the Wingnut Anarchist Collective. Food is served in Monroe Park on the corner of Belvidere and Main at 4:00pm. Help is especially needed for cleanup at the Wingnut after meal is served! Organizational meetings the first Sunday of the month during cooking. Meetings about the Monroe Park Renovation every Sunday at the park after meal serve! (more…)

The Monroe Park Master Plan:  A look at the costs

by Dave Thompson

This document is intended to be a quick reference guide for the costs of renovating Monroe Park, mostly using data from the  Monroe Park Master Plan (http://www.monroepark.com/roadside/Monroe_Park_Report_2_2008.pdf).   This is a draft and may still contain some errors, please double check my numbers before you use them, and if you find anything wrong with this document, let me know so I can improve it. (more…)

In the so-called “conversation” surrounding the proposed Monroe Park renovations, there is a lot that isn’t being discussed. Leaving aside councilman Charles Samuels’ blatant lies about the functionality of the bathrooms and drinking water availability in the park, the lack of inclusion of either food sharing groups or the people who eat with them, and the question of whether the proposed renovations are even necessary, that still leaves us with the problem of the TOTAL lack of communication in regards to the plan to close the ENTIRE PARK for 9 months to a year and a half (we’ve recieved two different numbers from two different people involved in the planning. ) while the renovation takes place. That is unacceptable.

Monroe Park is an eight acre park which is pretty conveniently divided into various individual islands. It would be extremely easy, and probably much more economically viable, to do phased construction, leaving at least some of the park available to students, food sharing groups, and other folks who rely on the park for recreation and relaxation.

The proposal to centralize “homeless services” to the Conrad Center is a non-solution, and is unacceptable for various reasons, which have been expressed by homeless individuals and homeless advocates ad nauseum.

We, the people of Richmond who are currently an active part of the dynamic of Monroe Park, demand that a minimum of 25% of the park remain available for public use at all times during the renovations. We further demand open, clear communication from the entities involved in the renovation if/when the area of the park open to the public is subject to change.

We will not compromise on these two very simple demands under ANY circumstances.

We stand firmly in solidarity with the homeless community in Richmond and with those groups who seek to alleviate the problems they face.

The Wingnut Anarchist Collective

This is in response to the recently unnveiled plans for renovations of Monroe Park in Richmond, Virginia, as well as comments about the park from Charles R. Samuels who is the City Councilman for the 2nd district where Monroe Park is located. This is written by a longtime member of the Richmond Food Not Bombs organization, which has been serving a weekly meal in the park for over 16 years.

The Conrad Center at 1400 Oliver Hill Way is an unacceptable location for the centralization of ‘homeless services’. There are multiple reasons as to why this location is unacceptable. The logistical reasons have to do with the difficulty of accessing the Conrad Center. The Conrad Center is in a valley, between two steep hills. This means that for many folks with children, disabilities, etc. the location itself is very difficult if not impossible to reach. The Conrad Center is also geographically isolated, which means that even in nice weather it is a long walk from the other places where homeless people might be hanging out. There is not really any place near by that homeless people could hang out between meals (breakfast and dinner) at the Conrad Center. In extreme weather- hot or cold or wet, people risk their health and well being walking so far.

Before the Conrad Center was a reality, homeless people voiced their concerns about the location. They were ignored. Tactics which could have been implemented to make the Conrad Center more accessible even in its terrible location were ignored and neglected. If people who used the Conrad Center were given free bus passes so they could reach the Conrad Center, it would be a lot more useful to a lot more people. However, free bus service is not provided. And now Richmond’s only source of public transportation, the GRTC bus system is cutting routes and raising rates. Which is yet another attack on the poor and working classes which continues to make the Conrad Center a less and less acceptable location.

Aside from its isolation, the location of the Conrad Center is unacceptable because of its psychological impacts. Situated across from the Richmond City Jail, and next to the court and women’s jail, the Conrad Center is a very stigmatizing place. The location of the Conrad Center is clearly part of an ongoing push to make the homeless less visible, and part of the mindset which pushes to criminalize homelessness. Beyond the terrible location of the Conrad Center, the concept of isolating homeless people from other people is also extremely unhealthy. Creating spaces that are ‘homeless only’ prevents friendships and communication across classes. Isolating the homeless reduces their connections with others in the Richmond community and makes them more vulnerable to racist and classist legislation. Homeless people face oppression from many sides, and isolating them only increases this potential for oppression.

The Monroe Park Advisory Council does not accurately represent the people who are involved in activities in Monroe Park. (more…)

The Wingnut Anarchist Collective is currently looking for more roommates and collective members.
You can find our more about the collective on the blog at http://www.thewingnutrva.wordpress.com/

PLease send your questions/comments/proposals to wingnut_collective@yahoo.com

If you know someone who might be interested please feel free to pass the info onto them.

Here are some things we are looking for- we don’t expect any one person to fulfill any of these things, but you should at elast be interested in a lot of it. We are serious, we work hard, we have a lot of fun, and we get a lot done.

Future Wingnut could…

like dogs (3 live here)
sober or ok living in a sober house (won’t come home intoxicated, ever)
clean/orderly/willing to be neat and help clean the space
likes copwatch
not an apologist about cops
not a snitch
productive
has $200 a month for rent/utilities
has extra $ to put towards house projects
ok with cooking vegan for communal meals and respecting different diets and allergies (more…)

This year Food Not Bombs will be tabling at the 3rd annual Jonny Z Fest on Shields Avenue, on the same block as Joe’s Inn, between Grove and Hanover.

This will be an opportunity to fundraise, talk to future volunteers, and celebrate the memory of someone who used to participate in Richmond Food Not Bombs.
The Fest is from 12-5, so we will need volunteers from 11-6 to setup and cleanup. Be prepared to talk to lots of people and tell them about Food Not Bombs.
Anyone who wants to make things to sell ahead of time is encouraged to- crafts, shirts, etc. Also we can use a donation jar and more fliers!

More about the Event: (more…)

Richmond Food Not Bombs Checklists/ Ideas about what the heck is going on

If you are thinking about coming to Richmond Food Not Bombs it would be awesome if you would take a minute to look at these lists and familiarize yourself with the basic process.

If you don’t have the time to read this before you come, that is ok, because we have copies posted at the Wingnut and copies you can take home!

Having these lists helps us to all be on the same page, without having to consult one person or group of people as being in charge. Because no one is in charge!

Cooking

-Gather all of the food from various basements/ rooms/ cars/ etc.

-Bring up 2 or 3 tables from the basement and set them up in big room

-Bring up colanders, cutting boards, and knives from the basement

-Assess what you have and what you need in terms of food- dig through boxes, check the pantry etc.

-Come to a consensus about what dishes will be prepared from the food you have (more…)