Friends Center Tenant Newsletter 

Issue 83, November 2022

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE  

Last week I went to the Parkway Central Branch of the Free Library to hear George Lakey in conversation with Varshini Prakash, executive director and co-founder of Sunrise Movement, the youth-led movement to stop climate change.

            George was in conversation about his new book, Dancing with History: A Life for Peace and Justice.

            Now a member of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, George has been a Quaker nonviolent activist and researcher for over 7 decades! Among many other things, he co-founded Movement for a New Society in the 1970s, Training for Change in the 1990s, and Earth Quaker Action Team in the 2010s.

            Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, George often leads a community singalong of Handel’s Messiah in the Cherry Street Room in December. We’ll announce it if and when it returns.

            Friends Center is full of inspiring stories like George’s. In the tenant newsletter, we try to lift up a few of them each month. Please let Jennifer Williams know if your organization has news to share!

—Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

Y.A. BOOK LAUNCH EVENT AT CPMM
Young Adult Adaptation of Robin DiAngelo’s White Fragility
Dec 7, 2022 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Friends Center, 1501 Cherry Street

Join Toni Graves Williamson and Ali Michael for the launch of their Young Adult adaptation of Robin DiAngelo’s bestselling book White Fragility. This event is sponsored by Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, Friends Council on Education, and Friends Select School. Tickets are available for free or purchase (copy of the book included) on Eventbrite.

» Register here.

Event: Covenant House

Annual ‘Sleep Out’ raises over $600,000 for local youth homelessness

In the bitter cold on Thursday night into Friday morning, people traded their beds for a sleeping bag and a cardboard box. Participants raised funds for Covenant House’s services for homeless youth.

Get the full scoop here: Via Channel 6/ABC
(Early on in the segment, you get a glimpse of our facility manager, John Gibson, moving some supplies!)

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS 

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Decolonizing Thanksgiving Is An Oxymoron – Kids Books Dismantling The Myth of a ‘First Thanksgiving’

Teach your kids the truth of Thanksgiving—modeling generosity and gratitude all year long—but don’t whitewash the violent history of colonization.

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Emerging Leaders for Liberation

This year, AFSC launched Emerging Leaders for Liberation (ELL) to help young people strengthen their social justice and leadership skills. Over eight months, youth get trained on anti-racism, organizing, advocacy, nonviolent direct action, and more. They also develop projects to address systemic issues in their own communities.

“It’s vital that young people understand how much their voices matter and the power they have to create change. We need to continue investing in their leadership for a better future for everyone,” says Mariana Martinez,
ELL program director. 

The inaugural cohort of ELL participants includes 30 young people from 15 states. Many have worked with local AFSC programs or are part of Quaker meetings or colleges.

Meet three of this year’s participants.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

CPMM AUTHOR EVENT
The Library Committee warmly invites you to hear CPMM member Steve Davison talk about and read from 3 of his books of poetry on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 11 a.m. – 12 noon (via Zoom).

The Road to Continental Heart: Befriending and Defending the Spirit of North America —  A coffee-table-style book featuring poems he wrote once a week for a friend who walked across the country with a group environmental activists;
Continental Heart — A meditation on our relationship with the land we live in and an appeal for a more spiritual culture of place;
Dancing Mockingbird — A collection of nature poems.

CLICK HERE to join in on the poetry and discussion!

Or cut and paste this URL into your internet browser:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87989229096?pwd=ZkhoTXJ3M2ExZ0c5V1BUMTE1WklXQT09

Meeting ID: 879 8922 9096
Passcode: 084669
To find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kbs4ogRVI

TENANT NEWS

Stockton Rush Bartol Foundation

Fundamentals of Game Design for the Classroom

December 5, 2022, 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Come join Global Writes to learn the fundamentals of game design with the integration of a variety of technology tools to plan and create board and video games that can be used to teach content-based themes in the classroom.  Their Skin in the Game process utilizes game design and concepts in Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Art, and Math (STREAM) to engage participants in advanced, interdisciplinary learning.  Please have on hand a computer that can support Chrome browser as well as some plain paper and pencil.

ANNA Crusis Feminist Choir

This fall, small groups of ANNA singers took to the streets to sing, hoping the current cultural climate would bend toward justice. We are pleased to present a full choir concert in person and broadcast online. In this concert, we sing to remind ourselves that when we connect and collaborate, our power is much more than when we move through the world alone. Together, People Have the Power.

Tickets available here.

(Community Sing starts at 7:00 pm before the concert.)

December 10th & 11th  @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

BEYOND FRIENDS CENTER

Season One Episodes:

  • Episode 1How Do We Stop Doing Things that Make No Sense? With Rev. Mariama White-Hammond
  • Episode 2Where Do You Find Hope? With Corina Newsome
  • Episode 3What Do We Tell the Children? With Craig Santos Perez 
  • Episode 4What is Wrong with Me? With Keyana Pardilla, Robin Wall Kimmerer, and Sherri Mitchell 
  • Episode 5If I Can’t Make a Difference, then What Do I Do? With Veronice Miles 
  • Episode 6Daddy, Did We Hurt Them? With Ben Yosua-Davis

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter

October Tenant Newsletter: Renovation & Parking Updates, Famous African American Quaker, FCNL is Hiring

Issue 75, October 2021

DIRECTOR’S NOTE  

Greetings and best wishes for fall!

With changes in climate, our local autumn season seems to come later than ever. One bonus is that the native plants in the front garden and the courtyard oval are still blooming—and attracting pollinators. The gardens have filled in nicely over the years. I like to see it as a metaphor for the millions of people working in communities for positive change, including the few hundred based here at Friends Center. Through your steady, persistent work, through your showing up again and again, may the systems in which we are embedded also evolve, just like the gardens have grown—even if it’s hard to see the change at any given moment.

Take care and stay safe,

Chris Mohr, Executive Director 

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

Renovation of 1520 Race Street

The renovation of the 1520 Race Street building by Friends Select School began this week, starting with interior demolition.

                While most of the work will not have an impact on users of the Friends Center, there will be some temporary changes in the courtyard. The contractor will put fencing and barriers in place to provide a safe distance from the building. This will impact Friends Child Care Center the most, and so we will be in frequent communication with them.

                Note that the loading zone is being used by contractors for both Friends Center and Friends Select. The loading zone is only for deliveries, pickups, and dropoffs. There is no tenant parking until further notice. See the updated LOADING ZONE GUIDELINES (right).

                We will be in close touch with the contractor, so that we may do our best to alert the Friends Center community to any significant changes before they occur. Our priority is to maintain safety for everyone. Please reach out to Erick Emerick with any concerns and we will do our best to address them.

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Famous Quaker: Benjamin Banneker, an Astronomer and Mathematician

Benjamin Banneker (1731-1806) was a self-educated African American mathematician, astronomer, surveyor, compiler of almanacs, and writer. He was also a regular attender at Quaker meetings and an abolitionist who gained fame and recognition for his contributions to science and his prescient correspondence on multiple subjects, including race, with key intellectuals of the time. Click link above to read the full article.

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC) 

On the Issues: 50 Years Since the Attica Uprising

On Sept. 9, 1971, over 1200 people incarcerated at the Attica Correctional Facility in New York took control of the prison to demand better living conditions and human rights. After four tense days, law enforcement retook the prison by force, leading to the deaths of at least 43 people. In the 50 years since, organizations like AFSC have been entrenched in the work to advocate with incarcerated people for improvements to the system that respect basic human dignity, as well as the growing movement to #FreeThemAll and abolish the prison system as we know it.

Join AFSC staff from our Healing Justice program as they discuss how our work was catalyzed by the events of the Attica Uprising, and hear from campers from the Liberation Summer Camp, which had a focus on this moment in history. Speakers include Healing Justice program coordinator Lewis Webb, Jr., filmmaker and advocate Kharon Benson, Liberation Camp intern Akira Rose, Joeli Valerio, and others.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM) 

Author Reading by Pamela Haines

Pamela Haines will speak via Zoom on her book of poetry, ALIVE IN THIS WORLD, on October 30th at 11:00 AM.

The collection of poetry is organized into three sections. The first, A HOME WITH THE TREES, explores a relationship with trees with a growing understanding and gratitude. In COMMUTER ENCOUNTERS, intimate contact with strangers on a trolley or bus invites reflection on humanity, connection and justice. In the final section, A HOME WITH THE EARTH, the soil is a medium for meditation on nourishment and how living in small green city spaces can bring big gifts.  The poems are a call to pay attention to Life and to not let the world go by unnoticed.

Please log in using the Zoom platform listed below:

                Meeting ID: 818 4086 3719

                Password: 979529

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81840863719?pwd=ZmdUSmVUL2orbmxpZGtxc05sYmwxZz09

TENANT NEWS

COUNCIL ON AMERICAN-ISLAMIC RELATIONS (CAIR), PHILADELPHIA CHAPTER
“On the anniversary of Sept. 11, local Muslims contemplate what they’ve endured the last 20 years”
From the Philadelphia Inquirer, 9/11/2021:

                …In general… Philadelphia is a “hospitable place for American Muslims, both African American and immigrants,” said Jacob Bender, executive director of CAIR Philadelphia, the Council on American Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil liberties and advocacy group. “Perhaps it’s the city’s Quaker background, opening it to different religious minorities.”…

                Bender estimates that close to 200,000 Muslims live in Philadelphia, 80% of whom he identified as African Americans. The Pennsylvania suburbs are home to another 200,000, mostly Arab immigrants and their children….

                Another unfortunate aftermath of Sept. 11 was that many young Muslim Americans wanted to disassociate themselves from their religious background, said Ahmet Selim Tekelioglu,education and outreach director for CAIR-Philadelphia.

Full Article Here

PENNSYLVANIA HEALTH ACCESS NETWORK (PHAN)

Please join us for PHAN’s 13th annual health conference

WHEN: Thursday October 21st, 10am – 3pm and Friday October 22nd from 10am-1:30pmWHERE: We’re going virtual again this year!QUESTIONS?: Contact Jennifer at jennifer@pahealthaccess.org or 267-908-9100 x704

As the only conference of its kind, PHAN brings together health care policy experts, advocates, industry representatives, enrollment assisters, and government leaders to discuss key health policy issues directly affecting the Commonwealth.

This fall, join us as we discuss such critical healthcare issues as: lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic (thus far); the federal and state landscape for healthcare policy; lowering the cost of prescription drugs; health equity & the role of Medicaid; hospital consolidation & the changing healthcare landscape; and much more!

» Register Here

IN THE (QUAKER) NEIGHBORHOOD 

Haddonfield Quarterly Meeting

“The Underground Railroad in South Jersey
and Its Importance Today”

Featuring
Linda Shockley, Executive Board President,
Lawnside Historical Society

“Oral history identifies Peter Mott as an agent and conductor for the Underground Railroad, working from his home and Mt. Pisgah A.M.E. Church in present day Lawnside.  Freedom seekers would continue their journey north via Evesham, Haddonfield, and Pennsauken.  The Lawnside Historical Society has restored Mott’s home for use as a museum of the Underground Railroad and the Lawnside community, the only historically African-American incorporated municipality in the northern USA.:  (www.petermotthouse.org)

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Worship – 10 AM; Program – 11 AM

At Medford Meeting and via Zoom.

Email Haddonfieldquarterly@yahoo.com for more information.

Now Hiring:
Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) is searching for their next General Secretary.

Friends Committee On National Legislation (fcnl.org)

The new General Secretary will be a courageous Quaker leader with a commitment to justice, peace, and environmental sustainability; to expanding diversity, equity and inclusion within the FCNL community and beyond; and to building and nurturing relationships across political and organizational divides.

We Seek a World Free of War and the Threat of War
We seek a Society with Equity and Justice for All
We seek Community where Every Person’s Potential Can be Fulfilled
We Seek an Earth Restored

For more information, contact DeAnne Butterfield, Clerk, Search Committee gssearch@fcnl.org

September Tenant Newsletter: End of Summer Vacation, 9/11, Celebrating 90 years & Quaker Trivia

Issue 74, September 2021

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Vacation called and I had to answer! I hope you’ll do the same when the same when the opportunity comes.

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

  • Please continue to be diligent in wearing your facemask in common areas of the building and practice handwashing regularly.

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Morning sessions are also available from 10:30 am – 12:30 pm. Click here for more details

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

The lasting impact of U.S. decisions in the aftermath of 9/11By Mary Zerkel

Twenty years ago, on Sept. 11, 2001, the world was shocked at the coordinated attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, resulting in the deaths of nearly 3,000 people.  

Expressions of sympathy and grief came from throughout the world. But rather than use the moment to forge global cooperation, the United States embarked on a disastrous course driven by narratives of fear and retribution. Continue reading here.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

Quakerism 101 – Quaker Discernment, Decision Making, and the Meeting for Business

Overview

Our second session will explore the Quaker understanding of spiritual discernment and the Quaker processes for making decisions, including the meeting for worship with attention to business and the life of the meeting.

Date: October 24, 1:00-3:00 pm

Zoom: The Zoom link is the same as the link for meeting for worship. The worship meeting will simply be extended.

Facilitators: Barry Scott and Jennifer Walker

TENANT NEWS

The Center For Healing & Justice Through Sport (CHJS)

 Launch Tour Recap 

Last week The Collaborative partnered with the Center for Healing and Justice Through Sport to introduce their work and vision of CHJS, highlight some of the amazing work happening in Philadelphia, and continue the conversation around how the Philadelphia SBYD community can continue to push our field forward. 

The mission of CHJS is to make sport healing for all youth, everywhere, through training, consulting, and movement building. They believe that underneath the fun and camaraderie, sport can be used as a vehicle to provide creative and accessible solutions to some of society’s biggest issues.  Click Here to stay up to date with CHJS and their upcoming events!

YOU’RE INVITED!

Join Friends Council on Education for an evening of Light — poetry, music, thought — to uplift and sustain us on this next stretch of the road we are traveling.

When: September 22nd, 2021

Time: 7-8:30 pm EDT

Location: Event held via Zoom

Register Here

We hope that you will join us for this and other activities throughout the year in celebration of Friends Council’s 90th Anniversary!

IN THE (QUAKER) NEIGHBORHOOD

Quaker Speak is a bi-weekly video series that highlights a variety of relevant topics and how they tie into Quakerism.

This particular video touches on the difference between a welcoming space and an inclusive space. Click here to watch!

Quaker Trivia

Four of the five women who convened the 1848 convention on women’s rights at Seneca Falls were Quakers.  It is presumed that the reason Quaker women played a large part in the struggle for women’s suffrage was due to the leadership skills acquired throughout two centuries of women’s experience speaking publicly and adopting administrative leadership roles within the Quaker community—opportunities unmatched for women in any other western religion at that time.

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter: Going Once, Going Twice, SOLD!, Upgrades, Job Openings and more!

Issue 73, August 2021 

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE  

As announced in February, we have now completed the sale of the 1520 Race Street building to Friends Select School, effective today! 

Thank you to everyone involved, including former tenants of 1520, who collaborated with us on plans for relocation of workplaces and storage; the advisors & board of directors of Friends Center, who thoroughly reviewed every aspect of the deal; and especially the staff and contractors of Friends Center. In particular, a big shout-out to Erick Emerick for managing our side of the move-out.   

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director 

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER 

We’ve upgraded! That’s right, our Historical Quaker Meetinghouse has been updated with some modern-day technology. The Race Street Room now features a built in PC, camera and microphones giving super hosts the ability to hold Zoom meetings. 

What’s that??? Over having zoom meeting you say?!!? No problem! You can now invite up to 300 in person guests to meetings in the worship room. And the room now has air conditioning for hot weather! (Masks required.) 

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS  

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM) 

Philadelphia Yearly Meeting recently completed their 341st Annual Sessions, which was virtual again this year.  You may review all of Annual Sessions or focus on the parts that speak to you the most: 

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC) 

ARE THERE HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS HIDDEN IN YOUR INVESTMENTS? 

Knowing what you own is the first step to aligning your investments with your values. You be invested in state violence through companies involved in mass incarceration, immigrant detention and surveillance, military occupation, or the border industry. 

Our database includes original research and lists over 150 company and industry profiles. Learn how companies profit from and support state violence. Then use this knowledge to create change.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM) 

Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting is now hosting in person and virtual Meeting for Worship. Meeting for Worship will begin at 11a.m., and unfortunately is no longer followed by coffee hour. The building will close at 1 pm. If you wish to attend CPMM’s virtual Worship, please email the meeting office at office@cpmm.org to get the meeting ID and password. 

TENANT NEWS 

Keystone Energy Efficiency Alliance 

The Conference 

What does the future of energy efficiency look like? A difficult year has given us new appreciation for “business-as-usual” conditions. But as the industry recovers, we’re facing a unique opportunity to look beyond the old “normal” and shape the future. KEEA and EEA-NJ’s first in-person event of 2021, Forging the Future for Energy Efficiency, presents two days of forward-looking programming examining the policies, technologies, and companies pushing our industry into a new period of growth and innovation. 

When: September 22-23rd at the Philadelphia Navy Yard; act by August 13th for early bird pricing! 

» Register here. 

Community Ventures 

 Job Opening: Assistant Rental Manager 

Community Ventures is a non-profit, mission-driven developer and property manager of affordable housing in Philadelphia. 

Seeking a career-minded and energetic Assistant Rental Manager to join the team managing a group of affordable residential properties in North Philadelphia. Click here for responsibilities, requirements and benefits.

IN THE (QUAKER) NEIGHBORHOOD 

Do you know a Quaker leader?   

FCNL is searching for a new General Secretary. 

The Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) seeks a Spirit-led, seasoned, and strategic leader who brings vision, inspiration, and executive experience to the role of General Secretary. The new General Secretary will be a courageous Quaker leader with a commitment to justice, peace, and environmental stewardship; to expanding diversity, equity, and inclusion within the FCNL community and beyond; and to building and nurturing relationships across political and organizational divides that promote healing of divisions in the Congress and the country. 

A position profile is posted on the FCNL website at www.fcnl.org/gssearch.  

Friends Center Newsletter 4/2021: Shredding Day II, Chauvin Verdict Responses, Tenants in the News

Issue 71, April 2021

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Although this newsletter is going out late in April, it has plenty of interesting information. Send us your updates, so we can share more news again in just a few weeks. Happy spring!

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

Shredding Day II – First week of May

Shredding Day was so successful, we’re making a sequel!

Please drop off paper for shredding inside the loading dock entrance in the Meetinghouse basement, Monday, May 3—Thursday May 6. (The vendor will be here very early that Friday, so Friday is too late to drop material off.)

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Runway to Annual Sessions 2021

May 4—July 24, 2021

The Runway to Annual Sessions is filled with virtual workshops, gatherings, Business Q&As, an All Ages Gathering, and a Collaborative Fair!

            During the week of Annual Sessions, July 27 through August 1, we will gather to begin our week with the 4th Annual Spiritual Formation retreat. Following the virtual retreat, we will connect as a yearly meeting in All Ages Worship, Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business, five fantastic keynotes, an awesome Artist in Residence, Youth programs, Young Adult programs, Fellowship, worship sharing, Affinity Spaces, epistle writing, and Bible studies.

            This year’s Annual Sessions theme is “Uproot Injustice, Root Justice” and is present and woven into all aspects of our work together including Meeting for Worship with Attention to Business, our keynote presentations, the Collaborative Fair, and the workshops. 

            To receive the latest schedule of events, registration details, upcoming events and stories, please check the Annual Sessions page and sign up for our weekly News & Events newsletter.

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Despite Chauvin conviction, trauma of police violence continues

Young Black and Brown people in the Twin Cities need accountability and healing

SAINT PAUL, MN (April 20, 2021) A Minneapolis jury found Derek Chauvin—a white police officer—guilty for the murder of George Floyd. George Floyd—a Black 46-year-old Minneapolis resident—was killed by Chauvin and three other officers on May 25 of last year. Floyd’s murder sparked widespread condemnation and protests across the Twin Cities and across the country. The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC)—a Quaker social justice organization—organized against this killing and police violence nationwide.

»   Read the full statement from Shanene Herbert, director of AFSC’s Healing Justice program in Saint Paul.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

CPMM member .O will talk about her transforming love ministry on June 6, 2021. This is part of a series, Meeting for Worship with Attention to Ministry, sponsored by the Committee on Gifts and Leadings.

» Calendar Listing

TENANT NEWS

 

CAIR-Philadelphia

Statement on Derek Chauvin Trial Verdict

(PHILADELPHIA, PA, 04/21/21) — The Philadelphia Chapter of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Philadelphia) welcomes the conviction of Derek Chauvin in the murder of George Floyd….
            CAIR-Philadelphia Civil Rights Attorney Timothy Welbeck said, “A guilty verdict, while satisfying in that it brings a measure of justice to Derek Chauvin’s heinous actions, is still an incomplete measure. It will never bring back George Floyd and it is just the first step in addressing unchecked police violence against people of color.”
            He continued, “The criminal justice system that we have is broken at its very foundation. The murder of George Floyd is one of the most grotesque illustrations of that. I’m glad to see a guilty verdict. This is what we were hoping for and anticipating. Just as the prosecution said in its closing arguments, ‘you saw what you saw,’ America saw what it saw. And I am relieved that at the very least, we have some semblance of accountability in this moment.” Welbeck concluded by saying, “This conviction is a start, but there is much work to do…”
            Said Mohammed Zubairu, President of the Executive Committee of CAIR-Philadelphia, “The Muslim community of the Greater Delaware Valley must continue to speak out on issues of justice in our locality and our country. As Americans, this is our First Amendment right. As Muslims, this is our obligation, to correct wrongs when we see them, and certainly not be part to them by action or inaction.”
» Read the full statement

GENDER JUSTICE FUND

Trust-based philanthropy offers us a path to power sharing, beyond the pandemic

“By lifting restrictions on the use of funds and relying on grantees to tell us what they needed, we made seismic shifts in the distribution of power in our sector,” says guest columnist Farrah Parkes.

» Read the full piece

SCATTERGOOD FOUNDATION

PA Pardon System:

Join The Scattergood Foundation & Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity for a conversation about the PA Pardon System. Held on 5/17 at 9am with DA Larry Krasner, Jeffery Brown and a host of others. Register here

Aligning policy & practice through local grantmaking efforts
by Caitlin O’Brien & Alyson Ferguson for Generocity:

The Scattergood Foundation will award four $20,000 grants to grassroots orgs as part of its new grant program, Policy Meets Practice: Think Bigger Do Good Support Local.

» Read more

American Rescue Plan Act and Philadelphia Behavioral Health, by Joe Pyle forGenerocity:
»
Part 1

» Part 2

SINGING CITY

Featured on WRTI’s Friday Choral Connection!

This Friday, April 30, 1:30 pm

WRTI-FM, on the radio at 90.7 FM and online wrti.org, presents Friday Choral Connection, which airs every Friday at 1:30 PM. This program, which started last September, has been extended through June 2021. Singing City will be featured on April 30.

IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD

PROGRAMS AT DILWORTH PARK

Center City Fit
Mondays & Tuesdays, April 12-October 12, 6 p.m.-7 p.m.

Get ready to get moving! Professional instructors and trainers from Optimal Sport 1315 Walnut will host free outdoor fitness classes for participants of all skill levels. Monday evenings will be dedicated to Zumba, and Tuesdays in April will focus on Boot Camp before transitioning to HIIT classes in May. 

The Arts on Center Stage
Wednesdays, May 5—August 25, 5 p.m.-7:30 p.m.

Philadelphia’s robust network of arts & culture organizations, large and small, will be celebrated every week as they showcase their talent in the center of the city at Dilworth Park. Performances will range from orchestral serenades and ballet ensembles to jazz instrumentals and beyond. In support of local restaurants, guests are encouraged to dine al fresco with takeout meals from nearby eateries. Cocktails to-go will be offered to guests 21 and older, and a special menu will be available at the Air Grille. CCD and the park’s café operators have implemented increased health safety procedures throughout the park and visitors will be reminded to adhere to all CDC guidelines, including wearing masks at all times. All programs are weather permitting and subject to change. Dilworth Park is located at 1 S. 15th St., on the west side of City Hall. Visit DilworthPark.org to learn more.

Mourning Together, Shredding Day, Innocence on Death Row and more

Issue 70, March 2021

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Today in the U.S. we have yet another reason for mourning. The horrific mass shooting of Asian American women in Atlanta is just the latest sign of a wave of anti-Asian violence in the US. And other forms of structural and interpersonal violence continue to occur here in Philadelphia, in the US, and in other countries (many of whom are supplied with weapons from this country).

                Fortunately, many organizations at Friends Center organize communities and offer resources to counter these trends. Here are just a few samples:

  • CAIR:
    TONIGHT (3/17):

    Vigil for Victims of Anti-Asian Violence 10th & Vine St Plaza, 7-8 PM for all those who are grieving those who have suffered. At 6 PM, we also welcome those who want to help make posters for the vigil.
  • AFSC:
    Standing up to Anti-Asian Racism, Feb. 2021
  • Gender Justice Fund:
    Tweet: “White supremacy and patriarchy are inextricably linked. We must fight them both on every front. Our hearts are with those affected by the shooting in #Atlanta.”
  • Friends Center’s Twitter list of the organizations here is a great way to find out what your colleagues are doing: https://twitter.com/i/lists/184330795.   

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

Shredding Day: March 19th

Our Preferred company will be visiting Friends Center to shred sensitive documents onsite. You can leave your shredding down by the loading area on the cart that is set up. What is collected will be locked up at night until it is picked up Friday.

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Spring Continuing Sessions

March 23, 7:00pm – 8:30pm

March 26, 6:00pm – 7:30pm

March 27, 9:00am – 4:00pm

Register Here

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Employment Opportunities

The American Friends Service Committee is a Quaker Organization which includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace, and humanitarian service.  Its work is based on the Quaker belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Read more about AFSC’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

For a complete list of open positions, please click here.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

Fair Trade Ministry

This is a video recording of Yoko Koike Barnes’s presentation on her Fair Trade Ministry, offered during the meeting for worship with attention to ministry via Zoom on March 4, 2021.

TENANT NEWS

 

Gender Justice Fund & Scattergood Foundation featured:

Generocity.org: “Does the local nonprofit sector have the collective agency to make change and move us toward just recovery?”

“It is hard to find balance between doing the work and finding the energy and resources to argue at City Hall,” says Farrah Parkes of Gender Justice Fund.

» Continue Reading Here

Witness to Innocence

Featured in National Geographic Magazine:

“Sentenced to death, but innocent:
These are stories of justice gone wrong.”

Since 1973, more than 8,700 people in the U.S. have been sent to death row. At least 182 weren’t guilty—their lives upended by a system that nearly killed them.

» Articles and Photos Here (paywall)

February’s Newsletter – Going Once, Going twice, Sold! Quaker Traditions, Muslim Ban termination, and Black History

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Today I am excited to announce that Friends Center has entered into an agreement with Friends Select School to buy and renovate the 1520 Race Street, the building on the west side of our courtyard.

Check here for details and updates: https://friendscentercorp.org/1520-race-street/ 

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director


AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

E-WASTE RECYCLING DAY: MARCH 4

SustainabilityDid you get new computers or electronic during the pandemic? Do you have old and obsolete items to dispose of? Come on down and recycle your e-waste!

We will collect items March 1–3 in the loading zone, for pickup some time on March 4.

  • Acceptable: Computers, laptops, monitors, printers, mainframe computers or servers, fax machines, copiers, projectors, wire and cables, modems, phones, computer components and parts, computer peripherals, televisions, radios, UPS equipment, network equipment, video equipment, and batteries.
  • Not acceptable: White goods, kitchen appliances, machinery, old media or software.

Stay tuned for a shredding day soon, too!


EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Quaker Traditions Series: Part I – Spiritual Practice

The Quaker Traditions Series is a set of articles on the Quaker faith. In his role as Associate Secretary for Religious Life,  Zachary Dutton has listened deeply to Friends in the community. Working with the PYM staff community engagement team he has provided answers to framing questions for this four-part series. The answers are reflective as opposed to definitive.

                The gift of the Quaker faith is that it is one of continuing revelation, so the article speaks to the ‘here and now’ of our faith even as it is tied to, and reflects, our history and tradition. If you have thoughts on these questions, please share them with Zachary – his email is at the end of this article. He is always looking for new ways to be in relationship with our wider Quaker community. Enjoy article here.

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Biden’s changes to the immigration system explained

Soon after taking office, President Joe Biden began making big changes, including to U.S. immigration policy. These actions work to undo some of the most harmful policies passed by the Trump administration—and lay the groundwork for a more just and humane immigration system.

                We welcome these much-needed changes and the Biden administration’s swift action on these issues. Now we need to keep the momentum up to ensure that the administration continues to support immigrant communities and enact policies that respect the rights and dignity of all people. 

            Here’s where you can find some of the positive changes that Biden has already made and what this means for immigrant communities.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

About Our Meeting (Church)

Central Philadelphia Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends is a large, urban Quaker meeting, diverse in many ways, and we welcome visitors.

  • We worship by gathering and silently waiting for the Spirit to guide us. Learn more about Quaker worship here.
  • We celebrate diversity and welcome people from all walks of life. We are a welcoming and affirming congregation for LGBTQ people.
  • We are also involved in various activities to further peace and social justice.
  • For more information about our meeting, click About in the menu above.
  • What’s happening: See the Google calendar to the right for meeting activities and click Events in the menu above for highlighted events.

TENANT NEWS

ACE Mentor Program

What can we say? 2020 was…quite the year! We’re happy to report that ACE has come out of it perhaps stronger than ever thanks to an amazing board of directors, staff, and 4,000+ incredible volunteers around the country. Even in the face of a global pandemic, ACE’s strongest resource – our mentors – rallied to ensure that deserving students still had access to the best career guidance program in the country!

Community Ventures

Green Building United recently spoke with Patrick Isaac—a newly elected Board Member of GBU—about his career path, experience in the industry, and interest in sustainability. This is what he had to say!

Gender Justice Fund

From Generocity, 1/20/2021:

Nonprofit leaders, mayor react to executive actions that will be issued by President Biden

We reached out to seven local leaders for a quick comment….

        Farrah Parkes, the executive director of the Gender Justice Fund, said that she was “heartened by the speed with which the Biden administration is moving to address the most pressing issues facing the country and reverse some of the most egregious actions of the former President — particularly those related to immigration.”

        “We are well overdue for a coordinated federal response to the pandemic which has claimed over 400,000 lives in the United States,” Parkes added. “It is also gratifying to see swift action on addressing systemic racism and workplace discrimination as well as climate change.”

Read More »

CAIR welcomes President Biden’s Termination of the Muslim Ban

CAIR-Philadelphia Executive Director Jacob Bender said in a press release: “We commend President Biden for immediately moving to repeal the Muslim and African Bans, which is an important first step toward undoing the anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant policies of the previous administration. It is an important fulfilment of a campaign pledge to the Muslim community and its allies.”

Read the full statement here »

Scattergood Foundation:

Want to build skills to tell the story of your organization’s impact? Join the RISE Partnership’s Readiness component.

Read Scattergood’s piece in Generocity here »  


BLACK HISTORY IS AMERICAN HISTORY:

Remembering Bayard Rustin 1912-1987

Bayard Rustin was a black Civil Rights activist, a close associate of Martin Luther King, and an advocate of gay and lesbian rights, and a Quaker.

                Rustin was born in West Chester, Pennsylvania and was brought up by his grandmother, who had been raised as a Quaker.  He himself became a Quaker in 1936, shortly before moving to New York where he lived most of his adult life.  He was a pacifist and a primary influence in bringing non-violent resistance into the American Civil Rights Movement, much inspired by Gandhi’s approach in India.

                In 1941, he joined the pacifist Fellowship of Reconciliation.  He protested against segregation within the armed forces, and worked with the American Friends Service Committee to protect the property of interned Japanese Americans.

                Despite his membership of the Society of Friends (one of the so-called ‘Historic Peace Churches’), Rustin was jailed in 1944 for his conscientious objection to cooperating with the draft.  While in jail, he organised protests against segregated seating in the dining hall.  In a letter to the prison warden, he wrote:

Both morally and practically, segregation is to me a basic injustice. Since I believe it to be so, I must attempt to remove it. There are three ways in which one can deal with an injustice. (a) One can accept it without protest. (b) One can seek to avoid it. (c) One can resist the injustice non-violently. To accept it is to perpetuate it.

Source: Quakers in the World

2021 January Newsletter – Good omens, Inauguration day, The Assault on Democracy

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Is it January 13, 2021? Or more like December 44, 2020? It’s sometimes hard to tell. (Credit for this idea goes to our staff member Teneshia Washington!)

                Personally, whenever I see a raptor, I take that as a good omen. On Jan. 11, a juvenile Cooper’s hawk paused with its lunch on the wall by the front entrance to Friends Center. So I’ve decided to take this as an auspicious sign for the year ahead! (Fun fact: One definition of “auspices” is “observation by an augur especially of the flight and feeding of birds to discover omens,” according to Merriam-Webster.)

                Wishing you all the best in 2021,

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

CLOSED Mon. January 18

In celebration of MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. DAY!

INAUGURATION DAY

We are monitoring the anti-democracy protests being announced in the days leading up to and including Jan. 20, when President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Harris are sworn in. As of now, state and national capitol buildings appear to be the focus. The situation is fluid and uncertain.

                If the local situation in Center City warrants it, we will reduce hours or close altogether.

                We will announce any changes by email and social media.

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

PYM Community Playdates are for Children up through 5th Grade and their Family.

Our January 16 Community Playdate (10:00 am) is a “Meeting for Feelings.” Learn More Here

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Year in review: How you helped us Defund Hate in 2020

On a Facebook Live event in January 2021, AFSC’s Tori Bateman, Benjamin Prado, and Fabiola Davila talked about the need to stop abuses by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Read More Here.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

The History of CPMM

Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting was formed in 1956 when two city meetings—12th Street Meeting and Race Street Meeting—were united. Our building, however, is 100 years older, and has served as a Quaker meetinghouse since it was built in 1856. Continue Here

TENANT NEWS

C.A.I.R.

Jacob Bender, Executive Director of C.A.I.R (The Council on American-Islamic Relations), supports IMPEACHMENT NOW!


GENDER JUSTICE FUND:

Statement on the January 6 attacks

Learn more at https://www.genderjusticephilly.org/.

FRIENDS COUNCIL ON EDUCATION

Here is FCE’s statement on the January 6 attacks.

Quaker Quote

Friends Center December Newsletter

Issue 67, December 2020

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Friends Center staff remains at your service weekdays from 8 am to 6 pm. It is always nice to see you in person whenever you are able to be here.

May the new year bring improved health, justice, and economic outcomes, through all our combined efforts!

P.S. If you are looking for additional help next year, consider hosting a Quaker Voluntary Service (QVS) Fellow. QVS is an 11-month fellowship for young adults at the intersection of social justice, spirituality and community. In the QVS program, young adults work full-time in professional positions. Some of our tenants have benefited from QVS Fellows. Fact sheet attached.

»Site placement application is here.

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER


EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Christmas Eve Meeting for Prayer and Healing : Dec. 24 @ 7:15 pm – 8:30 pm Free

On Christmas Eve 2020 we will have a special Meeting for Prayer and Healing.  We will participate in a guided meditation/prayer in which we open up to divine healing love, and then share it with others.  This will be followed by an opportunity in small groups to share our experiences with each other.  We will close together as a whole group. More information here

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

Download and print AFSC Posters from here!

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Christmas Together in New Ways

Christmas Together in New Ways

Meetings may be seeking to create meaningful Christmas programs that keep Friends connected while also being safe about Covid-19. Two online Conversation Circles were hosted by the Youth Religious Life Coordinator to share ideas and support each other with how to plan for celebrations in this challenging time. Read more here on how to stay connected!

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

CPMM continues to worship via Zoom every Sunday, 11 am – noon!

If you would like the link so you can join Quaker meeting for worship, please contact CPMM Meeting Secretary Dan Zemaitis, office@cpmm.org or (215) 241-7260.

TENANT NEWS

Where a global pandemic increases the struggle

This article from Generocity Philly features the Founding director of PHAN, Antoinette Kraus. Kraus says “After the emergency declaration is over, folks could end up losing benefits because of additional paperwork, they have to submit or things like that,” Kraus said. “It’s really a patchwork fragmented system that has a lot of hoops and barriers for folks to be able to master.”

» Read more here.

Girls INC.

Hello Friends,

We are looking to fill two positions:

Operations Manager and EUREKA! (STEM) Program Manager.  You can see the job descriptions here

Wishing you all a happy, healthy and safe holiday.

Best,

Dena Herrin, Executive Director

Happy Holidays from Singing City!

Enjoy Singing City’s holiday video with choral music, since they cannot hold their traditional holiday performance this year.

https://vimeo.com/489397574

NEIGHBOR NEWS

Becoming an Anti-Racist Quaker Meeting,
Part 1: Preparation

By Carolyn Lejuste and David Etheridge
for Friends General Conference

The work of anti-racism can be costly in ego and in resources. It takes critical humility to look directly at the roots of racism and how we perpetuate it. It is spiritual work that Quakers are familiar with. When we examine our lives and the life of our Meetings through the lens of our testimonies, our experience of the God within us grows and the beloved community thrives.

» Read More Here

Quakers and Christmas:
A Historical and Contemporary Retrospective

December 17, 6:30-7:30 pm

Speaking of Dan Zemaitis, he will give this talk by Zoom. Hosted by Historic Arch Street Meeting House. » Register here.

Friends Center Tenant Newsletter – November 2020

Issue 66

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S NOTE

Greetings and best wishes from 1501 Cherry Street! I hope you are doing well, staying healthy, and staying as engaged in community work as ever, even if it’s taking different forms these days. We certainly have our work cut for us at the city, state, and national levels to build a more just, peaceful, and healthy society for all.

                Meanwhile, thank you for doing what you can to help stop the spread of Covid-19, through working from home as you are able, washing your hands often, wearing a mask, and staying physically distant from people outside your household. Philadelphia’s case numbers are growing, so these guidelines are as important as ever. We are glad to have you as part of our community, we miss you when you’re not here, and we are always happy to see you when you are here in person.

– Chris Mohr, Executive Director

AROUND FRIENDS CENTER

UPDATED GUIDELINES!

We recently updated our Current Guidelines for Return to Friends Center during Modified Green Phase. Please review them.

  • The city recently changed limits for indoor gatherings, so that is updated.
  • Also, we would like to ask each organization to appoint a Pandemic Safety Officer to serve as the lead connecting point for covid-related communications.

EQUITY PARTNER NEWS

AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

How to create a mutual aid network

No matter who won the 2020 U.S. election, we will need mutual aid for our shared well-being. The multiple challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, economic downturn, and continuing white supremacist and state violence in 2020 have been catalysts for communities to come together to help each other when the government can’t or won’t.  When systems fail to protect our survival, many respond by working together to keep their communities safe and healthy through mutual aid.

Solidarity, not charity.

» Continue reading

PHILADELPHIA YEARLY MEETING (PYM)

Personal Stories: Navigating the LGBTQ+ Journey with Loved Ones

November 12 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm

In keeping with the Quaker practice of welcoming all, this event focuses on how individual people successfully navigate gender and other transitions and what we as a society can do to make that easier. Register here.

CENTRAL PHILADELPHIA MONTHLY MEETING (CPMM)

CPMM member in the news:
George Lakey co-founds Choose Democracy

George Lakey is a longtime nonviolent activist who co-founded Choose Democracy. As stated on their website, https://choosedemocracy.us:

“Choose Democracy has one mission: prepare Americans in how to prevent and, if necessary, stop an undemocratic power grab or coup. Our work involves psychological preparation, lessons from history, and strategic sensibility.”

The group was featured in numerous news articles, including in The Guardian, The Atlantic and Waging Nonviolence.

Here’s their most recent update: “None of the [post-election tactics] shows the potential to overturn the election result. There’s a deteriorating democracy, but there’s no coup. Choose Democracy is watching events carefully, but believe the coup attempt is behind us. Meanwhile, we’re pausing our rigorous training schedule unless we see evidence otherwise.” Stay tuned and check back to see what they say as the situation continues to evolve!

TENANT NEWS

  • 10 Philadelphia-area leaders on what’s next for philanthropy,
    including Farrah Parkes, Gender Justice Fund:

3 from Scattergood Foundation:

  • Tia Burroughs, consultant to Rise Partnership (Scattergood Foundation):
    It’s time to start calling out the systems that lead to need for nonprofit programs

“Failing to discuss the reasons why we need equity is not helpful,” says Tia Burroughs, guest columnist from the RISE Partnership (Scattergood Foundation is a member of RISE)

  • What kind of data affects social change and where does it come from?

At ECS’s Forum on Justice & Opportunity, the Scattergood Foundation and Azavea presented projects on understanding needs and assets, and strengthening social programs through data and evaluation. https://generocity.org/philly/2020/11/02/what-kind-of-data-affects-social-change-and-where-does-it-come-from/

  • Eight priorities for Philly’s next behavioral health commissioner

By Scattergood Foundation’s Joe Pyle and Kate Williams

Opinion, The Philadelphia Inquirer (paywall)

https://fusion.inquirer.com/opinion/commentary/philadelphia-department-behavioral-health-intellectual-disability-services-commissioner-20201006.html