This past Sunday we held our second community event during this pandemic. In March, we created our mutual aid network which has supported closer to 2000 our neighbors in Ridgewood, Glendale, Middle Village and Maspeth. Many of our neighbors have shared with us their anxieties about the future—many of them have been living in isolation and are in extreme amounts of stress because they have been unable to work, pay their rent or had been suffering from COVID 19 symptoms. Through all these challenges, we have been laboring hard to organize our community so that we come out of this pandemic much stronger than before.
If you came to our community assembly at Grover Cleveland Park yesterday, you witnessed how music can bring us all together. Yesterday was a group effort and showed us what’s possible by working collectively. Since it was an unpermitted event, the Parks Department initially was not going to allow us to hold our event. To hold an event with amplification within a city park, you must get a permit from the Parks Department, as well as from the NYPD. But the parks should be for the people! And we shouldn’t have to continue to fund the NYPD, which is a system founded on white supremacy. We spoke our truth yesterday, and those with power to shut our event down saw that what we were doing was not malicious—we were there to empower our community. And after all, it is our right to protest and our duty to speak up against all injustices.
A huge thank you to Morgan Greenstreet aka modrums, Mark Yoshizumi, Mic Bikes NYC and all our members from the Ridgewood Tenants Union who made yesterday possible—that’s Luisa, Ruben, Nova, Gina, the Campos family, Lizzie, Brian, Ian, Bailey, Luisa, Laura, Keara, Alex, Tommy, Juna, the Gil family, Stacie, Ady, Reuben, Tousif, Andrea, Jackie, Jade, Saki, Vanessa, Astrid and everyone who shared the event and sent their good vibes. A special thank you to all the incredible bands, musicians and DJs that blessed us with their music and sounds—DJ Espiral, DJ tres dos, IMANI, Lollise, Yas Queen Selectress, Bikash Kharel, Aditya Lama, and Bulla en el Barrio.
All the positive vibes from everyone that attended and from the beautiful music helped get us closer to our goal of creating real community from the bottom up! Through everyone’s generous donations, we were able to raise a total of $1063. All of these donated funds will be going straight to purchasing groceries and other urgent items to families in our neighborhood that are most in need of support. Thank you all so much for being a part of our labor of love and we hope you’ll continue to connect with us and help us build people power.
Here is a short compilation from yesterday: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_33YbA8dkg