How Listening to Experiences Builds Power

Burri in Khartoum – Burri Barricades

Stephanie and Michael welcome three guests this week on Nonviolence Radio. First, they talk to Katherine Hughes-Fraitekh and Steve Chase about their work together in Solidarity 2020 and Beyond. Responding to the isolation and suffering caused by COVID, Solidarity 2020 and Beyond offers hope and support to grassroots activists and organizations, providing them opportunities to network, to learn from each other and to collaborate through webinars and trainings. Solidarity 2020 and Beyond draws on the power inherent in sharing experiences and using them to educate and increase solidarity amongst all those who are striving — nonviolently —  to bring about change for good, wherever in the world they may be.

…what we’re trying to do is to be driven by the grassroots activists, extremely flexible to respond to their needs, and not create an organization but realize there are amazing groups out there – Beautiful Trouble, ICNC, the Einstein Institute, Nonviolent Peaceforce, Metta Center, Waging Nonviolence, all the groups that are working on these issues. And African Youth Movement, Africans Rising – we’re very closely connected with them. And just trying to help bring groups together and find ways to do critical learning, research, and really spread the knowledge both to people that are doing the work on the ground as people learn from each other.

…for the vast majority of people in the world that are not directly involved, but may be very hopeless right now, letting them know these amazing things are happening, and these amazing courageous people are out there changing the world for the better. It’s not time to give up hope, but really to have a vision for a better future. And that is possible.

Katherine Hughes-Fraitekh

The inspiring conversation with Katherine and Steve is followed by an equally powerful discussion with Mubarak Elamin, a Sudanese activist supporting the movement in Sudan. Mubarak talks about the astounding strength and courage of the Sudanes people, their determination to stand up for what they need, often risking their lives, working for peace and change:

We’re actually learning from the streets of Sudan. It’s amazing, the creativity and how people are committed to – first, they’re committed to nonviolence and peaceful protest – peaceful actions. And the second thing they are doing also, organizing. And the third thing they are doing is also being really media savvy…

And they just demonstrate that day in and day out. They’re speaking about, “We’re not out for bread. We’re not out for lower prices of gas. We’re out for our own freedom and to bring about some other high-level values to our life and to our people.” And they’re so determined to do that. So, it’s just really like when you see these, read these stories, it’s just heartfelt. The stories that all of these kids – I will call them heroes and warriors in a way or the other.

Mubarak Elamin

From all three guests this week, we see the power that comes when we actively listen to and connect with others. Every community, every person has its experience, and when diverse experiences are brought together, when they are heard and shared, they become a resource, an exhilarating force for change.

Transcript archived at Waging Nonviolence

× Comments are closed.