Working groups are composed of individuals who dedicate their time to work on a specific area of the Convergence organizing throughout the year, specifically in the months prior to the Convergence. As a grassroots movement, the power is in the people involved! All working groups work closely with many other working groups. Consider signing up for one or more of the following working groups and let your voice be heard:
Bilingual Space Collective
This ongoing working group seeks to work from a framework of language justice. As a hemispheric movement, we are working to center bilingual spaces in our work – everything from having a bilingual (or multilingual!) staff, to creating Spanish and English language media across the Americas. We welcome new folks who are Spanish<>English interpreters and translators to get involved!
Conference & Tabling Working Group
The Conference & Tabling Working Group will help to structure the workshop and tabling space at the Convergence. Aside from coordinating workshop spaces, this group also takes part in plenary planning, as well as envisioning goals and themes for this year, which include a focus on making the conference space inclusive and accessible, as well as an interactive space for people to connect on militarization issues and beyond.
Legal Collective Working Group
The Legal Collective is a group of activists, lawyers, law students and paralegals who offer legal trainings and support during the November vigils and subsequent trials. The legal collective sets up and staffs a legal office and hotline during the vigil weekend, and follows up on any vigil attendees arrested during that time.
Media & Communications Working Group
The media & communications working group is in the process of becoming an ongoing working group. Our mission is to spread the word far and wide about the work of SOA Watch via mainstream and alternative media, and to empower more folks in this grassroots movement to do the same. This work can include pitching reporters and news outlets to cover the issue, writing and placing opinion pieces and letters to the editor, arranging interviews, answering phone calls, editing and coaching local groups, photography, live streaming and filming, as well as spreading the word through social media like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. All experience levels welcome!
Street theater, extravagant political puppets made from the debris of a culture gone mad, channeling your political convictions and creativity into an expression of life affirming resistance, visionary community living and building, feeling integrated into and valued by the SOA Watch community, all this and more is waiting for you simply by joining the Puppetistas!
As in prior years at the vigil at the gates of Fort Benning, a creative, sometimes crazy, certainly zany cast of characters will gather this November in Nogales from around the country, organize themselves as the inspired Puppetistas and create the puppets and pageantry that has become an integral expression of the SOA Watch resistance movement.
You too could be amongst them, building puppets from discarded cardboard, planning, painting, plotting, cooking and eating together, learning to walk on stilts, or how to turn a bucket into a drum to beat the messages of social justice and hope. All are welcome, all are valued. Come for a week, a day, 2 hours, or see us on the days of the rally and find the role for you.
Stage and Program Working Group
Beginning in the early spring of each year, the stage and program working group works to contact speakers, musicians and performers for the Convergence. We help create the program and coordinate music, musicians and speakers.