Mobilizing Resources for the Movement: Reflections from my first year at UFE

UFE's Resource Mobilization Director, Sara Sargent, shares the story of how she got here while looking back on a transformative year.

Reflecting on my first year at United for a Fair Economy, I’m thankful to be part of the UFE team. I feel that now, more than ever, we need each other and we need grassroots organizations like UFE to stand up to greed, injustice and rising inequality in our communities.

As someone with inherited wealth who believes in dismantling systems of capitalism and oppression that made my family’s accumulation of wealth possible, I’m grateful to have found a political home that is building cross-class solidarity and encouraging wealthy people to speak out against inequality. You can learn more about my story by reading my bio on our website.

A few months ago I moved into a new position at UFE – from Development and Operations Associate to Resource Mobilization Director – and I’m so excited to connect with the UFE community all across the country. I really enjoy meeting the folks that share our vision for economic justice and are giving to support the growth of our work. (Please contact me at ssargent@faireconomy.org if you would like to connect and learn about how to support us!) 

All new UFE staff members are asked to attend one of our Training for Trainers retreats, so I was lucky enough to be a participant in our Spring training in Massachusetts and witness the transformative space that is created by our popular eductators Jeannette, Eroc and Riahl. 

Something that stood out to me was hearing from so many organizers attending that they have never attended a leadership training before because other trainings were too expensive or were only facilitated in English. The fact that we give full scholarships to many of the folks that attend our trainings, and we also hire expert simultaneous interpreters for the 4 day long retreats is something unique and powerful we provide for the movement. Understanding this, as well as the impact of all our programs, really motivated me to step into the role of the Resource Mobilization Director.

For me, resource mobilization is about more than just fundraising. It’s about building relationships with others that share our values – justice, equity, reparations, community care and collective liberation. And it’s about asking folks to share the many kinds of resources we have to offer, like time, energy, connections and creativity, as well as money, to build the economic justice movement.

Through collectively mobilizing resources to power United for a Fair Economy’s work, we accomplished so much together in 2019. I’m celebrating that our donors and partners made it possible for UFE to:

  • Support efforts to pass a comprehensive and inclusive minimum wage bill through the popular education Training Network we are facilitating in North Carolina.
  • Boost the resources available for our work with immigrant-led organizations fighting for dignity and self-determination.
  • Fund the facilitation of healing justice circles that provide community leaders with practices to build resilience and heal from the trauma of systemic injustice.
  • Create scholarships for organizers to attend our popular education Training for Trainers (TOT) at the Highlander Center and upcoming TOT leadership retreat in Minnesota.
  • And much more!

Our work is needed and in demand more than ever in this intense political and social climate. We are approaching 2020 with boldness by standing up to rising inequality and oppressive policies, and supporting grassroots leaders that are creating transformative change across the country. UFE gives me, and so many of us, hope that people have the power to change the rules of our economy. You are part of this work and I hope you feel moved to leverage the resources you have to offer to help us grow. The moment is now to support the fight for a fair economy! 

Thank you and looking forward to getting to know you!

Sara Sargent

 


 

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