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Tuesday
Nov232010

Bozone, Frozone, from the Ozone - I'm Home!

Bridger Mountain Range near Bozeman, Montana.

Forecast tomorrow includes light snow, high: -2°F (-19°C); low: -15°F (-26°C). Let's ski, skate, snowshoe, and sled!

Tuesday
Nov232010

Communities in Common

Out and Equal Workplace Advocates

Out & Equal is proud to announce a new guest writer series, "Communities in Common." This series profiles observations, experiences and events of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender members of culturally diverse communities.

Adam Bad Wound | November 23, 2010

Adam C. Bad Wound is a sociologist of philanthropy and civil society, as well as a donor to Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. As November is National Native American Heritage Month, Adam shares his experiences and thoughts on LGBT youth in American Indian and rural communities.

I come from Montana’s Big Sky Country, where the Great Plains meet the Rocky Mountains. I was raised near three rivers, with crystal clear waters and lush emerald banks, surrounded by ruby willows, under the warm golden sun, sparkling bright in the sapphire sky. My youth was precious, picturesque, and prismatic.

However, many of my hardest memories are of colorless isolation, as I struggled to find my identity in a world that seemed to be black-and-white in so many ways. At times, being a queer American Indian felt like the worst of all possible situations.

According to 2009 Census figures, there were approximately 3.15 million American Indians in the U.S., out of 307 million people – roughly 1% of the population. From 1999 to 2004 (when I was 19-24), American Indian/Alaska Native males in the 15 to 24 year old age group had the highest suicide rate, roughly 28/100,000, compared to 17.5/100,000 for white, 12.8/100,000 for black, and 9/100,000 Asian/Pacific Islander males of the same age. Furthermore, a 2007 study found that LGBT youth are up to four times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers.

Taken together, it’s hard for me to reconcile these figures, but easy to understand them personally. Geographic and social isolation were harsh realities of my youth, at times to the point of desperation. In light of recent cyber-bulling events, I can certainly understand how some youth – from any background – might feel trapped in a dark place.

To youth in American Indian and rural communities, I encourage you to remember that LGBT people come from everywhere. My journey has taken me from the mountains, to the plains, Great Lakes, Atlantic Coast, and Pacific Coast. I’ve come to know firsthand that LGBT people come from the middle of nowhere to the middle of San Francisco.

Finally, although it’s been said many times recently, it’s important to remember that you are not alone. Although our community is small, there are plenty of resources for support, online and offline. I’m thankful to have embraced my spirit for its natural way, in part by attending gatherings, researching information, and connecting online. Doing so might not change your immediate situation, but it might add a splash of color to a dark night.

Just remember: somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue.

More resources to support LGBT and American Indian LGBT youth include:

 

 

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See the original post and other guest writer contributions: http://www.outandequal.org/communitiesincommon/

Friday
Nov192010

Donation Recommendation: The Seasons Fund for Social Transformation

Seasons Fund for Social Transformation

Mission:

The Seasons Fund For Social Transformation catalyzes vibrant and effective social change movements by coupling the power of personal transformation with the public work of creating a just and sustainable world.

Method:

The Seasons Fund makes grants to help agents of social change view themselves, their work, and the world around them in a new light. Specifically, the Fund supports opportunities for reflection and training aimed at fostering personal transformation, building leadership skills, promoting organizational development, forging effective coalitions, and cultivating new ways of envisioning society. The Fund also supports efforts to evaluate the impact of contemplative practices on social change initiatives.

My Motivation:

I support the Seasons Fund for Social Transformation because they support people working for social, economic, and environmental justice to embrace a range of contemplative practices that can deepen their capacity to lead.

The Seasons Fund believes that cultivating a rich inner life is both a worthy end in itself and an overlooked pathway to heightening the impact, effectiveness, and sustainability of social change initiatives. In addition, their website offers case studies that are practical and informative. The case studies illuminate their work in building awareness, getting results, and making connections.

I encourage you to donate to the Seasons Fund for Social Transformation because peaceful giving begins with the personal transformation of our leaders, building effective coalitions, and new ways of envisioning society. 

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“Donation Recommendation” will be a regular feature on this blog with a simple concept:  whenever I decide to donate to or volunteer with an organization, I’m going to write about why I have chosen to give my support. Doing so documents my philanthropic investments, volunteering, and donation motivation, as well as spreads the word about organizations that I support. In particular, I am on a mission to fund (whenever possible) organizations that actively engage both social and environmental projects together.

Sunday
Nov142010

Book Review: Small Change by Michael Edwards

Small Change: Why Business Won't Save the WorldSomtimes I think, "If I wanted to go into business, I would have gone into business..."

It seems often forgotten that many people – myself included – make an active decision to avoid politics and business. We have a variety of motivations and missions, but we seek change that comes beyond convention. Nonprofit… nonpartisan… we are defined by what we are not. And I think that’s great.

I am reminded of the special nature of civil society as I read Small Change: Why Business Won’t Save the World by Michael Edwards. The primary purpose of the book, in my view, is to be practical by raising challenging questions about the role of business in progressive social change. In response to a wave of “Philanthrocapitalism” (a la Matthew Bishop, Michael Green, et tout le monde), Edwards provides an analysis and critique of the movement, as well as an argument for what he calls “Citizen Philanthropy.”

Edwards sums his message early in the preface, when he argues against a "business-is-best" philosophy:

"That's an attractive proposition, but also a dangerous mirage. Can we compete ourselves into a more cooperative future, or consume our way to conserve the planet's scarce resources, or grow grow our way to out of deep-rooted poverty and oppression, or fight our way to peace?" ..."The claim that business thinking can save the world is a convenient myth for those who occupy positions of great wealth and power; and the constant celebration of the rich and famous individuals is a dangerous distraction from the hard, public work of finding solutions, all of us together" (p. xi). 

“Social transformation is not a job to be left to market forces or to the whims of billionaires. Perhaps if we supported the energy and creativity of millions of ordinary people, we could create a foundation for lasting progress that will never come through top-down planning by a new global elite, however well intentioned. When this principle is accepted and philanthropy is reconfigured to be less technocratic and more supportive of people’s own self-development efforts, then change will come – larger than we can control, quicker than we can imagine, and deeper than we could ever hope for by reducing everything to market forces” (pp. xiii-xiv).

To be fair, it seems that his message is meant to provoke debate. He isn’t suggesting that market forces are always inappropriate as a tool to advancing social change. However, he does argue that it can be detrimental to always use market forces in a blind manner.

I was able to hear Edwards speak about the book at an event with Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP) – Bay Area Chapter in early Novemeber, 2010. Speaking to a group of young professionals, aspects of his message seemed to encourage our dedication to advancing social change, no matter the method. He suggested that we think critically about when markets (and associated tools) are appropriate and inappropriate.

I found the book to be an extremely interesting, quick read with some powerful and profound points. Coupled with a re-reading of Philanthrocapitalism, it’s worth knowing these perspectives and the arguments these authors make. Keep in mind that the dialogue is friendly, as you can watch Michael Edwards and Matthew Bishop debate on YouTube:

Sunday
Nov072010

General Disclaimer

This site’s media (written, photography, video, etc.) is generally used for informational purposes only and serves no commercial or political purpose. The site is personal in nature and is meant to reflect the scholarly research interests of Adam C. Bad Wound. Interests are subject to change, revision and removal. 

 Adam makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, timeliness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis. Affiliations are provided for identification purposes only and do not imply any representation on behalf of past and present employers, associates, and organizations.

Monday
Nov012010

Welcome to www.badwound.org

In times of crises in education and the environment, it is important for philanthropy and civil society to collaborate in ways that integrate environmental sustainability and social prosperity together.

people + planet @ peace reflects my ideas on peaceful philanthropy, a strategic approach to giving that leverages resources for equal benefit to people and the planet. 

The inspiration for this site is based on Lakota messagemitakuye oyas'in - all are related. My goal is to use this site to offer helpful knowledge, practical insights, and links to creative digital media on a variety of issues that interest me, including:

 People (Education)

  • Education Equity and Opportunity
  • Public Service and Citizenship
  • Health and Wellness
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences

 Planet (Environment)

  • Energy and Resources
  • Pollution and Extinction
  • Conservation and Protection
  • Climate Change and Sustainability
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