Two years ago we successfully launched the Strategy and Soul Movement Center and we’ve hosted more than twenty events since its opening. In the Coming year we’d like to move to opening Strategy and Soul Theater and Bookstore on a weekly basis.
During The Pan African Film Festival’s Annual Volunteer Weekend and the Community Organizing Block Party we had Strategy and Soul in full operation, but each time we’ve had to pull from the organizing work. We’re currently opening the Fight for the Soul of the Soul of the Cities office to the public 4 days a week from 10am -2pm. We’ve been able to open the Bookstore, The Theater, and Strategy and Soul Food on special occasions. In the coming year we’d like to move to opening and operating the Strategy and Soul Theater and Strategy and Soul Books on a weekly basis. By funding a new part time assistant who will solely focus on Strategy and Soul, your donation can help us expand our capacity.
At Strategy and Soul we’re looking for ways to expand on our teaching of Black and Latino members critical thinking and organizing through Film analysis and Literature. We’ve had a history of education through film and literature. Eric Mann and the Strategy Center has published over 10 books, reports and pamphlets in the last 20 years. In response to each publication we convene a study group with our core members to become read and expert in order to use the literature in our organizing. We are then responsible for getting the word out about the publication and getting it into the hands of organizers and organizations around the country. For many years the Strategy Center also used the Film Bus Riders Union to teach Working Class Black and Latino members the elements of a successful campaign for Civil Rights.
The system uses multimedia, literate, institutions and more to organize working class Black and Latino people into their own oppression, we want to use Film, Literature, Strategy and Soul, and more to organize Black and Latino people into their own liberation. The Strategy Center is one of the few multi-racial organizations based on Black Intellectual thought. Everyone looks to and recognizes Du bois, Dr. King, Malcolm X, Fannie Lou Hamer, and other Black political intellectuals as experts on liberation theory, and political analysis. We believe there is one reason for the repression of their tradition, and that is building power amongst the most oppressed, and challenging the entire system. This tradition is one of the big themes in our films and books. This year Strategy and Soul has been a center for Ideological debate for the movement. We’ve put on miniature modules of using film and literature as a tool in the organizing process. Unlike other bookstores and theaters, our primary audience are organizers on the ground leading the work. Our goal is to be a center for study, debate, literature, film, service, and politics. One event with Gary Phillips, Eric Mann and Channing Martinez, centered on resistance reflected in pop culture. We all spoke about the films Black Panther and Get out, as well as Gary Phillips’ Book: The Obama Inheritance, all of which provided a space for debate and study on the role of pop culture.
The Strategy Center is working to build the leadership of young Black and Latino folks. In the past two years I’ve learned how to be a facility manager and how it all fits in to the full spectrum of the vision of the Strategy Center. I’ve learned how to operate a professional DCI theater system. I’ve learned many of the elements of event planning and booking. I, Channing Martinez, am ready and able to run a theater, bookstore, and citywide office, but I also Produce Voices from the Frontlines, I’m the Co-lead Organizer of the Fight for the Soul of the Cities, and I assist Eric Mann, our director. As such, I’ve been encouraged to build a team under my leadership. Our long-term goal is to have two full time organizers running strategy and soul under my leadership.
I’m ready to lead and to generously contribute to expand this work, and we need your help.
Please consider your most generous support.
The Strategy Center runs a beautiful state-of-the-art Film Theater/Art Gallery/Bookstore at 3546 Martin Luther King Blvd. where we host the Pan African Film Festival, show films like DOLORES about the life of Dolores Huerta to 100 Black and Latino organizers from Strategy Center and Community Coalition, host book signings like Thandi Chimurenga’s No Doubt: The Murder(s) of Oscar Grant and Victor Wallis’ Red-Green Revolution: The Politics and Technology of Ecosocialism. The Strategy Center has initiated Strategy and Soul Food where we want to operate a pop-up-shop and healthy coffee house.
The Training of a Multi-generational team of some of the best organizers in the U.S.
The Strategy Center and Eric Mann have trained more than 100 organizers through our National School for Strategic Organizing. Many of whom are still with the Strategy Center and others have expanded the influence in the movement through Puente in Phoenix, United Teachers of Los Angeles, Black Lives Matter, Community Voices Heard in New York, and dozens of labor unions and community groups throughout the U.S.
Building a new generation of high school and community college leaders to be part of a multi-generational organizing team.
Today, Associate director Barbara Lott-Holland, Lead organizers Carlos “Elmo Gomez” and Channing Martinez, organizers Stephanie Prieto, Bridgette Amaya, and Kevin Herrera are working with more than 100 students at Roosevelt High School in East L.A. and Augustus Hawkins and Ouchi High School in South LA. These student leaders are building Strategy Center Taking Action Clubs to fight for free public transportation and building a new cadre of the most mature and disciplined young people working in a multi-generational movement with Black veterans of South L.A. and the Strategy Center.
THE SCOPE AND AMBITION OF OUR WORK IS INFINITE BUT OUR FUNDS ARE FINITE
$50,000 CAN MOVE THIS Exciting and Comprehensive Program FORWARD
On May 4, 2019 we will celebrate our 30th anniversary. Please contribute now and join us this and next year as we work to make history together.
Young people working in a multi-generational movement with Black veterans of South L.A. and the Strategy Center.
WE NEED YOUR MOST GENEROUS SUPPORT.