Join Us on Delegation!

STAND IN SOLIDARITY AND SEIZE INCREDIBLE DELEGATION OPPORTUNITIES WITH WITNESS FOR PEACE!


Honduras
July 16-25, 2016
Learning from Indigenous and Afro-Indigenous Leaders in the Face of Ecological, Economic and State Violence  

Accompany, learn from, and stand with Honduran social movements resisting violence and oppression by U.S.-backed Honduran state security forces, U.S.- and internationally-funded “development” projects, and neoliberal “free trade” policies since the 2009 U.S.-backed coup d’état.

Colombia Sept. 6-15, 2016.
“Post-Accords is Not Post-Conflict” : Support a Just and Inclusive Peace Process

Despite a historic peace accord, progressive social movements in Colombia advocate for a more integral understanding of peace: sustainable peace with justice, the deconstruction of systems of inequality, impunity, and injustice.

Puerto Rico Nov. 4-12, 2016
Boricua: The Hidden Colony

The fight for Puerto Rican sovereignty is centuries’ old. Currently Puerto Ricans are facing bankruptcy and alarmingly high rates of unemployment. Their status as a U.S. commonwealth leaves them without a vote and voice in their nation’s political future. Learn more about the devastating effects of US foreign policy and colonization in Puerto Rico. Stand in solidarity with the people of Puerto Rico as they continue their fight for their independence against US intervention and militarization.

Cuba  Dec. 27, 2016-Jan 4, 2017
New Years in Havana: Cuban Socialism and Cultural Resilience

Come and learn about Cuba’s social institutions like schools, hospitals and cultural centers on the Revolution’s anniversary of and celebrate their cultural resilience and the New Year! Engage with organic farmers, community organizers, educators and artists. This delegation will also visit museums, galleries, studies and attend Cuban performing artist shows. Expect to learn about the important of arts and culture in Cuban society and its revolutionary development.

TAKE ACTION: 

Youth Delegation Scholarship Fund: If you’d like to contribute to help a young organizer participate in a delegation, you can donate online here.

For more delegation info and/or an application: Please contact either Jeanette Charles or Malia Everette. For additional information about scholarship opportunities and fundraising assistance email jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com.

Stand in Solidarity with the Bolivarian Revolution and Learn More about the Afro Venezuelan Struggle this May!

 

AfroVenezuela: History and Culture Delegation

May 21-30, 2016

Before the Bolivarian Revolution, Afro-Venezuelan people and their history were marginalized and erased from Venezuelan society. Along with International Workers’ rights, May also celebrates Afro-Venezuelan history and is full of commemorative events marking the significant political, cultural and social contributions of the African Diaspora and the specific struggles of Afro-descendants in Venezuela. Delegates will meet with grassroots Afro-Venezuelan organizers, cultural leaders and participate in local events while also learning about state institutions that work toward challenging institutional racism. Learn how Afro-Venezuelans have secured significant rights with the Bolivarian Revolution and continue to build an anti-racist Venezuelan society today.

Cost: This delegation fee covers all set-up preparation, 2 meals per day, housing accommodations, interpreters, transportation within the country and a trained delegation coordinator. The feel also covers extensive reading and activist tools before and after the delegation. $1950 excluding international airfare. Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $150 is due by March 14, 2016. Limited space available—Apply early!

For more information: Jeanette Charles, Witness for Peace Southwest 805-669-VIVA or jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com or Malia Everette at 415-735-5407 or malia@altruvistas.com. For additional information about scholarship opportunities and fundraising assistance email jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com or Tanya Hartley at southwestwfp@gmail.com.

 

Celebrate May Day in Cuba!

TRAVEL TO CUBA!

w/ Witness for Peace Southwest

Celebrate May Day in Cuba: Labor and Community Organizing from the Ground Up!

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This delegation will engage participants in the history of Cuba’s progressive politics favoring the poor. Since the historic concurrent announcements by Presidents Obama and Castro on December 17, 2014 that both countries would undertake a new course on the path towards normalized relations in no other time has there been more interest in Cuba, its history, cultural and political landscape. With Witness for Peace Southwest celebrate alongside the Cuban people on International Worker’s Day in Havana. The Cuban people are at the forefront of people’s movements in the Americas and we invite you to come to Cuba and see this reality first-hand.

While on delegation, you will meet with a variety of organizations that have worked over the last several decades to build a new society which favors the poor, encourages participation and offers opportunities for all Cuban citizens. Learn more about Cuba’s commitment to education, healthcare and social justice. This is a historic time to bear witness to the dramatic changes taking place in our hemisphere. Please join Witness for Peace Southwest for what promises to be a remarkable time to celebrate Cuba’s revolutionary spirit, past and present!

This delegation is sponsored by the human rights organization Witness for Peace Southwest and Altruvistas, a socially responsible and philanthropic travel company.  

Contact:  For more information and applications contact: Witness for Peace Southwest Regional Organizer Jeanette Charles at 805-669-VIVA or jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com and/or Malia Everette at 415-735-5407 or malia@altruvistas.com. For additional information about scholarship opportunities, sliding scale costs based on income and fundraising assistance contact Jeanette and/or Tanya Hartley at southwestwfp@gmail.com.  

Cost: The price of this delegation is $2350 without international airfare and $2950 with airfare included from Miami. The deadline to apply with a non-refundable deposit of $200 has been extended to March 14, 2016. Limited space available—please apply early! The fee covers all set-up preparation, 2 meals per day, 3 star housing accommodations in double rooms, interpreters, transportation within country, a trained delegation coordinator, and honoraria for our speakers.  

 

In Solidarity with the People of Haiti

 

Below, Witness for Peace Southwest shares the following statement circulated by the Haitian Grassroots movement via Oakland based Haiti Action Committee. Tens of thousands of Haitians have taken to the streets demanding the annulment of the fraudulent elections. Haitians have poured out into the streets braving police brutality, tear gas and assassination. As the Haiti Action Committee writes “the struggle for the right to vote and for all Haitians to participate in the political process continues.”

Register for our Latin American Liberation Webinar Series!

Witness for Peace Southwest presents a six session webinar series highlighting movements across Latin America and the Caribbean that are fighting for their self-determination, autonomy, peace and human rights. Speakers will include members of Witness for Peace Southwest, International Teams and partners on the ground throughout the region. We hope you will join us for these discussions. When possible, sessions may also be available in Spanish.

We have confirmed the following sessions on: Colombia, Cuba, Venezuela, Honduras and Latin America’s defense of the Earth.

For additional information, please contact Regional Organizer Jeanette Charles at: jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com, (805) 669.8482

You can register here: http://goo.gl/forms/xAIO3rpUW7

Angelinxs Call for U.S. Guantanamo Base Out of Cuba!

On January 24, a Witness for Peace Southwest delegation protested outside of Fort MacArthur, a former U.S. military air force base in San Pedro, California.

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The action came one day after WfPSW’s 2016 opening event, Latin America 2016: People’ Power and Popular Democracies in the Face of US Imperialism.

Here are some pics documenting the night’s events:


Please keep posted for upcoming events, actions and delegations.

In peace and solidarity,

Jeanette

On behalf of Witness for Peace Southwest

 

 

WfPSW Welcomes a New RO!

WFPSW welcomes a new Regional Organizer!

Introducing Jeanette Charles!

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Jeanette comes to WFPSW with loads of Latin America and Witness for Peace experience. For 2 years now Jeanette has served on the Witness for Peace Southwest board of directors. Jeanette is a journalist, organizer, popular educator and queer woman of color raised in working class Black and Brown Los Angeles. The basis of her continued work draws from histories of resistance and revolution across the Americas especially from the legacy of the Haitian Revolution and other Black maroon led rebellions. Members of Jeanette’s paternal family left Haiti during the Duvalier dictatorship as part of a great exodus of Haitians in the 1960s and 70s. Jeanette self-identifies as Black/African descent and specifically as a daughter of the Haitian diaspora. Jeanette is fluent in English and Spanish and grew up in a largely Mexican/Central American neighborhood. In the last five years Jeanette has lived in Venezuela and has extensive travel and cross cultural experiences throughout the Americas.

Most recently, Jeanette worked as a journalist for the Latin American based international news channel, teleSUR in Quito, Ecuador. Much of Jeanette’s analysis is attributed to the delegations and political exchanges she has organized with the Chiapas Support Committee to Haiti, Colombia, Venezuela, Guatemala, Mexico and Honduras with grassroots movements. Jeanette’s senior thesis was on the Honduran Resistance to the Coup in 2009-2010 where she spent several months on the ground researching and establishing relationships with organizers and community leaders documenting people’s struggles. Jeanette is currently pursuing a PHD from the Bolivarian University of Venezuela.

In the United States, Jeanette’s work has focused primarily on building Black and Brown unity and organizing against mass incarceration as well as state violence.

Jeanette is starting off as part time staff with Witness for Peace Southwest until funds are raised to increase Jeanette’s hours as a full time organizer. Jeanette is exited to plan a full calendar of events, delegations to Venezuela, Colombia, Mexico, Honduras and Cuba and bring speakers from Latin America in 2016. The board of directors of WfPSW welcomes Jeanette!

Feel free to welcome her and ask her how you can get involved. Jeanette’s email is jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com or call 805-669-VIVA.

 

Want to lead a WfPSW Delegation?

 

Do you want to lead a delegation with WfPSW? We are currently looking for delegation coordinators for some of our delegations next year and in 2017.

If you have experience with popular education pedagogy, solidarity with Latin America and organizing group travel please consider working with us!

Contact Jeanette Charles at jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com or at 805-669-VIVA for more information.

WfPSW Announces 2016 Delegations

Consider joining Witness for Peace Southwest on one of our international and national delegations in 2016!

Delegation fees cover all set-up preparation, 2 meals per day, housing accommodations, interpreters, transportation within the country and a trained delegation coordinator. The feel also covers extensive reading and activist tools before and after the delegation. Limited space is available—Apply early!

For more information and an application please contact: Witness for Peace Southwest Regional Organizer Jeanette Charles at 805-669-VIVA or jcharles.wfpsw@gmail.com or Malia Everette at 415-735-5407 or malia@altruvistas.com. For additional information about scholarship opportunities and fundraising assistance contact Jeanette Charle or Tanya Hartley at southwestwfp@gmail.com.

WfPSW has experience organizing delegations to countries throughout the region including Honduras, Colombia and Mexico. If you would like to organize a delegation for your organization, school or community group through Witness for Peace Southwest, please contact Jeanette Charles, Tanya Hartley or Malia Everette (information provided above).

 

MEXICO-U.S. BORDER March 19-26, 2016: Impacts of US War on Drugs on the Mexico/US Border

Learn more about the Impacts of the US War on Drugs in Southern California and along the Mexico-U.S. border. We will meet with organizations challenging the prison industrial complex, fighting against massive deportations and creating alternatives to free trade. Contact Jeanette Charles for more information regarding this delegation’s overall cost.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $150 is due by January 18, 2016

 

CUBA April 24- May 3,  2016: Celebrate May Day in Cuba:  Labor and Community Organizing from the Ground Up

Join the Cuban people on International Worker’s Day in Havana, Cuba! Join us for what promises to be a remarkable time to celebrate Cuba’s revolutionary spirit, past and present!

Cost: $2350 without international airfare and $2950 with airfare included from Miami.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $200 is due by February 28, 2016.

 

VENEZUELA  May 21-30, 2016: Afro-Venezuelan History and Culture    

May is Afro-Venezuelan history month and is full of events marking the significant political, cultural and social contributions of the African Diaspora and the specific struggles of Afro-descendants in Venezuela. Learn how Afro-Venezuelans have secured significant rights with the Bolivarian Revolution and continue to build an anti-racist Venezuelan society today.

Cost: $1950 excluding international airfare.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $150 is due by March 14, 2016.

 

VENEZUELA  July 21-31, 2016: The Bolivarian Revolution: From Simon to Hugo  

From Simon Bolivar to Hugo Chavez, the Bolivarian Revolution has evolved into building an inclusive society where all Venezuelans participate. Delegates will learn first-hand the ways and means of Venezuelan democracy, providing a unique opportunity to witness how public policies and grassroots organizing come together.

Cost: $1950 excluding international airfare.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $150 is due by May 16, 2016.
PUERTO RICO  Nov. 4-12, 2016:  Boricua: The Hidden Colony $1850 

Their status as a U.S. commonwealth leaves them without a vote and voice in their nation’s political future. Stand in solidarity with the people of Puerto Rico as they continue their fight for their independence against US occupation and militarization.

Cost: $1850 excluding airfare.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $150 is due by August 15, 2016.

 

CUBA  Dec. 27, 2016-Jan 4, 2017: New Years in Havana:  Cuban Socialism and Cultural Resilience  

Learn about the Cuban people’s revolutionary history and cultural resilience while also celebrating the New Year! Expect to learn about the importance of arts and culture in Cuban society and its revolutionary development.

Cost: $2850 without international airfare and $3450 with airfare included from Miami.

Deadline: Application with a non-refundable deposit of $200 is due by  September 26, 2016.

An Urgent Request from Gail Phares, Founder-Witness for Peace

Gail

Dear friend,

I come to you with an urgent plea. Whether you have been a Witness for Peace supporter for 30 years or 30 days, I am asking you to help the Witness for Peace Regions in a moment of critical need.

Please send a special gift to Witness for Peace Southwest today to support our important peace and justice work when it matters most.

As you may know, I’ve dedicated most of my adult life to the work of Witness for Peace. I helped found WFP in 1983 to support innocent civilians in Nicaragua faced with the brutal war waged by US-funded Contras. I have since led over 50 WFP delegations into war zones and places of injustice and popular resistance.

I have been there when WFP accompanied Guatemalan war refugees; supported Mexican communities facing armed conflict, unjust trade and a senseless drug war; stood with Cubans calling for an end to a brutal blockade; joined with Haitians calling for economic justice; and provided nonviolent support to Colombians working for peace.

You know how powerful WFP’s work is. But today I come to you as a founder because WFP is struggling. The Great Recession and increasing inequality in the United States have diminished the disposable income available to progressive organizations. Our membership is declining as people have turned their attention to other parts of the world, focusing on the Middle East and other pressing issues.

These–and other factors–have lead to financial challenges that mean WFP has to reduce its staffing, something we are already doing. But it has also created an acute cash-flow problem that we need your help to overcome.

The Witness for Peace Regions are the vital part of WFP that brings Latin American issues to your doorstep and to the doorstep of our congress. WFP Regions bring Latin American speakers to your area, they invite you to travel with them on human rights missions and help you advocate with your congressional representatives to change US policies.

The summer months have been especially hard for our organization, which is why I would like to ask you to make a donation of $15 or more today, when WFP needs it most.

 At this time we need all of the WFP community to rally around the WFP Regions, lending support.

You know as well as I do that WFP’s work in Latin America and the United States continues to be crucially important.

Witness for Peace Southwest just finished leading a delegation to Honduras investigating the roots of the child migration crisis. WFPSW has responded to the crisis in Venezuela with 3 fact finding delegations and 3 live webinars to advocate against US sanctions on Venezuela. We continue to oppose the US embargo on Cuba by bringing US citizens and Cubans together in people to people exchanges.

A Lenca indigenous leader on the front lines for peace and justice in Honduras and a key WFPSW partner, recently said something that explains the importance of WFPSW’s work much better than I can:

“The international solidarity and advocacy work carried out by groups like Witness for Peace is saving lives in Honduras. Now the US Embassy calls me once a week to see if I am okay, this is because of your efforts.”


You know WFP’s work standing with human rights defenders is crucial throughout Latin America. That is why I hope you will join me in making a special contribution to Witness for Peace Southwest in this time of incredible need.
In deep gratitude,

Gail signature

Gail Phares, Witness for Peace co-founder
P.S. Witness for Peace Southwest needs your support now more than ever. Please click here to donate now!