Report to our Membership for 2019:
Dear Members of the MPT Family:
We are excited to share with you two of the expansion efforts of the
MPT community: Border teams to Mexico and creation of Hubs
across the U.S.
Border Teams: Tens of thousands of refugees from around the world
are seeking legal asylum at our southern border. Their lives are at
risk from sex traffickers, gangs, and drug cartels both in their country
of origin and as they wait at the border in Mexico. We have sent
three MPT Unarmed Civilian Protection peace teams to Tijuana in
the last 12 months. We have seen many families living on the streets facing severe shortage of resources as they wait for the opportunity to make their case for asylum. Our partner in Tijuana is Al Otro Lado (AOL - “To the Other Side”), where refugees are welcomed and offered medical attention, legal aid, a simple meal, and some of the basic necessities required for living on the streets. Our teams ensure that traffickers, etc. do not enter the AOL building, that every guest is greeted warmly, and that they are safely accompanied to their appointments. Kim Redigan, who has served on two of our border teams, writes, “Meta Peace Team witnessed the violence of an immigration system that criminalizes asylum seekers and puts up harsh borders between people, which is in violation of international and domestic law.” Recently, we’ve been asked to place additional teams in other cities along the border, including Juarez, Mexicali and Brownsville. With your help, we will continue to send peace teams to both the U.S./Mexico border and to Palestine.
Hubs: In response to the rise of fear and violence in our own country, and increased requests for local Peace Teams, Meta Peace Team has expanded across the country by developing Hubs. Hubs are groups of volunteers in general geographic areas who identify with and are doing the work of MPT. They extend MPT principles, networking, violence de-escalation skills training and Domestic Peace Team placements in their communities. We have added hubs in Southern California/the Border Area, the capital area of New York, and Connecticut to our established hubs in Lansing, Detroit, Northern Michigan, Washtenaw County, Norther California/the SF Bay area, and Roanoke, Virginia. In October, we were able to bring together key volunteers from all the Hubs for a weekend retreat to strengthen our ties and chart our course moving forward, then hired a Hub Coordinator to support growth and expansion of Hubs.
Requests for teams (both international and domestic), presentations, trainings, and collaborations, keep coming in. Your continued generous support makes it possible for us to say “YES” to many of these requests. We need $120,000 to maintain our work. And if we had more, we could do more.
What speaks to your heart?: Teams, Hubs, trainings, office support, financial stability? Meta Peace Team is able to do what we do best - - creating alternatives to violence in volatile situations – - only because of the moral and financial support we receive from you: the person who gives what you can because you believe the dream of peace is possible. We greatly appreciate your generous financial gift today.
We join you in the hope for a future filled with peace.
Elliott Adams, Ellen Burkhardt OP, Suzanne Camino, C. Peter Dougherty, Stephen Gasteyer, Anna Malavisi, Lulu Nestor, Paul Pratt, Kim Redigan, Pat Valaer, Joan Wages, Sheri Wander, Mark Zussman, Mary Hanna, Melody Arnst, Mary Ashley, and Stephan Niamke
The MPT Core Community and Staff