Richmond Zine Fest, the zine community, and DIY culture as a whole do not exist in an apolitical bubble now or ever. With that in mind, we’re excited to announce that the following groups will be available, sharing their valuable presence, information, and resources with Richmond communities as zine fest visitors and library patrons enter the Richmond Public Library. We are incredibly grateful to have them. Please stop by their tables and learn what you can do to get involved and/or support their actions.
From their website: “Electric Dirt seeks to celebrate queer voices from Appalachia and the South. Our desire to claim our own labels, re-imagine our childhood myths, share our own stories, and create a better, safer world for all manifests itself in-between art and activism. The art we share and show is political; the way we show up and resist in spite of all that seeks to invalidate or erase our existence is art.
“The concept of Queer Appalachia grew and evolved over the past year, a new name for the project materialized. As the group of contributors to this work expanded, we found ourselves no longer contained to just Appalachia, but the region of the South as well. These two areas, while having so many distinct differences, also contain many socio-cultural similarities, especially in regards to queer community. Whether in the coalfields of West Virginia or the forests of the long-leaf pine, the earth beneath us queers committed to collective liberation buzzes. We find ourselves both energized and grounded by that electric dirt.”
This fall, Richmond Zine Fest will be one of their stops on their Harm Reduction Tour, throughout which they will make available the following: narcan, home HIV tests, fentanyl test strips, Plan B, needles, sharp containers, shooting kits, cookers, condoms, lube, tampons, pads, female condoms, and so much more 100% FREE and without judgement and only with the intention of keeping our communities safe. They are teaming up with Oates to include indigenous communities along the route. If you would like to support them on this mission, please contribute to their fundraising by sending money to their venmo @queer-appalachia or their paypal account at email@example.com.
Via their website: “The Richmond Doula Project is a collective of full-spectrum doulas in Richmond, VA.” Their mission is “To offer support and education to people through all pregnancy outcomes, centering POC, LGBTQI, and other underserved communities.” Their vision is “Safe, inclusive, accessible reproductive health support for every member of our community.” Please stop by their table, learn more about their services, and more! Please support this incredible local collective in any way that you can because their impact cannot be measured but it will be felt in our underserved communities for all generations. Donations can be made here: https://doulaprojectrva.org/support
“The many intersections of the criminal justice system and immigration policy create fishhooks and bear traps that offer people who are immigrants no way out. Collaboration between law enforcement agencies is largely responsible for the detentions and deportations of parents, grandparents, children, friends and neighbors nationwide. SANTOS en Virginia will administer a state-wide bail and legal defense fund for incarcerated people who are immigrants; release toolkits to change local and state policies regarding cooperation with ICE; offer language justice/interpretation services to groups who share our vision; and provide political education for the grassroots and grasstops, incorporating a historical, legislative, and power analysis. We are committed to keeping funds and services accessible, not creating gate-keeping processes. Keeping someone out of ICE’s hands requires a timely triage.
“We will work to amplify existing voices of true immigrant leadership while holding accountable ALL entities that call themselves Friends and Allies to the Immigrant, Refugee or Asylum Seeker in these, Indian Lands, while at the same time interacting with local communities and international efforts to provide Sanctuary for All, Everywhere.” Please help them reach their fundraising goals for an immigrant bond and legal defense fund at thesantos.org.
The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of a large and growing movement is based out of Richmond, VA. Via their Facebook: “Jews and our allies are shutting down ICE because when we say never again, we mean it. As Jews and Allies, we’ve been taught to never let anything like the Holocaust happen again. Now, with children detained in unacceptable conditions, ICE terrorizing immigrants in every corner of the country, and people dying at the border while seeking safety in the US, we are seeing the signs of a mass atrocity. We refuse to wait and see what happens next. Goals of Never Again Actions leverage our unique position as Jews (And Jewish Allies) to redirect the conversation away from semantics and refocus on the crisis. Re-frame the narrative that the immigration crisis isn’t just a crisis at the border — it’s everywhere. Move people to take action in cities across the country targeting detention centers and the Democratic establishment who enables Trump’s reign of terror.” If you would like to get involved and see how you can use your privilege to support communities and individuals who are directly impacted by ICE and other anti-immigrant policies and attitudes, meet them at Richmond Zine Fest this year!