It was so good seeing so many of you last week as we got our full schedule under way for the semester. The GCW is a big, extended community, and we rely on you to keep doing the work we’ve committed to doing in service to and in solidarity with our friends and neighbors who are struggling because of poverty, homelessness, addiction, unemployment, mental illness and more. If you’re thinking about finding something you can commit to on a weekly or monthly basis, we hope you’ll consider helping out this semester as a regular volunteer here at the Green House–at Dorothy’s Cafe, the microfarm, Art for All, football game Saturdays, or one of our other projects. We could use your help!
So many cool things happening this week…
EXPERIENCING THE CAMINO: This past summer, GCW co-founder Kelli Brew walked the Camino de Santiago, a 500-mile pilgrimage from western France across the north of Spain and ending in Santiago de Compostela. The Camino dates back to medieval times when pilgrims would walk to Santiago de Compostela to visit the tomb of St. James, apostle to Jesus. People walk the Camino for a variety of reasons. This Thursday, from 6:30-8pm, Kelli will share her experience at our first Roundtable of the semester, “Notes from the Camino.” Walking the Camino is a transformative and reflective experience, and Kelli will talk about her reasons for going on pilgrimage, share insights and stories gleaned from her 40 days walking the Camino, offer practical advice for people who may one day undertake it, and more. Join us and bring a dish to share if you can for the potluck dinner!
ARTISTS AND CRAFTERS UNITE! This Saturday, from 1-4pm, we’ll host our first Art for All workshop of the semester. Former house member Kendera Omanga, along with stalwart community members Mary Peer and Linda Gardner, are organizing the Art for All workshops every other Saturday through November. Art for All is part art therapy, part cottage industry (folks needing to earn a little money who want to sell their artwork or crafts through our in-house boutique are welcome to do so) and simply creative and fun for all who participate. Local artists will be on hand to teach or advise participants as needed. Everyone is welcome to come!
REMEMBERING A FRIEND AND SUPPORTER: The GCW continues to live and grow because of the generosity of so many–not only those who live close by but from friends and supporters all across the U.S. Last week, we learned that one of our most generous and encouraging supporters, Herb Bazur, had passed away at age 88. Herb, along with his wife Betty, supported our work from afar for many years (they lived in Michigan during the summer and winter in Central Florida, and recently relocated permanently to Ft. Wayne, Indiana). John wrote a short post on Herb on the site here for folks who want to know more about him and what he meant to our community and to John personally. Herb is survived by his wife Betty; please keep her and his entire family in your prayers. Herb was a sweet, sweet man and we will miss him something fierce.
ODDS AND ENDS: No Green House Knitters on Labor Day Monday this week. The Knitters will start back up next Monday … Jade says that he can use some extra help at the microfarm on Thursday mornings, whatever time you can spare, but he’s also open to folks helping out on Tuesday mornings if that fits your schedule better. See the project page for how to get in touch with Jade and get directions to the microfarm … And our new brochure is now available! Hard copies can be found at the house and a PDF is online and can be found by clicking here. The brochure includes our schedule for the semester, contact info, project descriptions and more.
Hope to see you this week at the GCW!
Lots of new projects, new volunteer opportunities, and new stuff happening at the house this week, which we hope some of y’all will join in on! But before we get to what is going on this week, I wanted to share some photos with you from last week’s event with Brother Cornell West at the Bo Diddley Plaza Downtown with Occupy Gainesville. Check out the slideshow below:
Tamra, Vickie, Johnny, Rudy and I were all there to hear Brother West speak (amazing). And we bumped into GCW friends and volunteers all over the place: Miriam from Arbor House, Diedre of Roundtable fame, and Willie (who I got a few good photos of with Brother West). If you haven’t read or heard Cornel West before, check him out online and pick up one of his books!
NEW PARTNERSHIP WITH LOCAL MICRO-FARM: Jade Allen and Lynn Chacko, members of the GCW extended family, have offered a partnership between the GCW and their urban micro-farm just a few blocks from UF. We’ll be helping steer volunteers to the micro-farm for a regular weekly workday (Thursdays, starting this week between 8am and noon) and also participate in a monthly big project workday at the micro-farm (second Saturday of each month, 9am-3pm). The produce from the micro-farm will be shared with our friends and neighbors at the cafe and through distribution as necessary to folks who don’t have access to healthy, fresh food. Jade has a doctorate in plant medicine and is looking forward to the opportunity to share with people the ins and outs of running your own urban, sustainable micro-farm and giving people the skills they need to grow their own food too. In keeping with CW co-founder Peter Maurin’s vision, we’re excited at having an “agronomic center” as part of the work of the GCW! If you want to volunteer regularly on Thursdays, or just show up on Thursdays when you’re able to help out, you can call Jade at 352-213-4053 or 352-337-0817 to get directions and let him know you’re coming!
COFFEE ANYONE? Each January we re-start the GCW Coffee Shop, from 1-3pm on Tuesdays. This is an opportunity for people who might need to get out of the cold to drop by, have a cup of coffee or tea (and sometimes a treat), read a magazine or newspaper, and just generally hang out and be welcomed. We’d appreciate a few volunteers to help out with the coffee shop if you’re able. This is a great, relaxed opportunity to both serve and get to know some of our friends who regularly come by the GCW. (Later this month or early next, we’ll also be running Art for All workshops in the living room adjacent to the dining room at this same time.) Set-up begins at 12:30pm and clean-up goes until about 3:30pm. Let us know if you can help out!
RETURNING TO THE STORY: It’s been a little while since we hosted a regular scripture study at the house, so if you’ve been waiting, here’s your chance. On Mondays (starting this week) from 12-1pm, we’ll be studying scripture together. Everyone is invited to join us. We’ll be discussing this week whether we study one book or flip around to different passages or what. If you come, feel free to bring a lunch to eat as we study!
FINAL WEEKEND FOR GALILEO OF GAINESVILLE: This play, created by volunteers and members of the homeless community over the past few years under the direction of the extraordinary Dan Kahn–with many a reading taking place during Dorothy’s Cafe–will end its run this weekend, with a special opportunity on Sunday for a talk-back with the performers. Shows this weekend will be Friday and Saturday at 8pm, then a special performance on Sunday at 2pm. People who are homeless are invited to attend Sunday’s performance for free and participate in the talk-back. The play is at the Acrosstown Repertory Theater, 619 South Main Street.
Hope everyone has a great week and we hope to see you around the house!