Here is what we know: we are all connected.Here is also what we know: violence, both systemic and individual, causes disconnection. Systems of dominance succeed when there is disconnection. Healing is about connection and reconnection, finding ourselves within our own bodies, within our communities, and in right relationship to land and spirit. Some of this reconnection work happens naturally with friends and loved ones, when we are involved with our community’s cultural ceremonies and practice, and when we are alone and just feeling ourselves. But sometimes reconnection needs support. That’s where things like bodywork come in. The work that we do at the People’s Movement Center is not covered by insurance. That means that people pay money (and sometimes do barter or exchange) in order to get the kind of support that our practitioners offer. As soon as money is involved in care work, we are smack dab in the middle of a collective wound; unequal resources, poverty and wealth, the unfairness of some having too much when others don’t have enough. There is a knot that shows up between who can afford to pay a practitioner and how much free work a practitioner can afford to give. This fund is set up to try and loosen that knot. If this kind of care and support would be useful for you and you do not have the money to afford it, then here is a way to soften things, at least for awhile.
This fund is for people who can't afford the minimum or lowest sliding fee amount of any specific practitioner at the PMC (our fees vary). This fund will make up the difference between what you can pay (as low as 1$ or $5 or $25) and a set amount that will be fair payment for the practitioner. We ask that all recipients give something towards their session, no matter how small. The fund just covers the rest. We determine fund pay-outs based on 1) our commitment to centering the lives and experiences of POCI (people of color and indigenous) people and queer/trans people and 2) paying attention to how the fund is shared out among practitioners.
For something like this to work, each one of us has to honestly self-assess and then be willing to stretch. The questions to consider: how much can I truly afford? What is the value of this work for me? Do you automatically think – “oh, I don’t have any money” and see this fund as a way to get cheap bodywork? Stop for a second. Feeling broke and being broke are two different things. There are some guiding questions on the application form to help think this through for yourself. Our goal is to open this fund to those who literally can not afford bodywork at the lower end of a practitioner's sliding fee scale without it. We are excited to share this fund and hope it can continue to build and grow and make healing work more accessible to a wider number of people. We are starting the fund with $9,000, the gift of two people in the community who want others to have access to what they are able to afford. We ask that those who receive from the fund - and those who just think it’s a good idea - to donate towards it so that we can keep it going. We will occasionally report out to the community on how it is being used. Like healing, all resources should be part of a circle and we look forward to using this fund so that its money is moving and growing through its impact on those who receive it.
To apply to the fund, please go to this link. And don’t be shy! We are naming this as a limited resource so asking people to be wise but we are also looking at you and saying, is this something you want but feel like you can’t afford? Then apply!!! If you want to give to the fund, you can contribute and invest here on our website. Just mention that it is for the fund in the notes line.
Announcing the People’s Fund