Tuesday, April 13, 2010
CANADIAN ANARCHIST MOVEMENT-WINNIPEG:
CORNERING THE "MARKET":
Molly recently received this appeal from the Junto 91 Radical Lending Library of which I am a member here in Winnipeg. The Junto is located in the Old Market Autonomous Zone, also know as the A-Zone, at 91 Albert St. Winnipeg. This is a building in the Exchange District of downtown Winnipeg that hosts a wealth of alternative groups and projects including, of course, the Mondragon- Winnipeg's local infoshop and radical cafe. It is hoped that this building can soon be puchased outright and run as a cooperative venture. That is the nature of the following appeal - for support in this worthy endeavor.
Global Call for Solidarity: Support the A-Zone Co-op Initiative!
April 8, 2010
“The A-Zone is what every activist in every city or town dreams of and few get to experience: a physical space that is under the control of those who work in it, part of a network of alternative institutions where people can learn together what could be accomplished in a better society. When I first saw it years ago my first reaction was happy surprise...one major problem I can think of is that there aren’t more of them!”
-Justin Podur, Znet
Since 1995 the Old Market Autonomous Zone (A-Zone) at 91 Albert St. has provided affordable space to worker co-operatives, activist collectives, and related businesses and organizations. It is a home for people and groups dedicated to the values of justice, solidarity, liberation, democracy and so much more. The A-zone is known locally and internationally as a vital and inspiring site of activism and organizing against all forms of oppression.
In the autumn of 2009, we, the tenants and supporters of the A-Zone, were presented with the opportunity to collectively purchase this four level heritage building in the heart of Winnipeg’s Exchange District. We hope to strengthen new, and broaden existing social movements by continuing to make the space available for public discussion, political debate, and everyday activism. To continue managing the space in a way to foster self-sufficiency and mutual-aid.
The tenants of the A-Zone have been meeting to organize the not-for-profit, democratically run A-Zone Tenant Co-operative with the goal of purchasing the building from its current owner. We have launched a four month international campaign to raise the down payment and we would like your support.
Some of our current fundraising efforts are:
• A raffle on May the 1 for an amazing, hand-crafted Punk Patch Quilt made by local supporters.
Tickets are still available, and the quilt can be viewed on the A-Zone website http://www.a-zone.org/ .
• A commemorative, silk-screened A-zone art poster has been designed and is available for purchase. It too can be viewed on our website http://www.a-zone.org/ .
Finally, we would like to invite you to catch our “Building the A-Zone Co-op Marathon Fundraiser,” May 1 to 2 . Co-presented by the MayWorks Festival of Labour and the Arts, and CKUW 95.9FM. This 24-hour non-stop event will be held in Mondragón Bookstore and Coffeehouse at 91 Albert St. and will be simultaneously webcast and partially radio broadcast. It will feature musicians, poets, comedians, and culminate May 2 with a performance by actor Sharon Bajer in costume as revolutionary anarchist activist Emma Goldman. ( That's right. Emma will return from that great commune in the sky especially for this event only - Molly )Audiences will be encouraged to call with donations to the Emma Goldman Grassroots Centre at 1-204-942-6994.
Donations of any amount are gratefully welcome! Cheques can be written to “Winnipeg Parecon Worker Council” and marked “A-Zone Co-op” in the notes section. For more information check out http://www.a¬zone.org/ or contact our fundraising committee at email@example.com
Junto Local 91 Radical Lending library (known previously as the Liberty Library) is a collectively-run, volunteer based lending library on the second floor of the A-Zone. We’re dedicated to maintaining a comprehensive collection of reading material as well as audio and video resources free for the public to use and enjoy. Our library offers radical, rare, and relevant fiction and non-fiction on topics such as: anarchism, gender issues, indigenous struggles, environmentalism, labour history, art, do-it-yourself, and much more.
Junto has over 1000 members, organizes fun and inspiring events and has sponsored the Winnipeg Anarchist Book-Fair. We share a second floor common space called the Emma Goldman Grassroots Centre and maintain it as a welcoming resource area for solidarity groups to meet.
Junto needs this affordable space as it continues to work toward a better world.
We write to you in anticipation of your support of this exciting initiative. By supporting the A-Zone Co-op you are supporting Junto as well, and the fellowship we share with the other groups at 91 Albert Street.
Thanks for your support and we hope to hear from you soon!
Members of the Junto Local 91 Radical Lending Library.