Dear Friends and Supporters,
After much thought and consideration, the Board of Directors and I have determined that, due to a combination of circumstances it is time to fold the NREC tent. It’s an ending that’s also a beginning.
Some of you are aware of the deep friendship between Bob Russell and Seth Bernard, a musician, activist, and community organizer. Towards the end of Bob’s life, there was mentorship, too. Seth sat with Bob for hours, taking notes, absorbing his thoughts on community resilience, and immediately began incorporating these concepts in his songs, campaigns, presentations and workshops for young people.
After further discernment, the board and I felt that it would be entirely fitting for NREC to convey its assets, non-profit status, and endorsement to Title Track, a newly-formed organization founded by Seth Bernard.
Title Track’s mission is: Engaging creative practice to build resilient social-ecological systems that support clean water, racial equity, and youth empowerment.
The decision to do this was unanimous and unequivocal. The Board and I are filled with enthusiasm born from a shared feeling that this is not only the right thing to do, but that this change – transferring our assets to a younger, racially diverse, regional organization will carry on the NREC aspiration to create a more resilient, compassionate world.
Last March, long before I had any inkling that this all might happen, I had agreed to serve on the Title Track Board of Directors. (This was either Divine Guidance or the impossibility of saying no to the charismatic and noble Seth!) Thus I will be on their board as the transition takes place. Hopefully my experience will be of use. As a way of continuing NREC’s legacy, we hope that in future you will consider supporting Title Track’s work.
Meanwhile, NREC has one last major project planned early in 2019. We are bringing Doing Our Own Work: An Anti-Racism Seminar for White People, to be held at the Neahtawanta Inn. This is a powerful program created twenty-five years ago by Lansing’s Allies for Change and in high demand these days.
At a time of such racial turbulence in our country, we here at NREC are gratified to be able to bring this program to Northern Michigan with the hope that it will contribute to creating a more just, resilient, and compassionate world.
As we prepare for this transition, I am overcome with gratitude for all of you, the NREC family, who supported our efforts, participated in our programs, responded to our calls for action and valued our work.
Be sure to check out Title Track’s website
to find out more about this new, vibrant organization addressing issues relating to racial equity, youth empowerment and clean water.
With gratitude and love,
Sally Van Vleck
The Neahtawanta Center worked toward environmental sustainability and community resilience, upholding nonviolence and respect for all life. Right-sized, nimble, and responsive, the Neahtawanta Center was for more than 30 years as focus and facilitator of progressive Earth-centered education and activism, primarily in the Grand Traverse Region. With long experience, the Center was able to organize quickly and collaboratively around matters of concern. NREC collaborated with other local groups on activities and events, such as: speakers, rallies and marches on environmental, peace and justice issues; raising awareness on human rights concerns; and defending minority rights, including the LGBTQ community.