Widespread, effective social movements usually include mutual aid strategies as part of their work. Mutual aid is work that directly addresses the conditions the movement seeks to address, such as by providing housing, food, health care, or transportation in a way that draws attention to the politics creating need and vulnerability. Famous examples of mutual aid projects include the Black Panther Party's Free Breakfast Program, the Young Lords Party's hijacking of New York City's tuberculosis testing mobile unit to bring TB testing to high-risk, medically neglected neighborhoods, and feminist organizing to provide underground abortions in the 1970's.
In this webinar, we will look at why mutual aid is an important part of building participatory movements, and what is difficult about mutual aid in the current political climate. We will also look at what principles and methods characterize politicized survival work and how it intentionally departs from charity frameworks.