March 30, WEEKLy Update

Thank you for joining the Cambridge Mutual Aid Network! We wanted to reach out and thank all of you for joining this community organizing initiative to provide solidarity and support to one another in these changing times.

This week we’ve grown to 350+ volunteers, and nearly 50 neighborhood pod leaders. Neighbors have continued to uplift and empower each other through acts such as providing emergency housing and picking up groceries for one another. If you are in a position to support others, our current list of community needs is available here.

Get Involved

We are growing and our efforts are expanding. Are you interested in getting involved in an organizational role?

  • We are looking for people interested in joining our leadership team who can lend their expertise in graphic design, and law (taxation and/or liability)

  • Additionally, we are looking for individuals who have advanced knowledge of another language who can be on-standby for translation when someone reaches out in their preferred language.

  • Interested in filling any of these roles? Reach out to us at CambridgeMutualAid@gmail.com.

Neighborhood Pods

Pods are groups of neighbors connected by texting groups, mailing lists, or phone trees that help them keep in touch and get and give help. We now have close to 50 pods including hundreds of Cambridge neighbors! To learn more and to join your local Neighborhood Pod, visit: https://www.cambridgemutualaid.info/neighborhood-pod-program If you see that your neighborhood is uncovered and you want to sign up to found a pod, please email our neighborhood pod coordinator Kit at kit.camb.nan@gmail.com and include your home address.

The Cambridge Mutual Aid Network Fund

In the first week of our direct-aid fund, we raised over $10,000 as a community and have already provided over $5,000 in urgently needed emergency funds to individuals and families to cover rent, utilities, food, medical prescriptions, and more! To make our fundraising most effective, we have partnered with the Democracy Center, a Cambridge-based nonprofit. To contribute, please click here and enter an amount. Be sure to write “For CMAN Fund” in your payment note, and deselect the “Paying for goods or a service?” box. If you are in need of financial assistance, please reach out to our fund coordinators, Rob and Kenny, at CMAN.fund@gmail.com

In Need of Additional Support?

We know many of our neighbors may be facing financial obstacles right now, and there are two local funds to help. The Cambridge Community Foundation (CCF) asked us to share their two funds to help individuals and non-profits: a Covid19 Emergency Fund and an Artist Relief Fund. Individuals can apply for grants for up to $1,000, and non-profits can apply for up to $10,000 to distribute grants to the individuals they serve. The foundation has received almost 200 applications, and they are reviewed on a rolling basis. For more info email Lori at lorilander@gmail.com or visit the Cambridge Community Foundation website.

Thank you for supporting and uplifting one another in these changing times, and we look forward to working with you to take care of our community in the upcoming weeks. Whether it's sharing this email, sharing on social media, sharing your offerings, or sharing your needs, we are grateful for all of the ways our community is staying safely connected and looking out for one another!

Best,

The Cambridge Mutual Aid Network (CMAN)

Facebook Page: click here

Twitter: @CambridgeAid


Welcome!

In these fast-moving and uncertain times, it’s important that we show up for each other and remember that we are not alone. We are setting this up based on the efforts of Somerville/Medford and Jamaica Plain’s mutual aid groups.

The Coronavirus pandemic is rapidly changing the way society functions. In order to mitigate the spread of the disease, people are practicing social distancing. This slows down the rate of infection enough to both lower the ultimate number of people infected, and spread those infections out over many months to ensure adequate care as the healthcare system becomes overwhelmed. However, neighbors need to help neighbors right now, and this is especially true for vulnerable populations such as the elderly or immunocompromised. People may need help obtaining groceries or remote support. Most importantly, they will know they are not alone. The Neighborhood Aid Network has one simple goal: To provide a platform for volunteers to coordinate care on a neighborhood basis. The Human Network Initiative also can link you to similar efforts across the region.

See Previous Updates

We are growing, but currently consist of the following:

  1. A forum for sharing our offerings whether that be extra food supplies, legal counsel, child-care, or the ability to drive someone from point A to point B.

  2. A forum for sharing our needs. No need is too big or too small, and submission can be anonymous.

  3. Neighborhood pods to develop neighborhood contacts, group chats, and phone trees.

  4. Additional resources for housing, medical information in different languages, and community-based initiatives.

  5. A direct aid emergency fund for those in need.

Short-cuts to Resources:

Help Us Grow

Help us build:

We are looking for support: these documents were put together in a few hours by some friends and we definitely need help from more people to get this thing going on the scale that we need.

Here are some roles that need to be filled: Childcare Coordinator, Social Media,

Spreading the word:

We need to spread the word about what we’re doing in concise and clear ways to ALL parts of Cambridge- help us make and distribute flyers, spread the word online, and reach out to other friends. Text for email, Facebook, and Twitter is available here.

Translations + Language Justice:

Please reach out if you have capacity to translate some of our materials into Spanish, Portuguese, or Haitian Creole.

Org Org

Why reinvent the wheel? Cambridge is filled with awesome organizations that already have tons of resources and skills. We want to form networks with them to maximize mutual aid! Help us reach out to existing networks and figure out how to power up together.

Budgeting

Determining financial needs and distribution based on principles of harm reduction and effectivity.

Something else!

Feel free to share your brilliant idea! Get in touch: cambridgemutualaid@gmail.com