We’ve got a lot to share in this newsletter – and a couple of EASY tasks!
Coffee morning: Saturday 4 March, 11am to 1pm
Thanks to everyone who came to our February coffee morning! It makes such a difference to a mutual aid group to be able to talk in person: each time we do new ideas emerge and relationships grow. Our next coffee morning is on Saturday 4 March, 11am to 1pm, at Advocacy Academy in Brixton (5-7 Vining St, SW9): please join us! We’ll have drinks, snacks and cash to pay for bus fares.
Solidarity fund: opens midday, Saturday 25 February
The solidarity fund will reopen on Saturday 25 February at midday. If you want to apply, please make sure you’re ready to fill in the form in this link at midday – it usually stays open for about two minutes before the fund runs out of money!
At the moment, LMA receives about £600 in regular donations, plus occasional extra money. We give about £180 a month to Rastafari Movement, to cover costs of delivering food to 12 different people, mostly elders. We try and give out £400 per month to people applying via the form – but if everyone asks for £50, that’s just eight people who can get grants. We also try and make sure there’s money for a group of people with no recourse to public funds living in temporary accommodation. If you find it hard to get money from the fund, this is why: we’re trying to make a small amount reach as many people as possible.
As someone receiving money from the fund, you can help in so many ways!
1. Please only apply for money every two months – and please, only one person apply per household.
2. Please help with putting out flyers! Come and collect them from the coffee morning and put them up in public places: cafes, libraries, colleges are all good.
3. Please send us an email telling us why LMA matters to you, how the grants have helped you, or why more money in the fund would make a difference to you – it might encourage more people to donate!
Do you already donate? Could you get more involved?
We think so! We’d love for you to spread the word: mention LMA to your friends and share the link to donate, pick up flyers from the coffee morning – and email us telling us why donating to LMA matters to you. We’d love to have more thoughts to put on flyers and social media, so please get involved if you can.
Don’t forget that Lambeth Libraries are giving out free energy saving kits with draught excluders, LED lightbulbs and radiator reflector panels – small things that can make a big difference to bills. Check if you need screw or bayonet bulbs before heading to one of these collection points: all Lambeth households are eligible, you just need to share your name and address with the Climate Change action team.
LMA is mostly focused on wealth redistribution from a sense of emergency: we live in a state that is failing to provide for people’s basic needs. Worse: a state that openly declares itself a Hostile Environment, and believes in austerity for everyone except the wealthy. (Book recommendation! Empire’s Endgame, by a group of authors committed to social solidarity, is excellent on this and many other points.)
Watching the attack on the hotel in Knowsley last weekend – an attack organised by far-right groups with a clear racist agenda – it was clear how important solidarity movements are to counter such hostility. We’re involved in mutual aid because we want to be in solidarity with people whose lives are made vulnerable by the Hostile Environment and austerity: policies that limit access to such basic human needs as housing, food and warmth. This isn’t just about moving money around the borough, from wealthier people to people who are struggling: it’s also about being ready to stand alongside our neighbours, against harm in all its forms.
We’re glad you’re reading this newsletter: it feels like you’re with us. Please be as involved as you can.
With love, LMA xoxo