beautiful Appalachian South Folklife
Center, located deep in the West Virginia
hills near Pipestem State Park is our location for the 2009 Mountain
Training Camp. The purpose of camp is to provide skills for participants to spend their summer in Appalachia working with Mountain Justice and our allies to end mountaintop removal and build a sustainable future or to take these skills back home to organize for the same goals.
Founded by poet, radical labor organizer and civil rights advocate Don
West in 1965, the Appalachian South Folk honors a long tradition
of struggle in the West Virginia coalfields. Mountain Justice held
its first two Training Camps here, and some Mountain Justice members
say they still dream
Surrounded by beautiful mountain views, with a nice main lodge/dining room
and fireplace, plus a chapel, outdoor stage and bonfire pit, the Folklife
Center also indoor dorm-style accomodations as well as pleasant tent
campsites with plenty of room.
The weather for the 2005 and 2006 Mountain Justice camps was perfect, and
we have some great speakers and bands lined up for this years' camp, including "United
States of Appalachia" author Jeff Biggers, Earth First! co-founder Mike
Roselle, Former Mine Safety and Health Academy Director Jack Spadaro, "To
Save The Land and People" author Dr. Chad Montrie, Dr. Lynda Anne Ewen,
Professor Emeritus at Marshall University, plus prominent coalfield activists
and leaders, and ... you!
With an emphasis on education, strategy, non-violence and cultural sensitivity the 2009 Mountain Justice Training Camp will provide participants with comprehensive workshops covering the impacts and politics behind mountaintop removal mining and the hands-on tactical training to take to the mountains this summer and do something about it. Take this opportunity to share strategies and build relationships that will create an even stronger network of allies and coalitions organizing resistance to MTR!
Folks attending training camp are asked to contribute a minimum of $20 plus
$10/night at time of registration. This will help tremendously in
planning and purchasing food and supplies and paying for the cost of
renting the facilities
for the week. Any additional contributions will allow us to offer scholarships
for those without the funds to attend camp. If there are any funds
remaining after camp they will be used for ongoing campaigns to fight
of our mountains and communities. Your registration contribution includes
camping, parking, delicious healthy food (vegetarian, vegan and meat
options available) and all workshops.
Mountaintop removal is no joke. This is an important time in a very serious
campaign. Mountain Justice Training Camp is open to all activists who
want to see all forms of mountaintop removal coal mining and valley
fills abolished and
who are willing to abide by our Mountain Justice policies of non-violent
direct action. Although we often joke that we will "win" because
we have more fun (and we will!) many fruits will be born of our hard
labor, our ability to focus, and our tendency to come together as community to get things done.
Please know that as we hope there will be much music/merry making and you will be fed for the duration of the camp, opportunities to learn and share skills will be abundant and we expect each participant to be just that - a participant. That means an emphasis on fully participating in workshops, discussions, at least two community volunteer shifts (kitchen, clean up, etc.) and a summer of joining us in making history as we end mountaintop removal and build a more sustainable future. We rock because we work and play together.