Let’s be honest: Many of us would not have imagined at the end of 2021 that things would get even harder and scarier in 2022. In Europe there is war again, which not only means tremendous suffering for the Ukrainian people and dissidents in Russia and in exile, but also shows once again that we are indivisibly connected across the entire planet in securing peace, in fighting injustice, in protecting the very foundations of our lives and in ensuring that our basic needs are met. While this has brought war back onto our frontpages, we should not forget the ongoing wars and human rights abuses across the world. Solidarity with protesters in Iran, China, Peru, and beyond and with those most affected by today’s intersecting crises. With the cost of living crisis right at our doorstep, we look towards the moment when one day, finally, the climate crisis is back at the top of the political agenda.
Yes, it has been a difficult year for most of us. Time was running and maybe most of us were pushed professionally, politically and personally more by our fears than by our hopes. And so often we experienced how much tougher it would be if it weren’t for the solidarities, mutual aid and support in our families and communities carrying each other through another crisis. And yet, the end of the year and the Christmas season always remind us how much more and better we would like to care for one another… and where and why we fail to do so.
Our Team’s Highlights of 2022
And that is probably what has given us at European Alternatives the most hope this year. We celebrated our 15th anniversary and saw, perhaps more than ever, how everywhere in our projects and in the communities we work with, calls for solidarity and a future based on the principles of care are getting louder and louder.
For 15 years we have been fighting now for democracy, equality, and culture beyond the nation state. Obviously, some years have been harder than others. 2022, despite its unimagined events, is outweighed by the sense of hope, courage and joy we have witnessed in so many places around Europe from so many literally wonderful people who day after day give proof that there is very much good, beauty, and truth in this world, and without whom our political, educational and artistic work would not be possible.
We are indeed proud of our progressive community of transnationalists: activists in grassroots initiatives, academics and theorists from research institutions, political artists and cultural institutions, and the many community organizers, movement educators, advocates, campaigners… and everyday people from around the world who fight for the rights of all of us and fly the flag for climate and social justice as well as safety and dignity for workers, migrants, and refugees. And we are immensely grateful that together we all share a home for those of us who sometimes share this deep sense of political powerlessness and oftentimes feel like we are in political nowhere in these rough times. If you are not already an official part of it, join us now.
Our Christmas Wishlist 2022
But we also know that our community needs to get more inclusive, even more diverse, and definitely more powerful. As you know, we try our best to make it possible for as many people as possible to participate in our political, educational, and cultural projects, because a democratic and solidary world is only possible when we are together and with all the people who can’t take anything for granted in life.
Unfortunately, however, we do not always succeed in this. Public funders and private foundations often do not support everything that we would like to see, even though many people need to be enabled to participate in political life. This year, we still paid scholarship grants to too few of our participants and were too rarely able to provide childcare, translations, and sign language interpretation. And we know very well that workshops and events are half the fun without food.
But to make 2023 even better, we ask you to donate and support European Alternatives! Because only together can we as a community and network of European Alternatives become more independent, more sustainable, and more powerful – so everyone can be part of our community, attend and enjoy our events and workshops, and imagine, demand, and enact the futures we strive for.
Our Christmas wish is therefore for you to use this time to make a one-time donation to European Alternatives or to become a supporting member. Because only together, when people dedicate their hopes, time, and also money, can we make the political miracles happen – those that we wish for more strongly every year.
Peace & Solidarity – to you and your loved ones!
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