Dear Friend in the Struggle:
The issue of reparations for African Americans for centuries of enslavement and generations of discrimination, exclusion and oppression through legal segregation in the south and de facto segregation “up south” has never been such a topic of discussion, debate and possibilities than now. The heads of state of the 15 nations that comprise the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) have voted unanimously to demand reparations from the former colonizers for genocide against the indigenous people and African enslavement! A CARICOM Reparations Commission has been formed – which has developed a 10 Point Reparations Program. This is a major development which has given a huge boost to the global reparations movement, including the U.S.
Inspired by the courageous move by CARICOM, the Institute of the Black World 21st Century called on a number of scholars, activists and organizers to form the National African American Reparations Commission (NAARC)– which has developed a Preliminary 10 Point Program for Reparations for African Americans! NAARC’s goal is to take the 10 Point Program to the people for review, comment and recommendations through a series of Area/Regional Hearings and Town Hall Meetings. The first Hearing/Town Hall Meeting was in Atlanta in June of 2016. It was very successful. The second one will be organized November 30th – December 2nd in New Orleans.
We’re on the move, but we have a problem. IBW does not have a budget for NAARC or Area/Regional Hearings/Town Hall Meetings. Lack of funding has been serious a weakness of the reparations movement, and we cannot expect corporations or foundations to fund it. Thus far, we have managed by appealing directly to the people to donate to cover the costs of various events. We urgently need financial support to cover the expenses of the Reparations Gathering in New Orleans and funds to push on to the next Hearing and Town Hall Meeting.
Accordingly, we are appealing to our friends and supporters to help IBW raise a minimum of $15,000 in the next 30 days for the New Orleans Gathering. We are also planning a Benefit Reception in New Orleans to raise$15,000 or more. Specifically, we need funds for:
- Air travel and lodging for Ms. Samia Nkrumah, daughter of Kwame Nkrumah, who has taken on reparations as a cause and will be one of our Special Guests — $2,500
- Lodging and catering for NAARC Commissioners and representatives from Colombia, South America, Jamaica and France — $7,500
- The cost of livestreaming parts of the Gathering, transportation and venues for the various events — $5,000
When we raise $15,000 through this appeal and another $15,000 in New Orleans, we will have a modest amount to begin organizing the next Area/Regional Hearing and Town Hall Meeting on the West Coast. This is not a lot of money, but achieving this modest goal will be extremely helpful to IBW as we administer and coordinate the work of NAARC moving forward.
Dr. Julius Garvey and Dr. Leonard Jeffries, two iconic Pan Africanist leaders and stalwart supporters of reparations have donated $500 each in support of this appeal. We are asking as many of our supporters who can afford it to match their tax-deductible donation or give more if you are able. However, every tax – deductible donation in whatever amount is deeply appreciated. Reparations is an issue whose time has come! Help IBW and NAARC keep pushing the movement forward!
Yours in the struggle,
Ron Daniels, President,
Institute of the Black World 21st Century,
Convener, National African American Reparations Commission