WIMN’s Voices: A Group Blog on Women, Media, AND…

WIMN Media Training

varreolas Icon Posted by Veronica Arreola

April 16th, 2009

In March I was honored to lead my first WIMN Media Training. The training was held in Washington, DC and was the for the United Methodist Women’s Division Ecumenical Advocacy Days. The group of women gathered to learn more about green living issues and strategize how they can advocate to the public and elected officials about climate change. That’s where WIMN came in.

I lead a two-hour interactive training that walked the activists through the basics of writing letters to the editor, op-eds and letters to elected officials. It was quite a diverse group of women and one man in attendance. One woman was a journalist and photographer and was able to help add to my own views about newspapers. Some were clearly taking their first step into the world of activist writing which was exciting for me. I love helping people learn the ropes and amplify their voices.

What struck me was how amazing it was that this group of women from across the country, small towns, large cities, of different shades of skin and ages ranging from 16 to I would guess 60s, came together around their religion to work on climate change issues. In Chicago we hear a lot about recycling and using tap water. I heard from women who know of communities where well water is unsafe so they must buy bottled water. Environmental issues get too easily wrapped up under “green” or “climate change” but rarely do we get a chance to unpack all those issues to see how they differ by region.

Personally, it was also moving to be so lovingly embraced by a group of women of faith. As a recovering Catholic and current tree-hugging-goddess-worshipper, I am leery of group religion. I was honest with them about that too. Yet they still oozed love during the training. It was not that I thought they wouldn’t like me, but I certainly went in there with my guard up. It melted immediately.

I’ll follow up with them, as we do with all our trainees, in a few months to see how things are going and if there is anything WIMN can do to help them some more. I hope to learn of many letters written and published.

To learn more about WIMN’s media training or to request one for your group, please visit our website.

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