We all have a story... and this is ours.
Eight women— school teachers, aunties, activists, and moms gathered in a living room in Brooklyn one Saturday in the spring of 2010 to speak our individual stories and diminish the distrust and divisiveness mayoral control had caused since its inception in 2002. We felt we were (are) natural allies— all wanting excellence for our children and in our women's work.
From the school-to-prison pipeline to "rubber rooms" meant to punish and discipline teachers, we recognized the unhealthy and demoralizing atmosphere in schools. The climate and conditions of mayoral control, overcrowding, charter invasions and high stakes testing not only caused chaos— but also a real detriment to school communities and children, particularly of color, throughout the city's 32 school districts.
We believe(d) we could do something tangible, positive and uplifting by supporting one another— even if it was only to talk and share, the very basic ingredients to figuring out the most positive and effective ways forward.
Our community of caring members is led by Black women who created a network of inter-racial/inter-generational support for women and mothers. We are a sisterhood of sharing, advocacy, human rights and the grassroots development of strong female leadership.
In the beginning, our get-togethers expanded into "Village Talks" and presentations. The more we shared, the more we learned— particularly about human and civil rights and the histories of women behind great social movements.
Through activism, communication, collaborations and presentations, The MANY works to provide a sounding board for solutionary ideas. We hope our efforts continue to attract new members and thus, we grow into a very mighty
group of social and politically savvy change leaders.
Presently, our aim is to educate and strengthen ourselves. We need to know how to get a seat at policy tables where decisions are made that impact our lives. Just imagine how different this society (and our schools) would be if Black, Brown other women of color and caring, anti-racist, white sisters all rolled up our sleeves to work together on dictating the policy menu and implementing it into law!