Call for Research Proposals: Exploring Mental Health and Intersectionality in Universities

OPIRG is extremely excited to release our first of the year Call for Research Proposals: Exploring Mental Health and Intersectionality at Queen’s and in Post-Secondary Education.

With this Call for Research Proposals OPIRG is hoping to inspire and ignite a conversation, and action, about how we account for and address racism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia and all form of marginalization within our discussions and actions around mental health. Check out the full proposal, deadline, and suggested areas of discussion here.

OPIRG encourages all folks at Queen’s to consider applying; research is not something best left to academics and graduate students, it is something everyone should participate in. We strive to ensure that we root our research endeavours in the principles of community-based research. Further, OPIRG encourages collaborations between activists and academics, as well as between undergraduate and graduate students.

Any questions should be sent to info@opirgkingston.org.

 

exploringmentalhealthand-intersectionalityat-queens

And that is a wrap for Alt Frosh 2016

And that was an awesome week!

With ten events over seven days, we’ve danced the night away, raised some funds, discussed and unpacked colonialism and the relationships between settlers and indigenous folks, talked about the importance of language, celebrated the work of feminism at Queen’s and planned for the work still not yet done.

Thank you to the amazing group of volunteers who tabled, shared, reached out, and help folks find out about this amazing week. Thank you to the great groups we worked with since July to make this week possible. And thank you to all those came out and made it such a tremendous success!

In January OPIRG will be hosting an open meeting to talk about how to can plan for Alt Frosh 2017, how we can continue to make the week an ever growing success, and to hear input and feedback! Keep tuned to fine out more details as the month approaches!

Welcome to Alt Frosh 2016!

It is finally here! After two months of planning, more than 10 campus clubs and groups (and a few community organization too) are proud to release the 2016 Alt Frosh Calendar!

This year’s events range from celebrating the work done, planning for the work that still needs to be addressed, and welcoming new folks to the work still unfolding.

The events are:

Feminist CookoutCome join organizers, activists, academics, feminists, and folks from all corners of the campus for a cookout in Breakwater Park – right on the lake just across from the Queen’s Residences!

Celebrate all the great work feminist organizations and organizers have brought to Queen’s and the Kingston communities while mourning the closing days of summer. Get a chance to meet some of the amazing feminist organizations on campus, mingle with soon to be new friends and enjoy some delicious foods. The food is free, and we strive to meet as many dietary restrictions as possible – there will be halal, vegetarian, vegan, meaty, and gluten free options available!

Time: 530-730pm
Location: Breakwater Park, right across from Queen’s residences.

What is Anarchism What is Anarchism? It may not be what you think it is! In this interactive workshop, members of AKA Autonomous Social Centre will discuss some key principles of anarchism. Together, we will explore how anarchism can apply in the here and now and what it has to do with some of our core values like freedom, justice and consent. All Welcome! No prior experience with Anarchism necessary! Bring your curiosity and questions! Refreshments provided. Childcare available upon request. Contact germinations(at)riseup.net for questions, childcare, accessibility or other info.

Time: Tuesday September 13, 6:30pm
Location: Autonomous Social Centre, 75 Queen St, Unit 1 (up the ramp)

Choosing Inclusive Language: Building Relationships Across Difference –What’s in a word?  A label?  A name?  Words carry a history and power with them. Who uses what words and why can often go uninvestigated and create spaces where certain identities and voices are marginalized. The everyday choices we make around language can shape our resistance to injustice and build communities in which everyone is able to participate fully, equitably and with dignity.  Join OPIRG and the Queen’s Human Rights Office for a participatory workshop on language and power.

Time: Tuesday, September 13, 11am-1pm
Location: Mac-Corry B503

Blanket Exercise – This experiential workshop hosted by the Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre will have you “walking” in the shoes of Indigenous peoples prior to European contact. You will learn about the history of Indigenous peoples from their perspective and how contact impacted the lives of Indigenous peoples living in Canada. This workshop will bring an awareness to present day issues and how history has had an impact on those. An experience you will not regret or forget!!

Time: Wednesday September 14, 12-2pm
Location:  The Red Room, Kingston Hall

Screening Under the Stars: Two Soft Things, Two Hard Things –Screening Under the Stars is free film screening jointly hosted by Reelout Arts Project and OPIRG. This year we will be screening ‘Two Soft Things, Two Hard Things’ a brand new documentary, directed by Queen’s alum Michael Yerxa, film just released.

Film description: As a small group in Nunavut prepare for a seminal LGBT Pride celebration in the Arctic, the film explores how colonization and religion have shamed and erased traditional Inuit beliefs about sexuality and family structure and how, 60 years later, a new generation of Inuit are actively ‘unshaming’ their past.

For folks who have never been to the Screening Room before, or would like to walk over as a group from Queen’s campus; we will be meeting at the Grey House (51 Bader Lane) at 8:30pm to head over jointly – the walk will be less than 20 minutes.

Time: Wednesday September 14, 9:15pm
Location: the Screening Room, 120 Princess Street

Take Back the Mic: featuring Niambi Leigh! Take Back the Mic is an open-performance space where we seek to give time and attention back to folks who have historically been kept away from the stage – queers, performers of colour, indigenous folks, people with disabilities, and so many others.

This event is being hosted by OPIRG and the AMS Social Issues Commission, and will feature Niambi Leigh: Born in Jamaica, Niambi Leigh is a Peterborough based poet whose work explores the intersectionality between race, gender and mental illnesses. Their work is lyrical, deeply felt and rooted in storytelling. Niambi is a poet who reminds you that even the act of breathing is an expression of strength. They are the current individual Peterborough slam champion, and went on to represent Peterborough at the Verses Festival of Words in Vancouver in 2016. They are a three-time member of the Peterborough Poetry Slam Team, and traveled with the team to perform at the Canadian Festival of Spoken word in Victoria in 2014 and in Saskatoon in 2015 and Winnipeg in 2016, where they distinguished themselves as a poet on the rise.  

There will be coffee, tea, snacks and delicious food provided by the Tea Room!

Time: Thursday September 15 6:30-8:45pm
Location: the Tea Room, 45 Union Street in Beamish-Munro Hall

Friday Reading Group – RacismJoin in a passionate and engaging discussion with folks from across campus as we come together to read and share our thoughts in three different articles exploring and unpacking Islamophobia and racism. Coffee, tea and some snacks will be provided!

Time: Friday September 16 11-1pm
Location: Grey House Living Room

Soul Shakedown – Celebrate the return to Queen’s and dance the night away with some awesome music and beats from DJs EfE eMe (Latino), Tomatillo (Middle East Pop-Dance, Balkan Ska-Punk) and Inflated Powers (hip-hop, disco, electro, funk, dancehall, and oddities).

Soul Shakedown is a semi-regular show of sounds from across the world that helps raise funds for local causes – and this show’s cause is to help OPIRG Kingston raise some funds to pay some artists for our Out of the Archive and Onto the Streets Series!

Doors and music at 9pm. Admission is $8, $10 after 10:30pm

Time: Saturday September 17 from 9pm-2am
Location: the Grad Club, 168 Barrie Street

Really Really Free Market – A Really Really Free Market is a place where all things are free! Bring stuff to give away (not necessary), take stuff you need.

The “free market” benefits big corporations. The “really, really free market” benefits the rest of us. All are welcome, please invite your friends! Note: we encourage you to take home your items that are not taken if possible. For more information email rrfmkingston@riseup.net.

Time: Sunday September 18 from 12-3pm.

Location: Doug Fluhrer Park, at the north end of Wellington Street, rain location will be 75 Wellington Street

The People’s History Archive Is In Need of Folks With Some Stories

Our People’s History Project is in need for a few folks who have helped shape and make the histories of Kingston and Queen’s.

This summer the Project has been looking into the histories around:

– The Heritage Front organizing at Queen’s between 1994-1996
– The Anti-Racist Action Group challenging and resisting the Heritage Front at Queen’s and in Kingston between 1994-1996
– Folks who help resist the Temagami open mining and forestry during either the 1989 or 1996 efforts
– The Queen’s University Food Workers Strike of the early 90s
– The ‘Parking Ticket Service’ during 1999, and
– Efforts to divest from South African Apartheid at Queen’s University

If you, anyone you know, anyone you share coffee or tea with, or some random friend on Facebook, have any piece of these stories to share, please get in contact with php@opirgkingston.org.

Contributions can take any shape; minutes, old posters, files, etc. However, we particularly like interviews with folks who helped make these stories of resistance and struggle.

The People’s History Project is a collection of the stories that often go untold in the Kingston and Queen’s communities. By collecting minutes, posters, interviews, and whatever form of history we can acquire, OPIRG strives to ensure that these stories are remembered and honoured in our community. For more information and some of our past work check out here.

PHPInterviewrRequests

OPIRG Kingston is Hiring! Orientation Planning Coordinator and Social History Research Coordinator

OPIRG Kingston is excited to announce that we will be hiring two students for the upcoming summer! Applications are due, by email, on May 6 at 4pm.

The first will be continuing the work on the Out of the Archive and Onto the Streets series, check out the Social History Research Coordinator Job Description for more information. Check out here for more information about the Out of the Archive and Onto the Streets series.

The second will be laying the foundation and planning OPIRG Kingston’s Alt Frosh programming, check out the Orientation Planning Coordinator Job Description for more information.

These positions are funded by the Canada Summer Jobs program and OPIRG will be hiring pending funding approval. The Canada Summer Jobs program has certain eligibility requirements. The full list of requirements can be found at the bottom of each job description – we apologize to those who are ineligible.

All applications should be sent to hiring@opirgkingston.org and any questions or concerns can be sent to info@opirgkingston.org.

12 Reasons to Join the OPIRG Board of Directors

With our upcoming Annual General Meeting we figured we would post a short and incomplete list of why everyone should join the OPIRG Board. Want to know more? Check out here for the call for applicantions!

  1. Help set the direction and goals of OPIRG As a collective, the Board of Directors is the highest governing body of OPIRG. This group is responsible for setting the direction, the goals of OPIRG as well as laying out how we will achieve them. As a director you collaboratively help direct our research projects, programming and campaign work – where we are focusing and where we are not.
  2. Gain access to valuable workshops and skill building opportunities One of the mandates of OPIRG is to ensure every volunteer and contributor leaves a better organizer. We do this by providing our Board of Directors, volunteers and contributors with free workshops and skillshares. Through working with Tools for Change in Toronto and with local Kingston change-makers our Board members get access to powerful and informative workshops.
  3. Work with some of Queen’s and Kingston’s best activists, change makers, advocates In a normal year OPIRG works with about 30 campus and community organizations to share in programming, research and campaigning efforts. Our Directors help reach out to allied organizations and help foster and sustain our campus and community relationships.
  4. Build your resume Having experience with a Board of Directors on your resume never hurts. Through sitting on a Board of Directors you gain experience in non-profit organizations, being an employer, working to create and execute strategic plans – these are experiences that employers look for on a resume.
  5. Connect social justice movements here at Queen’s with those in the city and across the province OPIRG’s work doesn’t stop north of the ARC or east of Barrie Street, our work continues throughout the community of Kingston. Further through working with the OPIRG Provincial Network members of the Board get a chance to liaise and work with other PIRG across the country.
  6. Live your education Academic fields all across Queen’s University touch on the work of OPIRG. Through our People’s History Project, Alt Frosh, our community-based research work, to urban and regional planning, contributing to OPIRG gives you a chance to live and apply your education.
  7. Help strengthen our activist community at Queen’s OPIRG is one part of the many organization at Queen’s who organize for social and environmental justice. By joining the Board you get a chance to build and foster the activist community on our campus – welcoming new members and supporting those already here.
  8. Gain critical skills for making change By getting yourself into the mix of OPIRG you learn many of the skills needed for making social and environmental change. From campaign planning, developing and executing a marketing plan, to grant writing and fundraising, Board members get hands-on experience of the skills needed to make change.
  9. Contribute to an environment that actively challenges hierarchies and oppression OPIRG is mandated to actively challenge and contest hierarchies in our organizational structure and in our work. Further we have a clear and strong mandate to practices an anti-oppressive analysis. By joining the Board you get to work in an environment that strives to challenge hierarchies and oppressive acts.
  10. Help make OPIRG great(er) Our lasting and most impressive work has come from our Board members. Do you love the Out of the Archive and Onto the Streets series? That was an idea from a Board member. The We Believe campaign? A Board member. Our Board members are the inspiration of our work. Have an idea to share? Join the Board.  
  11. Learn and work within a consensus-based decision making framework Consensus-based decision making is really important to OPIRG. As a result one of the first things all members of the Board do is collectively scheduled and attend a consensus-based decision making workshop. In this workshop we learn the history and strengthens and weaknesses of such an approach and we develop our own unique decision making process that builds on the strengths of the Directors.
  12. And to have fun Being on OPIRG’s Board is a rewarding and fun experience. As an organization we know everyone has something to contribute and we know our best ideas come from collaboration. We use these principles as the foundation of our Board.

Save the date: Februray 24, 5-7pm: OPIRG’s Annual General Meeting

Join OPIRG at our Annual General Meeting this February 24 in the ASUS Red Room in Kingston Hall.

At our AGM we will be presenting our annual report and our 2015-2016 financials as well as electing new members to our Board of Directors. The Board of Directors is one of the most hands-on roles in our organization – responsible for planning, allocation of resources, and the organization’s mandate. Click here for more information about applying to join the Board of Directors.

Find our event page here!

Any questions or concerns can be sent to info[at]opirgkingston.org! The annual reports and other important meeting documents will be published here prior to the AGM.

Thank you for another successful referendum!

After weeks of campaigning, we’re happy to announce: we’ve had another successful referendum!

OPIRG would like to thank all of our dedicated volunteers and friends who have supported us these past two election periods. We’re excited to get back to what’s important: inspiring research, education, and action on social and environmental justice.