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December 21st, 2009

Solstice Giving

Solstice giving projects

For Winter Solstice I celebrated in two ways today. First up was a long walk with the dog in the woods so we could commune with nature. Then later in the afternoon I renewed my membership with the Free Speech Coalition.

I like to donate to organizations in December. Maybe it’s my version of the holiday spirit or me just waxing nostalgic about the year’s end. Either way it just seems appropriate to do this time of year. In this economy I know it’s hard to donate to organizations on top of your normal bills. But if you can donate, even if it’s just a little, here are some organizations I like:

Free Speech Coalition
“The Free Speech Coalition is the trade association for the adult entertainment industry. Our members consist of a broad range of adult businesses from producers and webmasters to manufacturers, retailers and many, many more.”

I’ve heard the FSC referred to as the ACLU of the adult industry. I think the description is apt.You don’t have to be in the sex biz to donate.

Planned Parenthood
“We are a trusted health care provider, an informed educator, a passionate advocate, and a global partner helping similar organizations around the world. Planned Parenthood delivers vital reproductive health care, sex education, and information to millions of women, men, and young people worldwide.”

I’ve visited several Planned Parenthoods in several states and have always gotten excellent care. They’re the only health service that I felt comfortable enough to tell them I was a sex worker.

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
“From the Internet to the iPod, technologies are transforming our society and empowering us as speakers, citizens, creators, and consumers. When our freedoms in the networked world come under attack, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is the first line of defense. EFF broke new ground when it was founded in 1990 — well before the Internet was on most people’s radar — and continues to confront cutting-edge issues defending free speech, privacy, innovation, and consumer rights today. From the beginning, EFF has championed the public interest in every critical battle affecting digital rights.”

The EFF is one of the most important activist groups out there. Consistently they step up to defend our freedom on the internet and for that I love them.

$pread Magazine
“The idea for $pread Magazine was conceived in New York City in the spring of 2004 by Rachel Aimee, Rebecca Lynn, and Raven Strega. Tired of seeing sex workers misrepresented and sensationalized in the media, we decided to create a space for sex workers to speak for themselves. We didn’t have any experience in publishing, but step-by-step we gathered submissions, recruited more staff, took a crash course in design software, and raised the money to print the first issue by throwing benefit parties. $pread was launched on March 15th, 2005, and by the end of that first year our unique, quarterly magazine had received the Utne Independent Press Award for Best New Title.”

The importance of a space for sex workers to speak can’t be emphasized enough. We are misrepresented and sensationalized in the media. $pread Magazine is a small magazine with a shoe string budget and dedicated volunteers. I donate to them every year.

Sex Worker Outreach Project (SWOP)
“Sex Workers Outreach Project-USA is a national social justice network dedicated to the fundamental human rights of sex workers and their communities, focusing on ending violence and stigma through education and advocacy.”

Hearing the names of the slain sex workers at this year’s Dec. 17th reminded me of the importance of supporting organization like SWOP.

Posted by Vixen as Activism at 10:15 PM CST

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