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Germantown Residents for Economic Alternatives Together (GREAT) is a grassroots group of people sharing common interest in working toward cooperative ownership, resource/skill-sharing, and active citizenship where people of the community shape the development that occurs.

 

To those ends, we have a study group that meets twice a month, we host swap events (it’s like a free thrift store), create space for learning and organizing around important issues like gentrification and displacement, and are creating positive, culture-shifting, community-building projects including a time bank and community land trust.

 

from GREAT's Gentrification & Displacement Teach-In at Green Street Friends Meetinghouse

We are committed to these core values and guiding principles:

 

  • We are building power, shifting consciousness, and creating alternatives.

  • This work gets at the roots, is transformative, is a growing movement... not band-aid solutions.

 

  • We use an approach that is inclusive rather than divisive, focused on building relationships to do better together than on emphasizing a story of victim and perpetrator.

 

  • We are growing/nurturing/building community into everything we do.

 

  • There’s not a distinction between the “organization” and the people benefiting, we’re all in it together. We are like organizers and movement-builders, not service-providers.

 

  • The group values and is accessible to everyone, regardless of skills, learning styles… everyone has power and ability to contribute, and does not need “professional” expertise.

 

  • We are intentional about our organizing strategies so that who we are as a group reflects who we are as a neighborhood.

 

  • We value reciprocity, empowerment, and dignity. Our work is not charity. Those who benefit pay it forward in some way; the flow is continuous.

 

  • We work at a hyper-local scale within Germantown, but hope to inspire and support other communities in doing similar work.

  • We exercise simplicity in our use of and need for financial resources.

  • We seek to critically explore and understand the world around us and our individual and collective roles in it.

GREAT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and doesn't have any staff. We're all dedicating our time and energy to the group because we think it's important for us and our community. We keep our expenses as minimal as possible, but donations help to support costs for events and projects including trainings, facilitators, food and refreshments, childcare, etc. When we spend money, we are mindful of where that money is going and do our best to support the local economy. 

We are deeply grateful for

donations of all sizes.