Get The Party Started! Feminist Agenda PDX Launches!

Feminist Agenda PDX Launches Party Jan. 26

Calling all Feminists! The Girls from In Other Words, Katie Carter and Amber Rowland have officially launched Feminist Agenda PDX and want to celebrate. They are hosting a FREE all-age, family friendly event at Mercy Corps., January 26th.There will be short films on media literacy by the Reel Grrls (all girl camp in Seattle) and a screening of Miss Representation. There will be an after party celebration for those of you over 21 at the Beauty Bar; drink specials included.

The two started Feminist Agenda PDX in hopes of bringing the Portland Feminist community together as well as promoting the work of different feminist, queer and radical organizations. Beside the website-which includes a directory of over 30 groups and organizations, the Feminist Agenda PDX has a monthly newsletter to help promote different future events and volunteer opportunities. You can also follow them on Twitter and Facebook. I had the chance to interview Katie and Amber about Feminist Agenda PDX.

qPDX: What can we expect from the upcoming Launch Party?

Feminist Agenda: We’re really excited to be bringing the collection of short films Generation of Consolidation to Portland from Reel Grrls in Seattle, as well as a couple of actual Reel Grrls who will talk about the films and the camp. Organizations like this and our local Rock n Roll Camp for Girls, are so important for empowering girls and helping them realize their potential. We think that this in particular will be complementary to the themes in the other film we’re showing, Miss Representation which highlights how the problematic portrayal of women in mainstream media has long-term negative effects on their sense of empowerment as well as their representation in positions of leadership and influence.We are also extremely excited that this screening is going to be free, thanks to our sponsors Weiden+Kennedy, Women in Film Portland, and Portland Oregon Women’s Film Festival (POW Fest).

You stated on your website that this was the type of project you two have always wanted to do. Why now?

The Girls behind the name; Kate and Amber

Prior to this we were the Co-Directors of In Other Words Feminist Community Center, a job that was pretty all-consuming. While we would have loved to do more work networking and helping to connect feminist and radical communities, as well as outreach to youth, there just wasn’t the time or the resources available. We were so focused on keeping the community center afloat, that we fell out of touch with the rest of what was going on in Portland. Once we were relieved of our positions we found we had a lot more time and energy to dedicate to those things we always wanted to work on, particularly this project.

What other organizations have you partnered up with and how have they helped you achieve your goals?

So far we’ve been doing individual outreach to the organizations on our website to makes sure they know it is a resource available to them and a lot of them regularly email us updates for us to send out in our monthly newsletter. A few of the organizations we’ve highlighted in our newsletter so far are: PAVE, African Women’s Coalition, Radical Women, World Pulse, the Center for Women, Politics and Policy, and Sex Workers Outreach Coalition (SWOC). Some Gender and Sexuality studies instructors have even used it as a tool with their students to encourage community involvement. Coming up we have a clothing drive planned for Dress for Success and this summer we’re putting together a feminist/radical scavenger hunt that will involve a number of organizations in Portland. We’re hoping to partner with some groups that aren’t exclusively feminist so we can help bring together activists from different communities, particularly those that have historically been marginalized within the mainstream feminist movements.

So far, how has the Portland community responded? 

So far we’ve gotten really great feedback! I think people are excited that we’re creating a resource that brings together all the great things happening in Portland in one place. There are a lot of new folks to Portland and it isn’t always easy to find your niche so we’re hoping this will be a resource for those new folks, as well as bringing attention to organizations that might not be as well-known. We’ve also been excited about how many high school students have expressed interest in our launch event and we hope that this will be a good opportunity for them to not only connect to organizations, but also to connect to one another. Now that the website has launched (though it will always be a work in progress), our main goal is to do outreach and encourage people to get more actively involved in their communities!

These ladies are awesome for getting such an important project started. We should take a lead, and all do our part to help support the community! Cheers, Katie and Amber-Looking forward to the launch party!

To help out for Feminist Agenda PDX, Volunteer here.


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