Dear generative somatics (gs) community,
Our work has grown dramatically since our beginnings in 2009. We have been moving quickly to build an organization, train teachers and practitioners, and create a strategy to guide our work. It has been amazing, and it has been a lot. Even with our rapid growth, we don't come close to meeting the expressed need for our programs and movement partnerships.
We have come to an important choice.
We will focus 2019 on strengthening our organization, learning from the last ten years, deepening our politics and culture, and preparing ourselves for the next 10 years of transformative work.
We are building gs to be in it for the long haul.
In order to do this, we are dedicating 2019 to:
The current political, economic, and environmental conditions are putting intense pressure on movement leaders, who often look to gs for support. By addressing the needs listed above, gs will be better able to show up for the long
haul, and make a strategic, rigorous, and transformative contribution. But this was a difficult choice to make, because it also means that, in 2019, we will be running a reduced number of programs and partnerships.
While we won't be running the same number of programs in 2019, there will still be ways to connect with gs and access the work.
Our commitment is bringing the best we can to serve powerful and compelling movement building, for the long haul. Thank you for being a part of gs.
With gratitude and commitment,
Staci & Chris
Staci K. Haines, Executive Director
Chris Lymbertos, Program Director
2019: building gs for the long haul.
In the past several months we have been assessing --
what do we need to do to meet the needs of our communities in these times? How do we bring gs' work to movements in the most powerful ways? Through this reflection a number of things have become clear to us. We need to engage in organization-building; learn from what has worked and what hasn't; and deepen relationships with leaders and organizations in our strategic priority areas - environmental & climate justice, and fighting for freedom from political repression & state violence.
Our work has grown dramatically since our beginnings in 2009. We have grown our teaching bench from 5 to 48 teachers who are at the heart of our programs. Just in the last 2 years, our course offer has more than doubled. In 2016, gs courses took place over 30 days; and in 2018, courses took place over 64 days and served 220 course participants. We also worked with 12 Movement Partners & funder partners, including 38 days of programming for 279 participants. In addition, we run the gs Practitioners Network, Teacher Training, Transformative Resourcing programs, and more.
Even with this tremendous growth spurt, we still don't come close to meeting the need. We now receive 100-150 applications for approximately 30 spots in each course, and similar levels of interest from organizations that want to partner with gs. The growth and scale of demand on gs has been increasing exponentially. This is understandable given the heightened attacks on our communities.
In these last 10 years, we have been moving quickly. We have built an organization and created a strategy to guide our work to be precise and strategic. It has been amazing and it's also been a lot.
We are making an important choice in 2019
. We will focus next year on strengthening our organization, learning from the last ten years, deepening our politics and culture, and preparing ourselves for the next 10 years of transformative work. We are building gs to be in it for the long haul. We are making this choice to ensure that we develop gs in ways that meet the needs of the present, prepare for changing conditions, and allow for future possibilities of this work. We aim to be agile, powerful, and impactful in service of the movements that we are accountable to.
In order to do this, we are dedicating 2019 to:
: Bringing in new leadership on staff, and further developing our Strategy Team, Board of Directors, Transformative Resourcing leadership, gs practitioners, and gs teachers.
Learning & Listening: Assessing short and long term impact of our programming so far, with our Movement Partners, teachers, and others. We will unearth best practices to offer the most relevant programming for movements.
Culture & Politics: Being in our learning to deepen our practice of sustainability, racial justice, accessibility to this work, and more.
Systems: Improving and upgrading grounded scalable systems to review hundreds of applications and inquiries, and communicate with our growing community.
The current conditions are putting intense pressure on movement leaders, who often look to gs for support. By addressing the needs listed above, gs will be better able to show up in the long haul, and make a strategic, rigorous, and transformative contribution. But this was a difficult choice to make, because it also means that, for a period of time, we won't be running the same level of programming.
In 2019, there will still be ways to connect with gs and access support and practice. We will be running the following programs:
✔️ Movement Partnerships:
We will continue to work with the strategic Movement Partners that we've been working with over the years, in a more limited capacity .
✔️ gs Courses:
> School of Embodied Leadership (SOEL):
SOEL will be open to all applicants. We will put primary focus on participants who are leaders in our Strategic Priority areas - environmental and climate justice & fighting for freedom from political repression and state violence.
Course announcement and application can be found here.
> Somatics and Trauma Advanced (STA):
STA will be a great opportunity for practitioners and coaches to deepen their somatic healing skills. This course also supports movement leaders to deepen their understanding of trauma healing and resilience, and its relevance for leadership and organizing. This course has prerequisites.
Course announcement and application can be found here
✔️ gs Practitioners Network (gsPN):
gsPN is a great resource for organizers, activists, cultural workers and other movement leaders to access one-on-one somatic sessions and healing groups.
> gsPN also supports practitioners and coaches to get organized and receive further development. In 2019, this will include M
onthly gsPN organizing calls as well as a
gathering (in-person and virtual) during Somatics and Trauma Advanced
✔️ gs Teacher Training - Intermediate and Advanced:
We will continue to grow the capacity of both intermediate and advanced gs teachers to be prepared to lead a greater number of courses and movement partnerships in years to come.
✔️ gs Supervision:
Are you a somatic practitioner, a learning practitioner, a gs teacher, or someone who leads somatic practices inside of gs Movement Partnership? Are you a member of the gsPN, working with movement leaders? Do you run somatic healing groups? If so, this is for you!
First call is January 17, 2019.
Details and registration link can be found here.
Transformative Leaders in Philanthropy (TLP):
This is a program for foundation staff and board, as well as those who identify as major donors.
TLP will take place June 4th-7th on the east coast.
More information can be found here
Embodied Donor Organizing:
There will be several opportunities to get involved with this work in 2019,
please contact us
to express interest and find out more.
Thank you for reading about our plans for 2019!
Also-- For gs students, alumni students, teachers, practitioners, movement partners, donors, and funders, please join us for a --
Also-- if you are a
current gs student, alumni student, gs teacher, practitioner, movement partners, donors, and funders. Please join us on JANUARY 28TH for a gs COMMUNITY CALL to discuss our 2019 plans to build gs for the long haul. For details and to register, click here.