The rain went away and the sun came out over Mount Jefferson as our members launched Down Home’s newest chapter– right here in Ashe County!
Gathered together in a picnic shelter in West Jefferson, nearly 45 local Ashe County residents talked together and visualized the fair, equitable, and resilient community they want to create. “This is a great place where people work together,” explained one Down Home member. “That’s our mountain values and it goes back a long way. But recently the politics of division have been challenging that and we need to organize intentionally to bring it all back together.”
“This area is beautiful,” says Ashe County organizer Dolly Reaves. “But behind all that beauty is real hardship. I want to build with everyone here to make our county work for all of us.”
Down Home’s vision is to build political power by helping unite poor and working people in the area with the issues we all care about. During conversations in Ashe County, adults of all ages talked through their experiences to get at what it means to live a healthy life within a larger community.
The chapter launch comes on the heels of an extensive and ongoing “deep listening project” where local members and canvassers have been talking to local residents about what concerns them and what they would like to see change in their community.
New Ashe County chapter members will next work on creating their local platform, which they will then use to make endorsements for the 2022 election cycle.
If you are interested in becoming a member in Ashe County or would like to get involved in the platform creation or endorsement process, please contact Dolly at [email protected]