As someone who’s been involved in progressive politics for almost half a lifetime, I have great admiration and appreciation for people who have dedicated their lives to activism and organizing. Most of us in the progressive movement are part-time activists; we choose to be involved because we care, but our obligations to work/school and family limit the time we’re able to give.
But there are a few among us who are full-time activists. Not consultants or lobbyists, mind you… consulting and lobbying gigs typically come with decent compensation. I’m talking about people who have deliberately chosen to forgo opportunities to make money in favor of trying to build community.
People like Geov Parrish.
Geov has been writing, organizing, and agitating for a more progressive region and country since before there was a blogopshere or a netroots community. Remarkably, he’s persevered at activism despite battling many health problems.
This Wednesday will mark the twentieth anniversary of his double organ transpant (kidney and pancreas!). Doctors told him years ago he didn’t have much time left, but decades later, he’s still around, trying to make our region a better place.
I am personally grateful to Geov for showing up to support NPI at some of our events, particularly our annual Spring Fundraising Gala in April, and donating what he could. He really believes in building community and encouraging other progressives. I so appreciate that, as does everyone else here at NPI.
Geov recently wrote to me and many other friends to let us know that he and his fiancée Revel Smith could really use some help. They’re broke and homeless, having struggled for months to find a place to live, in part because Revel has multiple sclerosis and a sensitivity to many chemicals. For those interested in all the details, Geov’s penned a December missive (2014 – It Was Not A Very Good Year) and given permission for us to share it with you.
It’s one thing to endure being broke and homeless; it’s another thing altogether to summon the courage to ask for help to escape those circumstances.
Geov has done that, and I’m really glad he did. Until he sent out his letter, many of his friends were unaware of his situation. But now we know what’s going on. That means we can emphasize and respond.
Principled progressives walk their talk and reach out to help those in need. Geov has a progressive work ethic and is capable of working, but before he can focus on getting a job, he and Revel need to get out of survival mode.
That’s where we come in. HA Seattle and NPI are teaming up to help Geov and Revel. We’re asking our readers and supporters to join us in giving them a hand up.
If you’re willing to spare a few dollars to assist a good progressive activist in need, please click this PayPal button to send money Geov and Revel’s way.
You can also send Geov a check in the mail:
PO Box 85541
Seattle WA 98145
Building NPI has been adventure in more ways that I could have imagined when I set out over eleven years ago to set up a strategy center dedicated to innovative research and imaginative advocacy. Our work has always been sustained by the generosity of fellow activists — including people like Geov Parrish.
I hope you’ll consider helping Geov, so that next December, he’ll be able to tell us that 2015 was a good year filled mostly with positive changes.