MRC has been dedicated to building community through cultural and political education, antiracism organizing, and cross-cultural movement building for 30 years!
HOW DID MRC BEGIN 30 YEARS AGO?
The Multicultural Resource Center was formed in 1987 by Marcia Fort, a woman of color & leader in the community and Eileen Brown a white ally, as a project of the Greater Ithaca Activities Center (GIAC). It formed to address the lack of ethnic, cultural cross-community understanding in schools and communities in Ithaca by starting a multicultural resource library located in the Beverly J. Martin public elementary school. The MRC was incorporated in 1998 by Audrey Cooper, an indigenous woman and community leader who helped widen MRC’s scope of programs and projects.
WHAT DOES MRC DO FOR OUR COMMUNITY TODAY?
Talking Circles On Race & Racism * “The New Jim Crow” Community Book Read * Youth Organizing Fellowship * Ultimate Reentry Opportunity * First Peoples’ Festival * Sister Friends * Workshops & Trainings * Artist & Film Series * Lending Resources * Community Voices * Community Projects & Partnerships
MRC HIGHLIGHTS OF 2016:
The New Jim Crow Community Read organized 800 unique participants, 35 book groups, 8 monthly events, distributed 2,000 books, and decisively shifted community narrative and capacity for action around incarceration & racially biased policing.
We fully redesigned the curriculum and coordination process of the Talking Circles on Race and Racism to meet contemporary community needs, recruited 8 new facilitators, and ran 6 redesigned circles for 57 participants.
MRC’s cultural events including the First Peoples’ Festival, Artist and Film Series, Sister Friends, Community Voices, and the Muslim Mural Project brought together over 4,400 participants to increase community-building and building arts and cultural strategies for social change.
125 people attended MRC’s Inauguration Day Bystander Intervention Training which provided community members with tools and skills to address hate crimes showing up in public.
The Ultimate Reentry Opportunity has created a unique space for collective, coordinated work that’s influencing cultural and systemic shift to significantly increase successful reentry and reduce recidivism for people returning from Prison and Jail. In 2016 URO engaged 85+ community stakeholders, 35% representing formerly incarcerated individuals engaged in planning, decision-making, and implementation of this work.
11 Youth Organizing Fellowship fellows (picture to right) registered 75 Northside residents for a pilot Participatory Budgeting project, gathered 50+ letters to the Gov. Cuomo for the successful Raise the Age NY campaign, and raised $3,500 to attend the 2 ½ day Commonbound Conference in Buffalo, NY.