Welcome to the Western Mass Recovering Learning Community
The Western Mass Recovery Learning Community (RLC) supports healing and empowerment for our broader communities and people who have been impacted by psychiatric diagnosis, trauma, extreme states, homelessness, addiction and other life-interrupting challenges through:
- Peer-to-peer support & genuine human relationships
- Alternative Healing Practices
- Learning Opportunities
Essential to our work is recognizing and undoing systemic injustices such as racism, sexism, transphobia and psychiatric oppression.
The RLC is made up of PEOPLE (not places) and is wherever and however YOU and others from the community may choose to connect. Together, we offer a variety of events, workshops, trainings, advocacy and leadership councils, as well as a peer support line, three resource centers (Springfield, Greenfield, and Holyoke) and a Peer Respite in Northampton. Above all else, we create space for anyone who has a genuine interest in taking part in our community and holding its values to share and find connection, information, ideas and opportunities to make change in their own lives and/or the community around them. Our shared experiences and ‘humanness’ are what unite us. Our stories, collective wisdom and strength are what guide us and our community forward.
The Western Massachusetts Recovery Learning Community is funded, in part, by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health, the United Way of Franklin County, and a variety of private foundations and donations.
* Installing a shower
* Getting ready to host a food pantry (although it won’t be fully ready to go until we’re a bit further down the road)
* Moving some walls and doorways around so that we have a room specifically for meetings and groups, and a new designated kitchen spot.
* Setting up a gender-neutral bathroom in the space.
* Getting new rugs installed throughout the space
PSYCHO-PATH HAUNTED ASYLUM
"Experience the all-new PSYCHO-PATH Haunted Asylum coming to Fright Fest 2016. Wander through an abandoned asylum in small groups through tight spaces, darken corridors and forgotten cells. The inmates of the Asylum have broken loose and will have you screaming in sheer terror as they taunt and torture their newest victims.
Dr. Shockmoore will proudly showcase his latest in deranged experiments as you witness a lobotomy, shock treatment and isolation of his most insane and twisted patients. Will you escape or become Dr. Shockmoore’s latest experiment in his deranged and twisted plan?"
This haunted house is not only insulting and hurtful, but quite literally dangerous for all the terrible myths it re-enforces about the links between violence and people with psychiatric histories. (See this article, 'Gun Violence verses Psychiatric Diagnosis', for more on that myth.)
We are calling for immediate response from the community.
Although further action may be planned, at the moment, we are asking people to contact Park President, John Winkler, at the following address to request that the Aslyum exhibit be cancelled:
Six Flags New England
1623 Main Street
Agawam, Massachusetts 01001
Guest Relations 413-786-9300 x0
Any written communications may also be copied to the Six Flags corporate offices:
Six Flags Corporate Offices
924 Avenue J East
Grand Prairie, Texas 75050
230 Park Avenue, 16th Floor
New York, NY 10169
The University of Massachusetts will be holding a series of free talks throughout October, featuring a wide variety of speakers and presenters.
Other talks will include:
U.S. Neoslavery: A History of the Prison Industrial Present
Chained in Silence: A History of Black Women and Convict Labor
Resisting Police Violence in Springfield and Beyond:
Mothers, Scholars,and Queer People of Color Speak Out
A Conversation with Dr. Rhonda Y. Williams
For more information on these talks (including dates, times, and additional topic details), please click the "read more" below.
The RLC community is made up of people who’ve experienced psychiatric diagnosis, extreme states, trauma, and a variety of other life-interrupting challenges. Unquestionably, systemic oppression leads to trauma, and interruptions in one’s ability to lead a full life. In other words, racism is trauma, and as our mission statement says, “recognizing and undoing systemic injustices such as racism, sexism, transphobia and psychiatric oppression” is essential to our work.
Arthur Chu: “What is the impulse behind changing #BlackLivesMatter to #AllLivesMatter? Do you crash a strangers funeral shouting I TOO HAVE FELT LOSS?”
GeekAesthete (Reddit User): “Imagine that you’re sitting down to dinner with your family, and while everyone else gets a serving of the meal, you don’t get any. So you say “I should get my fair share.” And as a direct response to this, your dad corrects you, saying, “everyone should get their fair share.”
For more on this topic see: "What you Mean by #AllLivesMatter" by Arielle Newton.
- The importance of pronouns and accessibility for queer folk
- The power of conversations based in the language of human experience versus conversations confined to clinical language; and
- How we might honor each person's freedom to interpret experiences in any way while holding a healing space that does not tolerate hate speech on the lines of race, gender, sexuality and other experiences.