Right before the summer break, we would like to sum up the first four rounds of FundAction Talks: the new series of podcasts made by FA with the voices of our members and grantees.

FA Talks aims to highlight members’ activities, funded through FA’s grants.
We decided to dedicate the first set of Podcast sessions to #Resist, which awards members with small, rapid response grants, and, therefore, allows the community to meet urgent needs as they are expressed on the ground and experienced by affected people.
In 2020, the Resist trial was opened sooner than planned due to the needs that emerged at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis. Members were invited to think about wider needs, such as these in their communities outside of FundAction, and were therefore allowed to eventually apply on their behalf.


In the Talk #2,
Culture during the Pandemic, our member, grantees & Podcast’s Host Diana Filimon talk with Aleksandar Popović (Serbia) and Vladimir Us (Moldova) about the impact of Covid-19 on the cultural sector and the cooperative solutions which their countries and organizations are adopting.

Aleksandar speaks about the joint action of Station – Service for Contemporary Dance with Association of Independent Culture of Serbia, the Visual Arts Association (ULUS), the Vojvodina Visual Arts Association (SULUV), the Association of Art Critics (AICA) and the Association of Applied Arts Artists and Designers of Serbia (ULUPUDS) to establish the Cultural Workers’ Solidarity Fund, available to all artists and cultural workers who had not any alternative sources of income, yet whose contribution to Serbia’s cultural life is significant. Likewise, Vladimir for Oberlith Organization introduces the Coalition of the Independent Culture Sector from the Republic of Moldova (CICS): an informal platform of around twenty culture organizations started in 2019 around the preexisting Zemstvei Culture Center in Chișinău, with the aim to improve the working conditions of independent artists, cultural organizations and initiatives in our region. Their aim is to act collectively and engage in a more direct dialogue with local and national public authorities.

 

Talk #3 is dedicated to the Solidarity movements and projects developed and consolidated in response to Covid-19 by Gólya Szövetkezet (Budapest) and Pervolarides (Thessaloniki), respectively introduced by Gergő Birtalan and Filippos Polatsidis.

The conversation revolves around the projects’ focus on creating solidarity among people and helping them build upon this: Gólya is a Community House and Cooperative which operates based on a social mission, building a community around them, and that recently started a bike courier service in order to help the crisis relief effort locally.
Pervolarides is a diverse community formed by volunteers in 2013 that supports an increasing number of people who are struggling to survive and meet their basic needs, and who experience socioeconomic exclusion because of the loss of income, homelessness, or because they are classified as refugees and migrants.

How to generate an alternative paradigm of solidarity and long-lasting social cooperation within a community? How to show that it is possible to live differently and to substitute fear with solidarity through collective actions are only a few of the topics we discussed with Gergő and Filippos.

 

Talk #4 with Vlada Thor provides us with an insight into the effects of Covid19 in Russia on the Lesbians community.

The project has been proposed by our member Silvia Casalino & the EuroCentralAsian Lesbian* Community (EL*C) and forecasts the extension of the LLL (LOCKED-DOWN LESBIANS LISTENING) to Russian speaking Lesbians women and its profound need.
LLL was launched at the beginning of April as a specific response to the first calls-for-help received from the community in the early stages of the Covid-19 crisis. LLL was a safe space that twice a day, 7 days a week, gave a virtual collective room for lesbians people from all countries to meet, but only in English. The advantage of reaching a wider amount of people, which has been made possible by the online meeting, had nevertheless to be balanced and associated with the Russian language dedicated sessions.


We will be back with on August 24th with Talk #5 which will present the work of our member Joelle Sambi Nzeba: a writer, poet, and lesbian activist, co-chair of EuroCentralAsian Lesbian Community and member of Mothers and Daughters, a Lesbian* and Trans* Bar*? with Café Congo & initiator of the slam poetry project/group Koko Slam Gang.

Listen to all our FA Talks on Spotify and Anchor.

Wish you all a great summer break.