July 2012
Inside Appalachian Community Fund

4 Bands, 1 Woman, 2 Hours of the Blues

ACF Co-Hosts Social Justice Movie Night
Join Appalachian Community Fund and the Birdhouse Knoxville in a screening of Music from the Big House, a movie/documentary that tells the story of inmates who find release in music. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with songwriter and performer, Rita Chiarelli. Join us at Relix Variety Theatre (1208 N Central Street, Knoxville, TN) on Saturday, July 14, 2012 at 9:00 p.m. Cost of admission is $12. Click here for more information.

More ACF News

Health Justice

I've been thinking a lot about health lately. I'm sure that's been influenced by the recent Supreme Court ruling on health care and the ongoing fight for the landmark law, which has divided Americans and helped fuel the further division between Democrats and Republicans. And it's also been influenced by watching Unnatural Causes, a documentary series exploring socio-economic and racial inequities in health.

I have a hard time wrapping my mind around this issue and keep saying and asking myself, "If we are able to ensure that everyone has equal access to healthcare, it would make us all stronger and healthier. Isn't that something that we all want?" Then I'm reminded, no, it's not what we all want. As a matter of fact, there are those creating stress, making laws, policies, and setting costs for care and treatment to ensure that it doesn't happen.

Indicators are, with the current inequities that exist, the life expectancy of our children's generation will be less than our generation! Let's work together to change that.

Health equity and health justice are the work of social justice. This is just one issue and one reason why the work that ACF supports is so important. ACF provides organizations that are on the ground everyday with the financial and technical resources they need to change the way things are to the way they should be.

Do you want to be part of the change?
I am sharing a few online resources below for those who are engaged in the work and for those who are interested in becoming more involved with the work.

You can also become involved and support health justice in Central Appalachia by making a financial contribution to ACF today, either online or by contacting me at 865-523-5783.

Keep making change ya'll.

Peace, love and light,

Margo Miller

Online Resources for Health Justice
Unnatural Causes

UNNATURAL CAUSES is the acclaimed documentary series broadcast by PBS and now used by thousands of organizations around the country to tackle the root causes of our alarming socio-economic and racial inequities in health. The four-hour series crisscrosses the nation uncovering startling new findings that suggest there is much more to our health than bad habits, health care, or unlucky genes. The social circumstances in which we are born, live, and work can actually get under our skin and disrupt our physiology as much as germs and viruses.

National Association of County Health Officials

NACCHO's Health Equity and Social Justice initiatives explore why certain populations bear a disproportionate burden of disease and mortality and what health departments can do to better address the causes of these inequities. The goal of NACCHO's Health Equity and Social Justice initiatives is to advance the capacity of local health departments (LHDs) to tackle the root causes of health inequities through public health practice and their organizational structure.

The Roots of Health Inequity
The Roots of Health Inequity is an online learning collaborative. The site offers a starting place for those who want to address systemic differences in health and wellness that are, actionable, unfair, and unjust. As a participant in the learning collaborative you will have a chance to explore concepts and strategies by working through five critical questions.

Commission for a Healthier America

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America looks beyond the medical care system to investigate how factors such as education, environment, income, housing and personal health choices impact the health of all Americans and ultimately provide better opportunities for Americans in every community to grow up and stay healthy. Even with decades of effort to improve America's health care system, too many Americans still die earlier than they should, and too many are suffering from conditions that can be prevented.

New From the Region
UBS - Philadelphia
UBS - Philadelphia "Hands Off Appalachia!"
Hands Off Appalachia! Campaign:
Get Involved!

People from all over the United States united during the Occupy National Gathering & the Radical Convergence to march on Philadelphia's UBS branch located at 1735 Market Street. This action was taken in conjunction with a Southern Appalachian-based email & call-in day targeting the same branch. UBS is one of the top funders and supporters of the harmful extractive process known as Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining [MTR]. We say,"HANDS OFF APPALACHIA!" and demand UBS change their official policy and stop funding companies that engage in mountaintop removal. Ways to get involved:

The video was produced by ACF grantee Melange, who provides coalition building in community, assisting with local organizers in the development of their own actions around the Hands off Appalachia! Campaign. Mélange provides logistical and location-specific material support and documentation for locally-produced actions in support of the campaign.

Grant Opportunity for Child Health

Deadline to Apply is August 20, 2012

The purpose of the "Mini-grant" program of the National Children's Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety (NCCRAHS) is to support small-scale projects and pilot studies that address prevention of childhood agricultural disease and injury. Individuals affiliated with community-based organizations, public or private institutions, units of local or state government, or tribal government throughout the United States are eligible to apply for funds. Applicants are encouraged to collaborate with NIOSH Agricultural Research Centers or Universities on project design and evaluation. Priority will be given to organizations and junior faculty who are building their capacity in childhood agricultural health and safety, and those that generate new partnerships. Please click here for more information.

New Online Marketplace for Appalachian Entrepreneurs

Shop to Support Locally-Controlled Economy

Check out Mountainhugger.com, a new online marketplace for small businesses based in Appalachia, where doing business is doing good. Mountainhugger.com vendors seek to support themselves in ways that sustain healthy lives for themselves and their families, healthy local communities, and healthy regional ecosystems. Vendors will offer a wide variety of products and services, including but not limited to traditional Appalachian craft work. Each vendor will have an individual "store" on the site with its own cash register. Vendor fees will be low enough for even very small businesses, and vendors will benefit from marketing for the site. If you'd like more information, want an email announcement when the marketplace is up and running in September, or think you might want to become a Mountainhugger.com vendor, please email tricia@mountainhugger.com.

Black Lung Grows as Mining Regulations Shrink

Click here to read the article from National Public Radio.

Source: Coal Workers' Health Surveillance Program (CWHSP), NIOSH

Credit: Alyson Hurt / NPR

Still: The Journal Publishes 9th Issue and Invites Contest Submissions

Click Here to Visit the Website

The editors of Still: The Journal announce the publication of Issue 9 of the online literary journal devoted to contemporary literature of the Appalachian South. Still features fiction, nonfiction, poetry, interviews, photography, and multimedia. Editors invite writers to enter Still's Third Annual Literary Contests in fiction, nonfiction and poetry. Complete guidelines are available online. Deadline is August 31, 2012. Judges are Charles Dodd White (fiction), Jesse Graves (poetry) and Joyce Dyer (nonfiction). Still: The Journal welcomes submissions during the annual reading period (December 1-31 of each year). For more information contact:

Silas House, Fiction Editor: fiction@stilljournal.net

Jason Howard, Nonfiction Editor: nonfiction@stilljournal.net

Marianne Worthington, Poetry Editor: poetry@stilljournal.net

Festival Fun + Helping Appalachian Voices = Summer Must Do

Sustainable Event Supports Regional Non-profit

Music on the Mountaintop is fun; plain and simple. Nestled at the foot of Grandfather Mountain, MOTM offers large scale festival feel with an intimate experience. Built upon sustainable and green practices, MOTM sets itself apart by its efforts to bring great music to Boone and to limit its environmental footprint. If you've ever found yourself sitting in your hot, muggy cubical at work day dreaming of beautiful mountain air, breathtaking sceneries, and great people, then Music on the Mountain is the place for you. The event will take place August 24-26. Click here for more information about Music on the Mountain and here for more information about Appalachian Voices.

Opportunities in Central Appalachia

Fellowship Available for Artists, Activists

Deadline to Apply is July 20, 2012 at 9pm PST

As part of the Micro-Fest USA initiative, the Network of Ensemble Theaters is inviting applications for the inaugural Micro-Fest Fellowship Program, a leadership development opportunity targeting artists and their community peers/collaborators who are collectively engaging in community development and creative placemaking. The fellowship is only available to artists and community members in Detroit, Appalachia (Knoxville, TN/Harlan, KY), New Orleans and Honolulu. Contact Mark Valdez with questions and click here for the application.

SOCM Needs Community Organizer with Environmental Focus

Energy, Ecology and Environmental Justice

SOCM is a member-led organization that works to give citizens in Tennessee a voice in determining their future. SOCM encourages civic involvement and collective action in an effort to empower citizens. Please click here to read the job description or to apply.

Highlander Accepting Applications
Openings for Development Team Member and Assistant to E.D.

Highlander is world-renowned as a beacon for progressive organizing and widely acclaimed as a leadership development center for grassroots activists across race, culture and generations. Click here to view the job description.


Homeplace Under Seige from Blasting and Toxic Mine Run-Off

Poisoned Water, Broken Dreams

An article, written by Ronnie Ellis and published by the Daily Independent, tells the tale of Ricky Handshoe, a resident of Floyd County, Kentucky, whose home is now surrounded on three sides by mining operations. Handshoe says, "You know how when you have a baby you sleep with one ear open? That's what I do all the time now." Click here to read the full article. Thanks to Ronnie Ellis, the Daily Independent, and CNHI News. You can view a slideshow of images here.

Don't Forget to Listen to Mountain Community Radio

Click Below to Listen Live

Free Black Lung Screenings in Kentucky

July 16-July 20

The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health will be conducting free black lung screenings in eastern Kentucky. All coal miners are encouraged to stop by the mobile bus and participate in this free health exam. Typically, testing takes about 25 minutes and includes a short questionnaire, a chest x-ray, and a spirometry (breathing) test. Blood pressure screening will also be available. Although walk-ins will be accepted, miners are urged to call 1-888-480-4042 to schedule an appointment. Results are completely confidential. Clinic hours are 8am-8pm.

  • Monday July 16 - Walmart (254 Cassidy Blvd, Pikeville, KY)
  • Tuesday July 17 - Walmart (250 U.S. Hwy 119, Prestonburg, KY)
  • Wednesday July 18 - Redhawk Mining Office (1527 KY State Route 2030, Printer, KY)
  • Thursday July 19 - Roy F. Collier Community Center (287 E. Main Street, Inez, KY)
  • Friday July 20, 2012 - Roy F. Collier Community Center (287 E. Main Street, Inez, KY)

SOCM Knoxville Chapter Meeting

Partner with Concerned Citizens in East Tennessee

Come out on Monday, June 30th, for Statewide Organizing for Community eMpowerment's Knoxville Chapter meeting. The meeting will begin at 6pm and will conclude at 7:45pm. Please call for information about the meeting location or contact Katie Greer for more information, katie@socm.org.

Have Something to Say About Fracking?

Comments Accepted Through 4:30p.m. August 3rd

On July 10 the Tennessee Department of Environmental Conservation's Division of Water Resources held a public hearing about the regulation of fracking (also known as hydraulic fracturing) in Tennessee. Click here to see the proposed regulations. You can send your comments via email (michael.k.burton@tn.gov) or mail them to:

Mike Burton

TDEC, Div. of Water Resources
6th Floor, L&C Annex
401 Church Street
Nashville, TN 37243-1534
or Michael.K.Burton@tn.gov

Check out these links to learn more:

GASLAND Official Theatrical Trailer
GASLAND Official Theatrical Trailer

Help Celebrate Highlander's 80th Anniversary

Come for Learning, Celebrating, and Network Building


Stop Roll-Back of EPA Standards on Greenhouse Gasses

Public Hearing Announced for Virginia

The Subcommittee on Energy and Power will hold a public hearing on the "The American Energy Initiative" on Monday, July 16, 2012, at 9:00 a.m. at the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center (One Partnership Circle, Abingdon,Virginia). The hearing will focus on the Greenhouse Gas New Source Performance Standard (NSPS) for utilities and the impact this regulation will have on jobs. Witnesses will be announced and are by invitation only and the hearing webcast will be available here. Rees Shearer writes, "We are trying to get an invitation extended to pro-EPA witnesses . . . Sierra Club, National Resources Defense Council, National Wildlife Federation, the Lung Association, Appalachian Voices, Southern Appalachian Mountain Stewards and more . . . will provide logistical support, T-shirts and stickers, and a few action participants on the ground. Filling out the ranks of protesters standing up for climate action is our job locally and regionally." If you plan to attend please contact Rees Shearer, rrshearer@gmail.com.

Input Needed for Virginia Rural Health Plan

Conference to Follow in October

"You might be rural if..." sounds like the set-up for a joke. But the public health issues facing rural Virginia are no joke. Help the Virginia Public Health Association and the Virginia Rural Health Association identify and prioritize the most relevant issues by participating in our brief survey. The data will be used to inform the discussions at the October 8 -9 Virginia Rural Health Action Conference in Charlottesville. We want to hear from everyone with a stake in the health of rural Virginia: we want to hear from YOU! Your input is highly valued and will help the conference participants identify the priority items for the updated Rural Health Plan. Click here to participate in the survey.

Virginia Organizing Hosts Annual Grassroots Gathering

Building Relationships, Empowering Communities

Every year, local chapters and supporters from across the state come together for Virginia Organizing's Annual Grassroots Gathering, an exciting day dedicated to learning new organizing skills and celebrating our organizing victories from the past year. Join us Saturday, August 11, from 9am-3pm at the University of Richmond (Haynes Commons). Please RSVP with your name, phone number and email address to your local organizer or Nik Belanger at 434-709-4953 or nik.belanger@virginia-organizing.org.

Who is Virginia Organizing?
Who is Virginia Organizing?

West Virginia

Notice of Public Forum in Summersville, WV

Share Your Input for the State Plan for Independent Living

Do you or a family member have a Disability? Do you have the supports & resources you need to live where you choose? The West Virginia Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) and the Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) are conducting a series of public forums. This is your opportunity to tell the SILC and DRS what you want included in the State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL). The SPIL governs how federal and state independent living funds are spent in WV in collaboration with the Centers for Independent Living. The public forum will be held July 16, 2012, from 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. at the Family Life Center (422 Main Street, behind Summersville Baptist Church on the corner of Whortleberry Avenue & Spruce Street). The Public Forums are open and accessible to the public. Requests for a sign language interpreter, alternate formats, or other accommodation needed to participate in the meetings must be made one week prior to the meeting. For more information or assistance contact Kathi Young at kathi.young@wvsilc.org or 1-855-855-9743.

Walk for Independence 2012

Save the Date!

The Walk for Independence 2012, our ninth, will be held on Saturday July 21, 2012 at Ritter Park in Huntington, WV. We'll walk, jog, run and roll the two mile Ritter Park walking path. Mountain State Centers for Independent Living is joined by the Tri-State Literacy Council in the Walk for Independence 2012. Mountain State Centers for Independent Living and the Tri-State Literacy Council share a common goal - that of opening doors to greater individual independence. Please click here for more information or to register online.

Action Mobilizing in West Virginia

End Mountaintop Removal!

Come to southern West Virginia on July 25. Radical Action for Mountain Peoples' Survival (RAMPS) will host a mobilization where people will prepare to take nonviolent direct action to shut down a strip mine. We are calling for as many people as possible to come together and do what the politicians, the regulators and the courts have been unwilling to do: to defend the land and the people and to stop strip mining. The success of this depends on your participation. Whatever your skills, availability, or ability to risk arrest, there are ways for you to make this mobilization a success. To join ongoing working groups or find out more about ways to participate, please email officespace@wg.rampscampaign.org. Click here for more information.

STAY Announces 2012 Summer Institute!

A Don't-Miss Event for Young Activists

We are bringing together youth (14-30) from throughout the region for a four day workshop in order to empower young people through a sense of place, promote leadership development, uphold our Appalachian identity through cultural arts and storytelling, and build personal relationships to sustain each other through our efforts. The Institute will happen August 2nd to 5th, 2012 at High Rocks Campground in Hillsboro, WV. Individuals and groups of all ages are encouraged put together a session. Visit STAY's wiki page by clicking here.

Great Resources for Organizers and Activists
$15 - Robin Hood Was Right: A Guide to Giving Your Money for Social Change
By Chuck Collins and Pam Rogers with Joan P. Garner

$15 - We Gave Away a Fortune

By Christopher Mogil and Anne Slepian with Peter Woodrow

$15 - You Can Do It!

A Volunteer's Guide to Raising Money for your Group in Words and Pictures

By Vicki Quatmann

$7 - Si, Todos Podemos! The Spanish edition of You Can Do It!

By Vicki Quatmann, Translated by Maria Pedro Bruce

$15 We Make Change; Community Organizers Talk About What They Do - and Why

By Kristin Layng Szakos and Joe Szakos

Click here to download an order form.

About Us


To get involved contact Margo Miller via

email margo@appalachiancommunityfund.org or by

phone 865-523-5783. Thank you for your continued

support of ACF and Central Appalachia. Here's to

another 25 years of Change, Not Charity!

Mission Statement
The Appalachian Community Fund funds and encourages grassroots social change in Central Appalachia. ACF works to build a sustainable base of resources to support community-led organizations seeking to overcome and address issues of race, economic status, gender, sexual identity, and disability. As a community-controlled fund, ACF offers leadership to expand and strengthen the movement for social change through its practices and policies.
25 Years Working for Social Change
Since its founding in 1987, ACF has awarded over $5 million for community organizing and social justice work to more than 300 grassroots organizations in Central Appalachia. Out motto - Change, Not Charity - reflects our vision to support social change organizing and our conviction that, by networking and partnering with organizations working to address the root causes of social, racial, economic and environmental problems facing Central Appalachia every day, we can create more just, equitable healthy communities with opportunities for every one. ACF has had a significant impact in our region. Please visit success stories and current grantees to find out more.

Appalachian Community Fund
507 South Gay Street
Suite 1120
Knoxville, TN 37902
865-523-5783 phone
865-523-1896 fax

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