The Forward Stance Leadership Initiative (FSLI) is a project of Asian Communities for Reproductive Justice (ACRJ). Its purpose is to share the principles of Forward Stance with other social justice activists, whether they be intermediaries, meta-intermediaries, or those doing work on the frontlines.
The first FSLI gathering happened in June 2010, the second in November 2010. Over 15 organizations participated in the 2- day training. For the first time in November 2010, ACRJ also offered Forward Stance 101 for those interested in being introduced to these practices.
Forward Stance has four core elements: Stance, Awareness, Energy, and Rhythm. It was developed by ACRJ and Norma Wong of the Applied Zen Program from the Institute of Zen Studies.
From the ACRJ Web site, “Forward Stance helps individuals and organizations proactively face the personal and professional challenges of organizing and movement building. Forward Stance uses a series of physical practices that incorporates mind-body learning, physical stance and development of the breath from which coordination, awareness, alignment, and collective movement can be achieved…
Forward Stance practices provide a daily way to embody the change we hope to see within ourselves, our organizations and our society as a whole. Forward Stance can be done on the individual level through breath and energy development, at the organizational level through strategic visioning and organizational culture, and at the movement level through alliance building and cooperative action.”
Participants in the last gathering included CXC (Center for Transformative Change), Rockwood Leadership Institute, Generative Somatics, Movement Strategy Center, POWER, Rebecca Project for Human Rights, General Service Foundation, Colorado Organization for Latina Oppotunity and Reproductive Rights (COLOR), National Asia Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), Law Students for Reproductive Justice, Choice USA, Young Women United, Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health, Mobilize the Immigrant Vote, Center for Young Women’s Development.
The next FSLI gathering will be held September 26-28, 2011.
For more information on Forward Stance and FSLI, email Dana Ginn-Paredes at ACRJ.