Below are some of the basic principles that shape our programs. To read more about our theory and practice, click here.
Wildfire Programs Are Free For Participants
In order to ensure that Wildfire can serve the groups and individuals who need it most – on the front lines of crisis – participants never pay to be in Wildfire programs, although they are asked to contribute in other ways depending on the circumstance. The Wildfire Project works with group organizers and members to fundraise for the program from a diversity of sources (individuals, foundations, and organizations), but never in a way that would jeopardize the autonomy of the programming. Wildfire is determined to move new resources towards groups rather than sapping already existing funds, and it is committed to developing new ways to bring more resources into the movement altogether.
We Design Programs to Meet Real Needs
We build careful educational curricula drawing from a diversity of mentors, sources, theories, inspirations, and experiences. We develop workshops that go across specific groups and issues. At the same time, we make our plans based on the real needs of real people in real struggles, so we rewrite our work each time we train, and we aren’t afraid to improvise or change course based on the changing world around us. We spend a good deal of time learning from and about the groups we make partnerships with in order to craft processes that will challenge them and help them meet their own goals. Wildfire works to build spaces that meet people where they’re at and support a variety of needs at once; we are attentive to age, ability, class, race, gender, sex, and sexual orientation, and we design our workshops with the understanding that people learn and express themselves in different ways, at different paces, and with different results.
Wildfire Builds Balanced Training Teams
The Wildfire Project is committed to building diverse and balanced training teams that account for a variety of experiences and backgrounds in terms of race, class, gender, sex, and sexual orientation. We do this not merely for representational purposes, but because we believe our training team must carry a diversity of experiences in this world (on top of skills and organizing experience) in order to hold even just some of the complexity that our groups undoubtedly face as they transform themselves and one another in struggle.
The Wildfire Project offers childcare for its programming when relevant and requested. We believe it is our responsibility to provide support structures that allow all group members to participate, especially historically marginalized or oppressed groups, and offering childcare is one example of that effort. Also, we love kids (and love the multigenerational spaces we’ve been able to create by inviting them into the Wildfire community). Wildfire facilitators (and allies who pitch in to support and volunteer) often use childcare time not only for play, but for learning and teaching as well.