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Reflections on The Transgressing Barriers: Care as a Transformative Practice Workshop

Updated: Apr 25, 2023

The Transgressing Barriers: Care as a Transformative Practice workshop was incredible! It was all about care and how we envision individual care and all our relations. We’re still processing feelings and emotions, yet aware that practicing care is not just a personal responsibility, but a collective one.

We want to acknowledge the beautiful way Bishop shared their lived experiences, their research framework, and how they are challenging the colonial ways of the Education system on Turtle Island (while also having the most charming sense of humour). Focusing on infusing pathways for Queer, Trans, Black, Indigenous and otherwise racialized people of colour (QTBIPOC), they are sharing about a radical form of care that centers on solidarity across lines of difference, creating this profoundly transformative practice. We used art-based practices to discover our own sense of care ethics and reflect on where they come from. It was so powerful! 🌟

The workshop challenged us to think about what our world could look like if care was the organizing principle. To re-imagine a world where we move slowly, value resting, and gather intentionally, and instead of simply canceling people, we need to engage in transformative justice practices that prioritize community care, accountability, and healing. It's a beautiful vision, isn't it? ❤️

Some of our key takeaways include:

  • Community is built around shared experiences, and intergenerational relationships with elders provide invaluable guidance, especially for QTBIPOC communities

  • A queer, trans ethic of care is “nuanced, expansive, disruptive, and transgressive”

  • “An individualized practice that takes place within a care web” - individualized, in the sense that every individual would like to receive care in different ways, and assuming sameness can cause harm

  • Should we have to be resilient? We’re tired! Capitalism wants us to be empty and depleted, but should we always have to be able to get up and keep fighting in the same way every day? (spoiler alert: no!)

  • Contemplating “how do we create care across lines of difference?” - not only providing care when it impacts you or people you know, but when it impacts people you don’t know and even people you don’t understand or agree with

As a social enterprise and mutual aid group, it's critical to reflect about how we can contribute to this vision of care and solidarity. What are our own care ethics? How can we work towards building stronger, more connected communities centred in care? These are the questions that this workshop helped us to reflect on.

We’re so grateful for this experience in partnership with Plenty Collective, City of Victoria My Great Neighbourhood, and Fernwood NRG, supporting the vision to create more opportunities for people to attend workshops like this. It's so important for us to come together, share our experiences, and build a vision for a more just and caring world. #communitycare #QTBIPOC #solidarity #transformativejustice #artbasedpractices #organizingprinciple #grateful #reflection #workshops #partnerships

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