The organizers of the Women's March on Washington have declared March 8, 2017 the day of the National General Strike.
But this Friday, Feb. 17, is a day for events that build toward the series of strikes.
In defense of the U.S. Constitution, we are called to not go to work, school, or spend any money, unless it's absolutely necessary.
Instead, we're supposed to gather in protest and conversation surrounding President Donald Trump and his unconstitutional acts.
A billboard on SE Belmont St. has even been altered to raise awareness of the strike.
This isn't a day to watch HBO Go at home, which is the true definition of slacktivism. Instead, attend a protest or take an action against President Trump. There's also a full list on the strike's website of how to participate.
You can also head out for some non-committal volunteer opportunities. We asked non-profits if they would have drop-in volunteer opportunities available on Feb. 17.
Here are three local nonprofits that do:
Oregon Food Bank
7900 NE 33rd Drive, 282-0555, oregonfoodbank.org.
1 pm – 4 pm.
On Feb. 17, from 1 to 4 pm, they'll be able to accommodate 80 drop-in volunteers, who will assist with repacking food for families. The shift starts at 1pm, and they ask that you please be on time.
If you have any questions, you can contact Jeff Horne.
Children's Book Bank
1915 NE 7th Avenue, 616-3981, childrensbookbank.org.
10 am – 2 pm.
The Children's Book Bank provides books to children in Portland-area households, giving families the opportunity to read together.
On their website, the Children's Book Bank writes that children from low-income households enter first grade with an average of 25 hours of one-to-one book reading, compared with 1,000+ hours for children from middle-class homes. They want to help close this gap by making reading more accessible.
For those who come from 10 am-2 pm, the Children's Book Bank will be taking apart packages of new books and resorting them into boxes. At 2 pm, they'll be running our standard volunteer book cleaning group where guests will help repair and clean donated used books by removing scribbles/stickers, fixing spines and wiping them down. If you want to attend the book cleaning group, make sure to show up by 2 pm, so you can receive instructions on time.
Contact Todd Diskin if you have any questions.
5151 NW Cornell Rd, 292-6855, audubonportland.org.
9 am – 12 pm
The mission of the Audubon Society of Portland is to "inspire people to love and protect nature."
On February 17, from 9 am to 12 pm, they'll be hosting a sanctuary work party for volunteers, to help clear damages from the recent storms.
Contact Rick Myers if you have any questions.
There are also places that can't take drop-in volunteers, but are looking for new volunteers. Friday, Feb. 17 could even be spent emailing a volunteer coordinator to set up something regular.
Portland Tennis & Education
7519 N Burlington Ave., 823-3629, ptande.org.
The mission of PT&E is to strengthen and inspire families through after-school programming, a summer enrichment series and community development/engagement events for scholar athletes between the ages of 3 and 18. They also run a dual-language immersion pre-school program, a high school academy and an after school enrichment program.
610 SW Alder St. #921, 235-2500, marathonscholars.org.
Marathon Scholars matches adults with low-income and at-risk youth to provide long-term mentorship opportunities to help make college a possibility.
If you want to make more than an afternoon of commitment to enacting change, and have a long-term impact on the educational outcomes of Portland youth, stop by the Marathon Scholars office to discuss their open mentoring opportunities. They require a minimum of a bachelor's degree plus a four-year plan to stay in Portland.