On January 28th, the Jamaica Plain Mothers Out Front team continued its tradition of hosting a winter open house – a chance to meet neighbors, introduce Mothers Out Front, share stories, and hear informally from a local speaker, the perfect cure for New England winter doldrums. Viki Bok hosted our first such event a couple of years ago in the midst of a snowstorm, which even with the weather attracted some very motivated newcomers to our team.
This year, Seton Lindsay hosted a similar event, attracting a mix of new friends and neighbors as well as existing team members. We had time to get to know each other, eat some delicious food, and then hear from a captivating speaker, Dr. Brita Lundberg, a member of the Occupational and Environmental Health Committee at the MA Medical Society and MA Health Professionals for Clean Energy. Dr. Lundberg talked about the serious negative health impacts of methane (aka “natural”) gas. She shared her own story of getting involved in this issue when a utility threatened to build a pipeline across a beautiful piece of land her family owned in West Virginia. Dr. Lundberg sang Mothers Out Front’s praises, noting that as she's spoken to local boards of health across the state, whenever a Mothers Out Front member gave testimony at the same time, the request was fulfilled. Several times, she said, she was convinced that it was the mother's voice that turned the tide in the discussion. Such a great morale booster for long-time Mothers Out Front supporters, and such a great incentive for those new to the group!
Each of the new women that attended were interested in taking next steps with us (and one even gave us a $50 donation on the spot)! And the event teed up our next community event – an induction stove cooking party on March 4th, part of our ongoing effort to change the narrative about “natural” gas.