#MarchingWithMe — Partnering the Women’s March on Washington and Individuals with Disability and Chronic Illness
It’s hard to separate our individual experiences of the world from the bodies in which we live.
When we’re feeling strong and powerful, we readily take on challenges and mightily knock them down with force. Face those same challenges with flu, and the battle goes swiftly downhill while we barely keep our seat. Living with chronic illness, many days feel like the latter. Sometimes, we can’t even make it to the battlefield.
On January 21st, 2017 more than 180,000 people are expected to attend the Women’s March on Washington. Standing together under the belief that “women’s rights are human rights”*, the event is slated to be the largest in history set for a president’s first day in office, with satellite marches scheduled in forty-one states as well.
While organizers have promised accessibility for those with disability, participating in the four-mile march and rally is impossible for many of us with disability and chronic illness.
For those who are unable to attend the march or a local January 21st protest, we offer an alternative.
#MarchingWithMe pairs volunteer participants in the Women’s March on Washington and those with disability or chronic illness who have a burning desire to attend but are not physically able.
Marchers will receive an email with a letter-sized banner to print of the name and email of their Supporter, which they’ll then pin to their coat and wear on the march so that their marcher will be “Marching with Me”. Participants will be invited to share photos and experiences with their partner on the day, fostering community and sisterhood while we “stand together in solidarity*”… though some of us may be sitting!
Marchers provide their name and email address. Supporters provide their name, email address, and a photograph for us to upload to our template. (Registration open through January 17th.) Our organizers will connect a Marcher with their Supporter via email, along with an image to be printed out on a letter-sized (8.5x11”) piece of paper, pinned to the Marcher’s coat, and worn on the march.
While we encourage communication between Marchers and Supporters, all that’s required is that Marchers and Supporters march together with #MarchingWithMe, so that our fullest and most vibrant community is visually represented together at the Women’s March on Washington.