Tessara's Summer Survival Fund
Organized by: Tessara Dudley
I'm a social justice activist and indie press publisher living in Portland, OR. I'm also disabled, and a college student. I saved money from my job and financial aid, and a couple of friends have been generous in supporting me in the past, but I don't have the funds I need to get me to the school year and my next financial aid refund. I am on food stamps, so food is (mostly) covered, but I need to be able to pay my share of the rent and bills on my apartment for August and September.
I'm asking for $900, which will cover September's rent, the internet and electricity bills for August and September, my medication costs, and a bus pass to get me to my doctor's visits and therapy appointments, as well as to the grocery store and other places. Money raised beyond that will ensure I can cover my food costs, support me in my work, help me pay off medical debt, and get me to the Bay Area to attend NOLOSE, an amazing conference I've gotten a scholarship to.
I attend Portland State University, where I am less than a year from achieving a Bachelor of Arts in Black Studies. I hope eventually to reach a PhD in History and to become a teacher. I run a small press named Mourning Glory Publishing and write poetry and essays.
- I write for Black Girl Dangerous and the Portland Observer.
- My press recently launched a book to raise funds for Black community equity organizations, titled After Ferguson, In Solidarity.
- I travelled to Ferguson, MO, in August 2014 to bring donated supplies and provide direct community support.
- I am one of the admins on the "Fists Up Or/Wa: a Ferguson Solidarity Community" Facebook page.
- I've presented workshops on media and storytelling at the Oregon Queer Youth Summit, the Queer Students of Color Conference, and the Oregon Students of Color Conference.
- I have worked with and volunteered for several organizations in the community, including: Cascade AIDS Project, the Vanport Multimedia Project, the Sexual and Gender Minority Youth Resource Center (SMYRC), and the Oregon Student Association, the Associated Students of PSU.
- My most recent job was Queeries Coordinator at PSU: I coordinated the LGBTQ2+ speaker's bureau run by the university's Queer Resource Center.
- I have helped to put on several conferences, including the Oregon Student Equal Rights Alliance Symposium (2013), and the Queer Students of Color Conference (2011, 2012, 2014, 2015).
- I advocate for and with people from marginalized communities, including Black, Indigenous, people of color, LGBTQ2+, chronically ill and disabled, impoverished, houseless, and more. I am devoted to equity for all people, which is why I started my press: to boost the voices of writers with a unique perspective, often considered too risky by larger publishing companies.
Why support me? I am dedicated to creating access and equity in my community, and money that supports me supports my community. I am about collective uplift!
If you'd prefer to buy something, I have a book of poetry for sale.