Witchvox Year End 1996|
Author: Witchvox Central
Posted: December 31st. 1997
Times Viewed: 9,121
a personal statement by the TWV founders...
The Witches' Voice, Inc. IS a legal Corporation
(Some of the many things we do in terraspace)
OUR PURPOSE: or why we do this.
The Witches' Voice, Inc. was formed a legal non profit organization in 1997 for many reasons:
There was a need for a PAGAN RESOURCE center on the web. The need was there for clear and well developed educational materials for the Pagan and Non-Pagan alike.
There were numerous acts of DISCRIMINATION against Pagans. There are now many sites out there offering excellent basic info, but there are still only a few doing discrimination related case work specifically for Pagans. TWV aids these "freedom fighters' in the background by providing info and materials upon request. We handle many such cases ourselves. The Witches' Voice has formed many unofficial coalitions with other Pagan organizations doing the same work, as well as more mainstream anti-defamation civil rights organizations.
There was a cry for NETWORKING. We created and evolved the state/country pages so that Pagans, Pagan groups and Pagan shops could list their email addresses, events and workshops. They are listed by not only country and state, but now by city/town as well. We have faithfully updated these 371 state, country pages and the 10, 000 plus listings therein on a near daily basis without fail since our inception. We strongly encourage Pagans to become active at the local level, but we realize that you have to find one another first. These listings are offered free to the Pagan community. Please use them to strengthen your own area and town. The real fight for awareness and respect happen at a local level.
Corporations that exist in the terra world have real terra expenses, but salaries for us and the other volunteers are not part of them. The entire staff works for free.
What many do not realize is that TWV is NOT a web site. We are a real terraspace corporation that happens to also HAVE a web site. We worked very hard in 1997 to keep the web charges at an absolute minimum... Thanks to the beautiful Ari, we were to find one of the most reasonable and stable web site hosting on the 'Net. We pay 29.95 a month to Cetlink.net to host this web site.
A website doesn't cost all that much. The other things that we provide do. We DO buy the stationary. printer paper, stamps, envelopes. We have printing costs for the info packets. We have phone costs and lawyer fees. Presenting a professional presence through a corporation like TWV-when speaking to the media, contacting lawyers and fighting for reasonable and fair legislation-has helped us all to be taken seriously.
Who are WE responsible to financially?: We are financially accountable to the Old Ones, our sponsors and the US government. We are not accountable to anyone that sees no value in what we do.
THANKS TO OUR WONDERFUL SPONSORS:
The Witches' Voice does not charge for any of these services. The post offices, phone companies, internet service providers, copy printers and lawyers do. Our sponsors allow TWV to pay for services that are then passed along free to the Pagan community.
- We can counsel parents who are facing child custody fights because they are Pagan and provide them with legal documents, case precedents and offer moral support. We talk with their lawyers when necessary. We do research for them. Much of this is done by email, but occasionally we must make phone calls-or accept collect calls from Pagans who cannot afford to pay for the call themselves. We snail mail or fax info to their legal counsel. (Nearly 100% of the time, the parent wants this info to remain confidential. We keep it confidential.) We do not have to charge the Pagan parent anything for this assistance. Our sponsors make it possible.
- We can provide educational packages to Pagan students who are discriminated against for their religious choice and contact the appropriate school officials. By "appropriate", we mean ALL the officials. For every one packet that is sent to the school itself, 7-9 other packets also go out to the school superintendent, the state school board, the governor, attny general and legal counsel of the state in question and the U.S. Board of Education Office. Sometimes, it is the parent who contacts us. We send the student/parent a copy of the contents of the packages including the personalized letter that details as much as possible the reason for the complaint. (How much detail we cite depends on the terms of confidentiality that we have agreed to with the student/parent.) Each packet costs $2.92 each (that's $20-to $30. each time) to mail. We do not have to charge the student/parent for this assistance. Our sponsors make it possible.
- We can counsel Pagans by email and over the phone when their lives are just plain hell because their parents, spouse, schoolmates, friends, neighbors or family has found out that they are Pagan and cannot accept it-or worse, have turned against them. We do not charge for this counseling. Not exactly in our mission statement, but our sponsors don't seem to mind that we do it.
- We can send letters and educational packages to media reporters and outlets on Pagan issues. Each packet costs about $2.50 to mail. We send video tapes and contacts lists to those making documentaries showing Pagan religions in a positive light. We send support funds to other organizations who are doing the same thing. Our sponsors help to make all this possible.
What our sponsors see when they look at The Witches' Voice is a way to help others as well as themselves. By providing the funds to help those who are in these sad circumstances, they are investing in the health, safety and future of the Pagan community. It is not OUR money, it is YOUR money. TWV holds it in the deepest trust because we know that it came from giving Pagan hearts. It all goes back to Pagan community both through the website info and the terraspace assistance.
What YOU SEE is what YOU get... What YOU DON'T SEE is what OTHERS get:
Someone has said that Pagans do not value what they cannot see. We don't believe that is true.
There are the Pagan parents who fear that more public disclosure of their beliefs will endanger their chances of keeping their children. They will remain unknown to most people. But our sponsors care about them.Our sponsors DO care. They may never personally come to know any of these people that they have helped. Many of those who have requested aid have also requested confidentiality and we hold that trust sacred. They may be nameless and faceless to most, but because of our sponsors, they did not have to remain powerless.
There are the Pagan teens who go to schools in narrow minded towns. Yet they may want to stand up for their religion and beliefs somehow. Maybe they can't come forward. Maybe they are still afraid. But our sponsors care about them.
There are the seekers who are just finding this Path. They may not know who to ask or where to go. They may not be lucky enough to meet you or recognize that you are a fellow Pagan. But because of the networking section, they can contact others in their town, perhaps try an open circle or find a Pagan shop. Maybe we will never meet them. But our sponsors care about them.
They did not have to struggle alone. They did not have to worry alone. They did not have to feel alone. Because our sponsors cared...
Our online experience has been simply incredible... The love and support we have personally experienced from thousands is more than any Witch could ever dream of. Our sponsors made this possible. If YOU have enjoyed the Witches' Voice, go to your state page and toss them a piece of email. They made ALL of this possible and we could never thank them enough for all that they have done for the Pagan community.
In Your Service,
Founders - The Witches' Voice
(December 31st, 1997 c.e.)
Location: Clearwater¼, Florida
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