‘Like Any Other Kid’ – Jan Fourth Friday/Films of Vision and Hope

Friday Jan 22, 7-9:30 pm
RSVP to transitionpaloalto@gmail.com for the Zoom link

This month Fourth Friday/Film of Vision and Hope starts a new film series on transforming the criminal justice system. This month the series will start with Like Any Other Kid, which provides a rare glimpse into the use of non-punitive, therapeutic programs to change behavior and help youth re-enter their communities.

Special guest Paul Bocanegra will lead a discussion following the film. At age 17, Paul was sentenced to life without parole for involvement in a gang related crime. He served 25 years in adult institutions including 12 in solitary confinement. Released just a few years ago, Paul is now a member of the San Mateo County Juvenile Justice Commission as well as a drug and alcohol counselor and a co-founder of the ReEvolution Group non-profit. Paul will share his remarkable story and his passion for reforming the juvenile justice system.

Like Any Other Kid follows the intimate relationships between incarcerated youth and staff in three unique facilities across the country over the course of three years. Based on the Missouri approach, where love and structure — instead of punishment — are used, these programs guide and teach youth how to take responsibility for themselves.

Through scenes of conflict, vulnerability, reflection, commitment, and joy, the film highlights both the challenges and the promise of humane approaches to working with troubled youth. As the youth transform before our eyes. Like Any Other Kid shows us the great potential of these youth if we let them be just that: like any other kid. See the Trailer…

Third Friday – Virtual Holiday Gathering

Friday December 18, 2020
Please RSVP to transitionpaloalto@gmail.com for the Zoom link

Time to gather together (virtually) to celebrate our wonderful community and mark the end of the year. It’s been quite a ride this year, between the COVID pandemic, wildfires, economic upheaval, and political turmoil.

Though we can’t gather in person, we can Zoom in for a virtual potluck and celebration!

Bring a candle if you have one to help set the mood.

Come with your own ‘shop-your-kitchen’ dinner so we can dine together virtually.

Bring your favorite holiday beverage (tea, hot chocolate, eggnog, wine) so we can toast to the accomplishment of making it through the year!

Many lives have been lost this year, human and non-human. Is there someone you would like to acknowledge? Bring a photo or something that reminds you of the person or animal, or a memory to share.

And let’s reflect together: How have things been for you this year? What have you learned and how have you grown? What do you want to carry into the new year?

See you on the 18th!

Third Friday – Nov 20: The Third Harmony

Friday November 20, 2020
Watch and discussion party
Please download and take a look at these questions before we see the film.
For the Zoom link, text stepup to 31996

For Third Friday this month, join TPA and Rita Guess from Step Up and Do Something! for a close look at nonviolence and how it works.

The Third Harmony explores the important role that nonviolence plays in the wider struggle to develop a “new story” of human nature. Contrary to the “old story”, scarcity, competition and violence are not inevitable. Rather the universe is conscious and purposeful; we are spiritual beings, and cooperation and collaboration are our natural way of interacting.

The film points out what each of us can do to facilitate the fulfillment of Mahatma Gandhi’s promise that nonviolence could “oversweep the world” and allow us each to find personal fulfillment in the process.

We are the Radical Monarchs – Film and conversation – Fourth Friday/Films of Vision and Hope

Film and discussion
Friday October 23, 7pm-9:30pm
RSVP to be able to join the Zoom gathering

How do you get engaged, empowered women who can fight for social justice? Start when they’re girls.

radical monarchs

‘We Are The Radical Monarchs’ profiles an extraordinary organization based in Oakland that transforms the Girl Scouts model into an force for social awareness and action for girls of color. The film documents the journey of the group as they earn badges for completing units including being an LGBTQ+ ally, preserving the environment, and disability justice. The group was started by two, fierce, queer women of color, Anayvette Martinez and Marilyn Hollinquest, as a way to address and center her daughter’s experience as a young brown girl. Their work is anchored in the belief that adolescent girls of color need dedicated spaces and that the foundation for this innovative work must also be rooted in fierce inter-dependent sisterhood, self-love, and hope.

The film follows the first troop of Radical Monarchs for over three years, until they graduate, and documents the Co-Founders struggle to respond to the needs of communities across the US and grow the organization after the viral explosion of interest in the troop’s mission to create and inspire a new generation of social justice activists.
See the trailer…

This week Fourth Friday: John Lewis – Get in the Way

Film and discussion
This Friday 9/25, 7pm-9:30pm
RSVP to be able to join the Zoom gathering

Good news! Our very first Virtual Fourth Friday/Films of Vision and Hope screening is this Friday. We are very excited to partner with Rita Guess from Step Up and Do Something to present John Lewis: Get In The Way.

Follow the courageous journey of John Lewis, the civil rights hero, congressional leader, and human rights champion whose unwavering fight for justice spanned the past 57 years. The son of sharecroppers, Lewis grew up in the segregated South and rose from Alabama’s Black Belt to the corridors of power on Capitol Hill. His humble origins have forever linked him to those whose voices often go unheard.
See the trailer…

Please RSVP to Victoria Armigovarmigo@earthlink.net so we know to let you into the Zoom session.

To join: 

Meeting ID: 820 6879 1085
One tap mobile
+16699006833,,82068791085# US (San Jose)

All Hands on Deck for COVID Response

It’s a time of extraordinary need in our local community. Everyone’s life has been turned upside down by COVID but none more so than undocumented families who have lost work in construction, restaurants, landscaping, child care, and maintenance. These families face enormous struggles in the best of times, but now the need is much greater, especially because they can’t get unemployment benefits or stimulus checks.

As part of my work with the Kafenia Peace Collective, I helped surveyed undocumented families in our network about their needs. We learned that the overwhelming need is for rent assistance. The statewide moratorium on evictions provides a little breathing room, but that’s all. Back rent will still be due once the moratorium is over.

To pitch in and help, Kafenia is raising money with partners Live in Peace and Dreamers Roadmap in East Palo Alto. In our first round of fundraising, we were able to help a dozen families meet their rent requirements for April.

The need is much too great to be solved by any one person or organization, but it’s very rewarding to be taking action and helping ease the pain for real families in our community.

You too can help out and be part of the COVID solution, even as you shelter in place.

  • Look at the practical suggestions in this Palo Alto Weekly column that I co-authored with others on the Kafenia team.
  • Help out financially if you can. Go to the Live in Peace website. After adding your credit card information, select ‘Kafenia’ under Additional Information.
  • Help with COVID response. If you’d like to roll up your sleeves and help out with the COVID effort, please send me an email (barbaraweinstien2@gmail.com). We especially have a need for Spanish speakers who can help with phone and text outreach.

—Barbara Weinstein

check recipients

Let Them Eat Dirt – March Fourth Friday/Films of Vison and Hope

Film and conversation
Friday, March 27, 7:30-9:30 pm.
Fireside Room, Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, 505 E. Charleston, Palo Alto
FREE, donations appreciated

Let Them Eat Dirt: The Hunt for Our Kids’ Missing Microbes

Learn about how good health just might begin with kids playing in the dirt.

Allergies, obesity, asthma, diabetes, auto-immune and intestinal disorders are all on the rise, with the incidence of some diseases doubling every ten years. New research points to changes in the ecosystem of microbes that live on and inside every one of us — our microbiomes — as a major cause. But how could one’s gut microbes increase the odds of developing conditions as radically different as asthma and diabetes?

Based on the book by B. Brett Finlay, Ph.D. and Marie-Claire Arrieta, Ph.D., Let Them Eat Dirt features families, doctors, and researchers who are sleuthing out what’s harming our microbes — and what we can do to reverse this dangerous trend.
See the trailer…

Let them eat dirt


Once Was Water – Feb Fourth Friday/Films of Vision and Hope

Film and conversation
Friday, February 28, 7:30-9:30 pm.
Fireside Room, Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, 505 E. Charleston, Palo Alto
FREE, donations appreciated
After the film, Peter Drekmeier (water activist and former Palo Alto mayor) will lead a conversation about local water policy.

once was water film

About the film: Las Vegas, in the middle of the Mojave Desert, is the driest city in America, yet it leads the United States in sustainable water conservation. The efforts of Las Vegas, in its search for sustainability, have produced creative solutions (technological, political, and financial) and provide an interesting case study for cities that want to create their own sustainable water system.

The film follows the story of Patricia Mulroy, the controversial founder of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, whose leadership is shaping Colorado River politics. She’s espoused conservation and pioneered a list of progressive urban water programs, but also bristled at any suggestions that Las Vegas’ growth should be limited.

Everything to do with Las Vegas’s water supply and disposal is watched, measured and checked. 40% of the water is recycled for indoor use. Every drop is monitored acoustically to detect possible leaks within 6,500 miles of pipes. Southern Nevada’s conservation efforts have also generated a keen public awareness and spawned hands-on programs in the public schools to teach about food-growing and water use in the desert.

See the trailer…



A Bold Peace – January Fourth Friday/Films of Vision and Hope

Friday, January 24 7:30-9:30 pm.
Fireside Room, Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, 505 E. Charleston, Palo Alto
FREE, donations appreciated

With the threat looming of the U.S. getting involved in yet another devastating war, Films of Vision and Hope will take a look at a remarkable alternative.

In 1948, Costa Rica dismantled its military establishment and intentionally cultivated security relationships with other nations through treaties, international laws, and international organizations. Free of the burden of military spending, they used the financial savings to invest in their people, creating strong public institutions including public higher education and universal health care. In short, Costa Ricans created a society committed to peace, solidarity, and international law. They have survived with safety and relative prosperity for nearly 70 years without a standing army.

‘A Bold Peace’ details the events that shook the country to its foundations, culminating in the 1948 civil war and the decision to abolish the military. Over the decades, the Costa Rican model has survived several serious crises, but the current threats may be the most formidable of all.

See the trailer…

a bold peace film

Transition Holiday Potluck Dec 20

holiday banner1


December 20, 7-9pm
Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto
505 E. Charleston, Palo Alto

Come greet the holidays at the Transition Palo Alto Holiday Potluck Dec 20! Let’s hang out, enjoy good food and connect with each other.

We can recall the accomplishments, joys, and sorrows of the year, and look ahead to next year — what each of us wants to do make a difference. And you’ll hear about three TPA projects you can be a part or champion on your own.

All you need to do is:

Bring food, drink, or both to share — along with the story of the food. Did you grow or forage any of the ingredients? Is it a traditional dish, a family recipe, or your own creation? Did you shop your kitchen for ingredients or go to the farmer’s market? 

Think about a project you’d like to do next year. Creating a saner, more resilient community means all hands on deck.  What’s your plan for next year?

See you on the 20th!