Currently, the collective is composed of 4 people, who originally came together in 2019 with an idea of a festival for leftist grassroots activists in the Baltics. The team solidified after the organisation of Festival Y?! in 2020. We mostly work on administering the participatory fund, facilitating meetings between the members, fundraising for the network and – when possible and needed – organising capacity building opportunities, such as workshops and trainings.
Meet the team:
Proud plant parent and excel enthusiast, currently based in Latvia. Loves to eat potatoes, collect rocks and wants more queer joy in this world.
potato-enthusiast from latvia, currently based in copenhagen, denmark. enjoys doodling plants and long stretches of silence, however not opposed to the revolution getting a little bit loud.
Currently enjoying life in Berlin, although it took some time to get here from Lithuania through Glasgow and Amsterdam. Would like some more time to chill, travel, and get a new tattoo.
Based in Vilnius and eagerly researching issues of climate, urban commons and gender. Spending time in nature, playing with the cat and dinners with friends are always the things to go for in her free time.
The team works in a horizontal structure and anyone is welcome to join. In the past we had multiple amazing volunteers, so if these activities sound like something you would be excited about, please reach out!
Facilitation team (FT) is a recent addition to the Solidarity Network Y?! structure, introduced in 2022. This team is currently composed of 2 people. They are volunteers from the member groups, who provide additional input and help steer the network. Facilitation Team organise release of participatory fund, makes decisions on distribution of emergency funding, enrolls new groups, as well as strategises on the overall direction of the network. Its overall purpose is to distribute decision-making across the network evenly.
As of the beginning of 2023, around 15 member groups and individual activists from across the Baltics take part in the network, whether through applying for and distributing funding, or non-funding related engagement. Member groups are part of shaping the network as much as Collective Y?! and Facilitation Team – with a mandate to organize, facilitate meetings and make decisions collectively on issues concerning the network. Network is open for anybody from the Baltics, although we take the screening process seriously. We are a leftist network and we are passionate about our values, therefore everybody who wants to join the network and participate in the Participatory Fund, as well as other network activities, need to first have an informal talk with the facilitation and collective Y?! Teams.
Participatory Fund (PF)
Our participatory fund processes were inspired by FundAction and Marius Jacob Foundation. Solidarity Network Y?! Participatory Fund currently is run by Facilitation Team and Collective Y?!. FT designs and release PF calls and coordinates the distribution and reporting processes. When a PF call is released, all network groups can apply with their project ideas and required budget. After the deadline, participants gather together online, introduce and discuss each others’ project proposals. Following, they distribute the money amongst each other – the decision-making process is designed and facilitated by FT, but the general principle is that all participants need to reach a general agreement on how the funds are distributed.
Next to the Participatory Fund, the network runs Emergency Fund, which is open all year round and is available for non-network members as well. Whenever activist groups or individuals from the Baltics (who also operate guided by the same values as us) face a financial emergency, they can approach us with their request. Following, Collective Y?! and the Facilitation Team checks the application and if it fits the criteria, the money is transferred.
Besides funding, Solidarity Network Y?! organize learning opportunities on a regular basis. According to the wishes of network members, we find facilitators who deliver workshops on relevant topics. When possible we gather the movements in the Baltics together face-to-face with the long-term goal of building stronger ties between activists and groups in the region. The next Baltics-wide Festival Y?! is foreseen for 2024.