November 12, 2009
This letter is to inform you that PODER is undergoing a tremendous funding crisis! For eighteen years PODER has worked to protect the health of the most vulnerable population, our children and the elderly. PODER continues to empower East Austin residents to advocate for a clean, safe and healthy environment. At this time we are respectfully requesting your help to keep PODER’s doors open by making your tax deductible donation by visiting our website: poder-texas.org and click on the PayPal Donate Button or mail your donation to PODER, P.O. Box 6237, Austin, TX, 78762.
PODER, the only environmental justice organization based in Austin, Texas, led the successful relocation of 6 major oil companies (Tank Farm) emitting benzene as well as BFI, a multinational waste management company, who created a mini-landfill of pests; the shutdown of the Holly Power Plant, impacting the health of the community; historic and successful rollback zoning of over 600 properties zoned industrial and commercial in a residential area in East Austin; Successful massive property tax protests of over 300 properties with savings of taxes for poor African and Mexican Americans, and immigrant communities.
PODER created the Young Scholars for Justice Leadership Development Program for the next generation of community organizers. The Young Scholars for Justice have a proven track record of successfully changing procedures and polices within the city of Austin Parks & Recreation Centers such as” gender equity in employment” and scholarships for activities; successful organizing of several youth forums addressing youth employment, juvenile justice issues within the school system and police brutality.
PODER has worked to create a balance in our natural environment by working to protect the 366 acres of Roy Guerrero Colorado River Park. PODER created the Keepers of the Roy Guerrero Colorado River Park which has planted trees and wildflowers, gives nature tours of the site, and host the Festival de las Plantas, a celebration of culture and spirit of people and plants. PODER is also the caretaker of the Oak Springs Water Quality Preserve. The preserve provides nearly 6 acres of green space, large trees, hundreds of native species, and a natural freshwater spring. Saved from destruction by the community, this area represents another success in beautifying and protecting East Austin and providing a nature area for the community to enjoy.
In this period of global economic restructuring, there is a need for PODER to continue to redefine national and international goals with a broader vision, a vision which honors the sacredness of human life and the environment. Through your support you will join us in this vision.
Susana Almanza Erika Gonzalez Carmen Llanes Librado Almanza