The heart and soul of the work of the Collaborative happens at our Summits. These gatherings of roughly 80 participants from around the country aren't regular conferences of workshops and panels, but an opportunity for working organizers to come together and increase our capacity to effect change together. The three and a half day meetings are composed of facilitated large and small group discussions aimed at sharing stories; models and tools; mapping the landscape of our movement; addressing power dynamics and barriers to collaboration; identifying common language, visions and values; and sparking new collaborative projects, with time for one-on-one networking and cultural sharing. Rather than attempting to create unified strategic plans, our Summits focus on building concrete skills for working together across differences—in terms of issues, tactics, identities—to strengthen our movement to end Extreme Extraction. This approach is rooted in the belief that changes in the daily practice of working organizers, rather than ambitious national agendas disconnected from the grassroots, are the keys to a more unified and effective movement.
The E3C holds Summits every 9 months in different regions of the country to spread out the travel burden. Applications to attend generally open 2-3 months prior to the date of the Summit. We strive to have the most balanced and diverse group of participants possible for each Summit, while still keeping the total number of participants low enough that we can have full group discussions. Unfortunately, this means we cannot accept all applications. Priority is given to grassroots, front-line organizers, but we are also inclusive of representatives from larger organizations, networks and environmental funders. We encourage groups that do similar work and have close relationships to discuss amongst themselves who will represent their sector at a Summit and commit to a robust input and reportback process, so that organizers that are unable to attend can still be part of the conversation. The Summits have a sliding scale registration fee and travel scholarships are available to make them as accessible as possible to groups with limited financial resources.
We intentionally limit the size of our gatherings to create a more intimate environment that supports deeper relationship and trust building. We prioritize participation based on the following criteria.
Over 400 organizers representing over 200 different organizations from over 40 states, Canada, Puerto Rico, Belarus and Washington, D.C. have attended our first 8 Summits.