The CMC exists to act as a showcase for those engaged in community-based grassroots media throughout the Northwest. We aim to create a space where socially conscious media-makers, journalists and artists can network and share their knowledge and skills with each other through informational and hands-on workshops. We also want use the gathering as an opportunity to directly connect media makers who care about making change with campaigns and organizations that are in need of media support. This is done through our strategy based sessions, which took a particular form in the 2014 gathering, and that will evolve as subsequent conferences take place.
Our goal is that this convergence becomes an annual event for socially engaged media makers throughout the region to share their talents and continue coordinating efforts on a regional level. Eventually we would like the gathering to rotate between different cities in the region, to give organizers in each locality a chance to get practice doing this sort of work, and to put their own spin on the event. We hope that after each conference a few tangible projects will emerge from the strategy sessions that participants can agree to continue collaboration moving forward from the conference.
This convergence is the evolution of several past projects located in our region that have worked to connect grassroots media makers with ongoing political organizing. In some ways the CMC is an evolution of a project called the Portland Grassroots Media Camp, which for two summers in 2007 and 2008 connected local media makers with community organizers interested in learning media skills through a series of roughly 80 workshops offered by donation or free of charge, with the intention that by connecting organizers with the skills they need it would strengthen the organizations and movements those organizers work with.