A crew of 60+ local creatives have come together on rEVOLUTION Cincy, a project designed to encourage citizens to voice their feelings on community issues - then take positive action and find ways to engage.
The music video, written, directed and produced by Liz Wu of Turtle and the Stone Productions, in collaboration with JP Leong and Yemi Oyediran of Afrochine (film and sound design), features many local musicians, dancers and artists. The message: “Be the Change You Wish to See.”
The chorus of the song is echoed on the website, which suggests four easy ways one can vote beyond the November ballot: vote with your dollar, vote with your time, vote with your actions, vote with your mind. Voting with your dollar relates to supporting independent businesses and being aware of the footprint of one’s purchases. Voting with your time relates to volunteering. Voting with your actions relates to one’s day-to-day activities, which can add up to make an impact, such as recycling, using public transit, etc. Voting with your mind relates to educating oneself so as to make informed decisions.
The website also features a poll where visitors can vote on the top issues in their neighborhood, and see a real-time graph of responses for the designated neighborhood as well as the city as a whole.
rEVOLUTION Cincy is inspired by the saying, "Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in." In this historic election year, the project’s message is that voting is of utmost importance - and there are many ways that we can cast our votes on a daily basis for the community we would like to create.
rEVOLUTION Cincy is a movement to encourage citizens to think about the issues that are important to them, to communicate those issues, and then to take personal action. The project is designed to start conversation about what we as residents of Greater Cincinnati’s various neighborhoods truly value - and what we wish could be improved. However, the real conversation begins when we discuss what we can actually DO about it - and then take action!
Wu, a local activist and community organizer who created #Kindflash, a grassroots volunteer group that performs “flash mobs of kind acts,” shares her inspiration for the project. “Every time you turn on the news or log onto social media, you can see that our communities are polarized. There is one thing everyone seems to have in common, though - everyone is frustrated. Yet, everyone wants the same things - good jobs, a high quality of life, safe neighborhoods, opportunities for their children, and so forth. The rEVOLUTION Cincy website is designed to be a tool for local residents to share the issues that matter most to them, and to start dialogue about how we can come together as neighbors, on these things we all hold in common. However, it doesn’t stop there. The fastest way to have a direct impact is to implement change on a local level - any legislation that may pass takes months if not years to become fully incorporated.
rEVOLUTION Cincy challenges citizens to think beyond the issues that frustrate them, and empower themselves to find ways, however seemingly small, to address them. Tired of litter on your street? Get a broom. Worried about the prison to pipeline trend? Mentor a student. Feel overwhelmed by the ceaseless stream of bad news? Spend time with someone who needs you. When you act as an individual, you can see an immediate impact - when this is multiplied across groups of people, the impact can be exponential. By all means, please vote this November! But please also remember to vote daily with what you do - this is where you have the opportunity to make a huge and consistent impact.