Image by Hakon-Grimstad via Unsplash

๐ŸŒฑ Influencing Culture Builds Permissions for Change

Part III: Building sustainable activism against unhealthy systems

Sam Chavez
Sam Chavez

Table of Contents

๐Ÿค“ Bite-Sized Knurd: Our new mission reflects how shifting culture opens the door to lasting social change. Storytelling is a key component.

In Case You Missed It: Getting in the Dirt with Roots Change

817 Influencing Culture Builds Permission for Change

When I rebranded this newsletter to Roots of Change, I knew that the name was sticky. I love Knurdology (Iโ€™m still a huge nerd after all!), but as a company name, it didnโ€™t tell people what my work is really about.

In that vein, I also made a big decision to change our mission statement to best reflect our work. I wanted to be bolder in how I communicate. If not now, then when?

Our new mission: At Roots of Change, our mission is to use storytelling to build human connections that lead to lasting social change.

We believe that social change comes from uprooting the unhealthy soil of our past and cultivating new soil that will allow all of us to grow in healthy, sustainable, and equitable ways.

Storytelling is our tool.

Storytelling deepens human connection, which allows cultures to become more empathetic and open to change. Cultural change opens the door for lasting social change.

Weโ€™re here to help you tell stories.

To tell the stories that matter.

Saying the Things

I recognize that using the words โ€˜white supremacist capitalist patriarchyโ€™ will make some people feel uncomfortable. You might be itching for the unsubscribe button. Or maybe you already unsubscribed last week! I understand that this isnโ€™t going to be for everyone. And that is intentional.

Not to be exclusive, but to be inclusive. The rising threats that we face (climate, inequality, authoritarianism, etc.) will require a multi-racial coalition to succeed. This requires intentionality in what we are fighting against (i.e. saying the things), but most importantly what we are fighting for.

Culture Shifts Society

Imagination is a key pillar of my activism because we must imagine the world that we want for it to become true. Imagination is a revolution.

Storytelling and imagination allow us to see the world as it can be, instead of resigning ourselves to what is.

There are many people in the country who do not think any of this is possible. The constant cynicism that the GOP and mainstream media push can be overwhelming. Thatโ€™s where collective cultural change can help us push back against the backlash (death rattle?).

We need deeper cultural change to make it easier to transition to a new future. Without shifting culture, progressive actions will not have lasting impacts.

We can do that through storytelling. Itโ€™s how we shift the narrative, then the culture. Humans are social and visual creatures. Our brains are most likely to understand complex concepts more easily through storytelling.

As Audre Lordeโ€™s famous quote puts it,

โ€œThe master's tools will never dismantle the master's house."

We cannot reach an equitable society with the old ways. We must create new traditions, languages, and practices if we are to create a new world. This work is both personal and collective. Itโ€™s up to each of us to shift our mindsets into the world that we want.

Weโ€™ve had a busy summer! Check out some of our latest work and tools to help your advocacy & activism.

  • We released an Email Planning Toolkit with a draft email library, an email strategy template, a reporting dashboard, review & approval process, & exec summary. Get the email planner for free!
  • Told my story publicly for the first time and loved it!
  • Hosted an email training, Whatโ€™s your Userโ€™s Journey?, with my friend!
  • Co-hosted a fundraiser for one of the most dynamic candidates Iโ€™ve had the pleasure of meeting who also happens to be a trans woman, Danica Roem.

Wrote about the GOPโ€™s weird obsessions with children.

Why are Classrooms the Latest Culture Wars Arena?

๐Ÿ—ผ๐Ÿ—ž: Newsletter๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ‘งโ€๐Ÿ‘ฆ for activists & heart-first humans ๐ŸŒฑ๐ŸŒฑโค๏ธโ€๐Ÿ”ฅ Our Inner Growth๐ŸŒฑ๐Ÿคนโ€โ™€๏ธ Social & Cultural

Sam Chavez

Sam is a writer, strategist, and curious human. She founded the roots of change agency in 2020. Sam is a queer, white, LatinX activist whoโ€™s passionate about a livable planet & equitable societies.


Navigating heart-first activism & storytelling. We explore the ๐ŸŒฑ roots of our world to support communicators, organizations, and activists ๐Ÿฅต to avoid burnout and ๐Ÿ“š tell empathetic stories that cultivate connections that ๐ŸŒ empower โœŠ๐Ÿฝ social change.

Learn more about the Roots of Change Agency.