We live in an age of separation, where our lives are fragmented from one another’s and we are unfulfilled within ourselves. We’re told to go it alone, to commodify everything, to just do what we can, as the world and the environment fall apart around us. What is missing in our lives is the foundation of supportive community—which all humans need to survive. It is only through deliberately co-creating this community that we can transform the world into a more just, sustainable, and compassionate place.

As deliberate communities, we seek to build alternative institutions to the oppressive and separating ones that exist. These liberatory institutions—from networks of sharing to local sustainable food systems to social housing to solidarity networks—are our attempts to model the world that we want to live in. Mutual Aid started in central North Carolina a few years ago, and we now have multiple groups across the country. Here is a brief description of our model, followed by how you might start a group of your own.

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