RISC (Richmonders Involved to Strengthen Our Communities) is an organization made up of congregations from throughout Richmond, Henrico and Chesterfield.  Founded in 2002 (Bon Air Presbyterian being one of the founders), we use the power of large number of organized people to solve critical community problems.  We are not a direct service provider, rather we are a grass-roots, direct action, multi-issue organization.

Dr. Martin Luther King describes best in his letter from a Birmingham Jail the premise for which RISC was founded and works today:

Actually, we who engaged in nonviolent direct action are not the creators of tension. We merely bring to the surface the hidden tension that is already alive. We bring it out in the open, where it can be seen and dealt with. Like a boil that can never be cured so long as it is covered up but must be opened with all its ugliness to the natural medicines of light and air, injustice must be exposed, with all the tension its exposure creates, to the light of human conscience and the air of national opinion before it can be cured.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

25,000 households in Richmond are without an affordable safe decent place to live, more families live in out-moded mobile homes than reside in public housing and countless families are grieving for those killed needlessly by gun violence. These are tense issues. We did not create them, rather we are bringing the issues into the open to expose them.  Using Dr. King’s same tactics of direct action, we will not rest until we have cured these terrible injustices.

During the RISC Action year between the start of the new year and our Nehemiah Action, there have been quite a few issue-related meetings. And while many of our Network Members commit to the four big Assemblies, congregation-level gatherings, and nothing more, some of our Network Members are very much eager and willing to participate in these smaller issue-related meetings (see http://www.riscrichmond.org/ calendar for more details).

Key meetings for RISC engagement on the calendar over this season of active action, include:

  • Monday, October 30, 2023 – 7:00 PM (Second Baptist South), Community Problems Assembly
  • Thursday, November 16, 2023 – 7:00 PM (BAPC Fellowship Hall), Research to Action Kick-Off
  • Wednesday, February 21, 2024 – 7:00 PM—BAPC Justice Ministry Network Meeting (at BAPC after Wed night supper)
  • Tuesday, February 27, 2024 – 7:00 PM (location TBD) – Rally for Clergy, Team Leaders and Network Members
  • Tuesday, March 19, 2024 – 6:30 PM St. Paul’s Baptist Church – The Great Nehemiah Action Assembly
  • Monday, June 3, 2024 – 6:30 PM (location TBD) – Celebration!

All meetings will be in person with regularly scheduled zoom connections throughout the year. Contact Barbara Jacocks (barbjacocks@gmail.com) with questions.

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