Drawing On Our Talents and Experiences: 10 Years of Moms Demand Action
I have been involved with Moms Demand Action since November 2018 when I was inspired to join the gun violence prevention movement after the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Seeing so many high school-aged children, children the same age as mine, who were shot and killed moved me to action.
In the years since I’ve become involved, I appreciate that we have focused efforts on daily gun violence and worked to center the impact of gun violence in Black and Brown communities. While mass shootings make the news, so many impacted neighborhoods are dealing with gun violence every day, and keeping our focus on that is critical to our growth as individuals and an organization.
I joined the Moms Demand Action group in Oakland, CA, and was inspired by so many other community partners that had been doing the work on the ground for many years. A leader told me about a partner organization that shared that one of the things they appreciated most about Moms Demand Action volunteers was that they were able to organize and mobilize on the legislative side to help them secure funding, and I still think this is one of our greatest strengths as an organization. I’m always proud to show up for and support community partners.
I’ve dedicated my career to communicating creative ideas through visuals, recognizing their unique ability to evoke emotions that words alone might miss. When I turned my focus to advocacy, I brought my storytelling experience to capturing moments with Moms Demand Action.
It all began with a simple drawing featuring a quote from Cory Booker during Gun Sense University 2021. His words, ‘Make your hope invincible,’ deeply inspired me, and when I shared it on social media with my Moms Demand Action friends, it resonated far beyond my expectations. So I kept going! In our work, there’s a profound sense of humanity, and I believe people appreciate seeing themselves reflected in the artwork. My illustrations embrace imperfection, just as we all do. It’s the shared passion and connection that allows us to see ourselves in the art. I appreciate that with Moms Demand Action, whatever your talents are, you can use and strengthen them here to further our mission of ending gun violence.
I remain inspired to keep working in the gun violence prevention movement by so many survivors of gun violence. I am reminded and renewed to keep going whenever their stories are shared.
And it certainly doesn’t hurt that the other volunteers are like family. I am still in touch with Oakland volunteers, and the first friends I made when I moved to my new town were members of the local group of Moms Demand Action! Having gone through an election cycle now, we are tight!
Volunteering with Moms Demand Action has given me hope: We do hard things and go through tough times, but we are together, ever moving forward for change.
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Volunteers like Jennifer have been making an impact in their communities for 10 years.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. WONDER Online Database, Underlying Cause of Death. A yearly average was developed using four years of the most recent available data: 2018 to 2021.