Ruckus Updates

It Takes Roots Action Camp 2014


“It Takes Roots to Weather the Storm”
Nonviolent Direct Action Camp
August 29th – September 1st, 2014
Upstate New York

Applications due August 8th:

$25-$450 (Sliding scale; no one turned away for lack of funds)

This September marks a critical moment for our movement and for Climate Justice. With the convening of the global UN Summit to take place in NYC this September, we are called to increase our organizing and direct action capacity for Climate Justice. We know the real power and real solutions lie in the hands of communities, and not in the corporate board rooms to influence political leadership towards further climate catastrophe.

The Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) has challenged our movement to take bold action to confront the corporations causing the climate crisis and amplify community-led solutions under the banner “It takes roots to weather the storm“.

To support this call to action, The Ruckus Society will host a 4-day It Takes Roots Action Camp, from August 29th to September 1st in New York, designed to advance skill development and theory in nonviolent direct action strategy, planning, and tactics with an emphasis on creative, resilience based actions for Climate Justice. This camp is co-sponsored by Greenpeace and Rainforest Action Network.

With leadership of CJA, this camp will also explore the intersections of our struggles, and strengthen our strategies and power as a whole movement. We encourage you to bring your struggles and campaign issues to this camp, and apply with folks from your region or organization to maximize the opportunity to strategize about local actions.

The application deadline for the camp is August 8, 2014. Initial acceptances will be sent out by August 13. We will prioritize outreach to people in marginalized, underrepresented, and front-line communities. People of color, women, especially women of color, LGBTQ and gender nonconforming individuals, and those with limited financial resources are all highly encouraged to apply.

This will be a 4-day camp with travel days on either side. Applicants must be able to commit to attend the entire time.

There will be workshops on:

Nonviolent Direct Action Theory: get grounded in theory and inspired by examples about when and why we use NVDA in our work for climate justice, and how to make it the most effective.

Climate Justice:  explore what climate justice means and how it shows up in our organizing.

Arts in Action: learn how to make and use banners, props, puppets and a variety of other tools to produce effective high quality images, messages and stories for use in direct action, street theater, marches, protests, etc.

Climbing: get hands on experience with basic direct action climbing skills that meet high standards of safety and are also accessible and affordable. Learn to work comfortably and safely at height and develop a good sense of how a skill like climbing can be of great use in campaigns that utilize direct action.

Blockades: learn essential skills for occupying and holding space using technical tools and our bodies with a focus on developing skills that will be useful in broader activist communities.


Participants are encouraged to camp using their own gear. There will be a limited amount of camping gear available for those without personal gear. There will be running water, bathrooms, and showers on site. Staff will be on hand to offer help and advice for any first time or infrequent campers. There are some indoor accommodations available for those who would prefer not to, or are unable to camp.

We will work to support those with young children who want to attend camp by providing part-time child care. We will be happy to discuss details with accepted applicants to see if we can accommodate your family at camp.

We cannot allow dogs or other animal companions at this camp (service animals will be welcomed).

Food at camp will be vegan and vegetarian with a meat option at dinner. All meals will be nutritionally balanced and will fulfill any dietary needs.

The Ruckus Society has a 17-year track record of running successful action camps and thousands of activists have been trained through our programs. Anyone will tell you that nothing quite compares to Action Camp. Don’t miss this great opportunity to build the skills and capacity of your group!

Apply Today!

Please feel free to direct any questions or volunteer inquiries to