Becoming Justice

by | Apr 22, 2021 | ShiftHappens

Over the last year, much of America and the world waited with heavy hearts for the outcome of the case against Derek Chauvin. 

This wasn’t just a fight for George Floyd. This wasn’t just a fight against Derek Chauvin. This was a fight for the soul of a nation, a fight for humanity, and a fight for justice. 

This week, the American legal system finally delivered accountability for this grievous murder. Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all counts.  Yet, only a few hours after the Chauvin verdict another young Black person was shot dead by the police.

This is the problem with accountability: it is retrospective, not preventative, coming only after the loss of another precious, irreplaceable life. Perhaps even more importantly, accountability is not restorative. George Floyd’s young daughter will still live a life without her father, irrespective of what the jury decided, just as Ma’Khia Bryant’s mother will never again hold her child. 

I’ve been thinking this week, like so many others, can we now move from accountability to true justice? Is our duty only to build and support the legal system and other institutions, making them more fair? Or is there a personal duty that each of us have to live the embodied virtue of justice in our everyday lives? 

If I consider what is needed to prevent another murder such as George Floyd’s, I am not sure the problem is solely an institutional one. Part of it must be personal. What I see fundamentally missing in these violent and traumatic events is relationship, loving personal concern, and a lack of understanding of our interdependence. 

Bureaucracies cannot love. They have no soul, heart, or conscience. Only individuals have those things. The “society” implied in “social” justice is made of a collective of individuals. The collective shapes the individual, but so too does the individual shape the collective. Perhaps the fight for justice is a fight with ourselves, one that starts within our own hearts; and “the work” to be done is the work of manifesting justice in our own thoughts, words and actions. 

At The Pollination Project, here is what we will do: we will continue uplifting individual action, working with people within their own communities to understand where they see just solutions. We will continue to invest in their loving concern for their neighbors, knowing this builds the capacity for compassion that exists there. And as individuals, we will work to better understand ourselves, remembering Frankl’s idea that happiness cannot be pursued, but is something that ensues. 

Perhaps justice is the same, and the answer is not to seek justice but to become justice.


It's Volunteer Month! 🌟 🌟 🌟 Today we celebrate our grant advisors working on Economic Development focus area.

By meticulously selecting projects for our seed grants, they're not just funding ideas—they're empowering communities and sparking transformative change. 

Join us in celebrating their invaluable efforts and the positive impact they're creating together!

🔸 Eric Anorrey (Ghana)
🔸 Mariam Nakiryowa (Uganda)
🔸 Jean-Marie Zihalirwa (DRC)
🔸 Emily Logiron Asekon (Kenya)
🔸 Georgia Bernbaum (USA) 
🔸 Herve Tsoala Kuete (Cameroon)
🔸 Jackson Bizimungu (Rwanda)
🔸 Okumu Dickson (Uganda)
🔸 Samuel Litunya (Kenya)


#volunteermonth #volunteer #heartivism #economicdevelopment #change #empoweringcommunities
The Green Earth Initiative (#Cameroon) is a project dedicated to educating and empowering students about climate change, sustainable development, and environmental challenges, that has received a seed grant from The Pollination Project in 2023. With a focus on fostering environmental protection and conservation, the initiative establishes Eco-clubs and Environment Clubs in schools, providing students with the tools to learn, engage, and take action in their communities.

Since receiving the grant from TPP, the Green Earth Initiative has expanded its reach, now encompassing 9 additional schools across two regions/cities, surpassing its initial goal of 5. 
This expansion was made possible by the overwhelming interest from school authorities and the growing number of volunteers and team members.

Through the support of TPP and other partners, the project's environmental education programs, awareness campaigns, and initiatives have impacted over 8000 students in two cities of Cameroon. Additionally, the initiative has planted over 600 trees, launched 5 Environment/Eco Clubs, and distributed over 150 adapted waste bins produced from recycled plastics, contributing to proper waste management practices.

The seed grant from The Pollination Project has been instrumental in catalyzing the growth and success of the Green Earth Initiative, enabling it to make a tangible difference in the lives of students and communities, while fostering a culture of environmental stewardship and sustainability. 

#environmentprotection #seedgrant #heartivism #environmentaleducation
It's Volunteer's Month!!! 🌟 Celebrating our family of Grant Advisors 🌟

With 80 grant advisors, all experts in their respective fields and many of them former grantees, The Pollination Project is powered by a wealth of knowledge and experience. Their service is not only precious but also essential, as they bring unique insights and understanding to the application process, ensuring that resources are allocated where they can have the greatest impact. 

🎉 Today we celebrate our incredible grant advisors in the HEALTH & WHOLENESS focus area! 

🔸 Ben Kilama (Uganda) 
🔸 Kosa Jimmy (Uganda) 
🔸 Marina Haque (USA) 
🔸 John Ebong (Nigeria) 
🔸 Nzayisenga Emmanuel (Canada)
🔸 Rodger Mwanza (Zambia) 
🔸 Emmanuel Dushimimana (Rwanda) 
🔸 Nelly Hellen Onditi (Kenya) 
🔸 Daniel Ayodele Femi (Nigeria) 
🔸 Christopher Nwafor (South Africa)

Our heartfelt gratitude to these dedicated individuals for their invaluable contributions 🙏

@jim.kosa.5 @manud05 @duemmanuel @nelly.hellen1 @daniel_ayodele_femi 

#health #wholeness #grantmaking #grantadvisor #volunteermonth #volunteers #grants #heartivism #volunteersweek #nigeria #southafrica #uganda #rwanda #zambia #canada