Tag Archives: Reciprocity

Seedcast: Reciprocity and Rematriation at Alma

by Lisa Fruichantie

Since 2015, Alma Mater has been a gathering place for the Tacoma community, housing restaurants, music and event spaces, coworking space, a recording studio, and more. Last year, when co-founder Jason Heminger stepped down as executive director, I was both humbled and honored to step up and fill the role. Yes, we were in a pandemic that had shut down our two popular restaurants, our gallery, coworking space, concert venue, recording studio, and our offices. And yes, the experience was challenging for every restaurant and public space in Washington State and around the world. However, we couldn’t just close our doors and wait the virus out. 

Instead, the Alma Mater team decided to shift focus and utilize our physical space in being a strong community partner in the Tacoma area food relief and social justice movements. We partnered with Beacon Youth Center, Rainbow Center, Tacoma Mutual Aid Collective, The People’s Assembly, LegallyBLACK, and many more community havens. The entwined relationship between Alma Mater and the community it resides in is what first attracted me to be part of the organization, so it made sense to shift our focus to meeting the community’s needs. I saw this as our mission and a reflection of our team’s collective values. 

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