Highlander serves as a catalyst for grassroots organizing and movement building in Appalachia and the U.S. South. Through popular education, participatory research, and cultural work, we help to create spaces — at Highlander and in local communities — where people gain knowledge, hope and courage, expanding their ideas of what is possible.
Highlander is a place where leaders, networks, and movement strands come together to interact, build friendships, craft joint strategy and develop the tools and mechanisms needed to advance a multi-racial, inter-generational movement for social and economic justice in our region. Highlander is also a source of political continuity, across both geography and history, linking current movement efforts to movements across the globe and to the history of movements across multiple generations. Highlander’s work – convening workshops; scouting for emerging leadership and political action; ‘relationship-building’; connecting across difference; documentation; cultural engagement – marks, shapes and forms the trajectory of political action by helping to create a common understanding of the work to be done by supporting and connecting actual and potential doers of that work.