Sweet Water Community Guild School: Focus On Our Daughters

Brydie Godsil Wines, crew foreman on massive metal roof project in New Orleans…January 26, 2019.

Nation’s only slate/tile/copper/masonry/carpentry woman restoration artist artisan who I hope plays a role in the 30 to 50 year Restoration Guild Experiment

Brydie’s family knew she had special gifts empowering her to advance the good cause of women in the trades…ennobling and well-paying work that can’t be outsourced or robotized.

More pics here.

Sweet Water Academy

I have always aspired to advance charismatic communities over charismatic individuals. But at this stage in history, we humans seem to better enter the story of a charismatic community with a preliminary focus on the key heavy lifter(s) of that emerging miracle. For us…Big Dog, Big Bang Emmanuel Pratt.

We began our partnership with conversations, in the theory realm, about the importance of Schumacher’s “Small is Beautiful,” Andre Gorz’s notions of radical reform, Grace Lee Boggs’ American ®Evolution, and Dr. ML King’s beloved community construction. In the domain of practice, we focused on the path breaking work of Will Allen and his Growing Power team, Sharon and Jerry Adams’ Walnut Way, and Josh Fraundorf and Steve Lindner’s Sweet Water Organics. We imagined Emmanuel’s doctoral candidacy in urban planning and architecture at Columbia University involving a paradigm shifting construction of a “living dissertation” with a theory/practice involvement with three models of urban transformation: (l) a community model, i.e. Growing Power; (2) a neighborhood model, i.e. Walnut Way; and (3) a market model, i.e. Sweet Water Organics(SWO).. In collaboration with Community Roofing & Restoration’s Josh Fraundorf, who provided the money and social network to launch SWO, we intended to distill the best of these three models into a hybrid enterprise we came to call “The Academy” among our associates, the Sweet Water Foundation(SWF), for the wider community.

Pratt To Growing Power

Emmanuel arrived at Growing Power in the Fall/Winter of 2008.

Community Roofing’s Josh Fraundorf believed in my collaboration with Big WIll and Emmanuel, and assumed near complete responsibility for the company I founded in 1975 and which paid my bills over the years. Pratt and I explored Milwaukee’s urban ag scene in the same big old Community truck that we later used to haul tens of thousands of pounds of food waste from a Big Box Pic and Save store later on.

And we set up “fluid offices” at a number of locations, including what we called The Project House at 325 E. Euclid, where Pratt stayed and worked in his Milwaukee travels from his Chicago and Columbia University base.

When I introduced him to Big Will Allen (I served on the GP Board 2005 to 2009) I said, “Will, I would like to introduce you to who will become the Lebron James of Urban Agriculture.” I had told Will in 2005 that I would be John Stockton to his Karl Malone.

Will was quickly impressed with Pratt’s spirit force, but also with his skills in photography, film, and “information architecture.”

Will would come to call Emmanuel “Webster,” by virtue of his ability to harness the power of the internet, including creating WIl’s first power point.

“Webster” quickly became one of WIll’s key collaborators, most notably helping Will navigate the world of White House Farmer through Pratt’s relationship with Obama’s chef Sam Katz. Will was consulting with Emmanuel right up to the 15 minutes prior to entering the White House to meet the First Lady.

If you would like to sneak a peak at the images supporting my memory of this adventure, go to Professor Pratt’s:

Labor Power For the Sweet Water Big Bang

Growing Social and Cultural Capital

Living Dissertation Milwaukee Chapter

Pratt Dissertation II

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Sweet Water World of Wood At 3 Major Chicago Museums, Winter 2019

Sweet Water World of Wood

We can connect our visions of building and design experiments with young and old mentors/learners at a workshop in Chicago, Milwaukee, Mukwonago, and Reedsburg sometime before 2022, with our apprentices showing their work at the Calatrava…why not?
We have a grant from the Community Guild to pay for transportation to Chicago. Workshop costs to be bartered.

U of Chicago Smart Museum Chicago

Chicago Museum of Modern Art

Hyde Park Art Center

A Timber Framed Barn For Milwaukee?

Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival @ The Commons!

Sweet Water Foundation is excited to host the Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival’s Neighborhood Tour on Friday, January 18 at 1:30 pm.

Join us to watch international puppeteers, Poncili Creación and Gaspare Nasuto, bring stories to life in the Thought Barn.

Tickets are FREE, but registration is requested. Space is limited.

Click Here To Register

Intersectional Identity Construction


My granddaughters have shared important insights regarding our identity construction at the intersection of class, race, gender, neighborhood, family, and other aspects of our complex selves. I think this law professor may be a major originator of this useful concept. I hope my children and friends someday meet her if she visits Milwaukee Chicago Sweet Water Academy conference on Intersectionality over the next few years.

Kimberlé Williams Krenshaw

Construction, Design,and Growing Workshops at Norris Academy

Hopes that city, rural, and periurban citizen learners, young and old, will harvest the Norris Academy Castle’s space and turn it into a collaboration place.

Dave Mangin’s Paean To Wisconsin

Wisconsin is one of the richest locations in the world.

We are about halfway between the Equator and the North Pole, so we enjoy a bountiful growing season and a period of dormancy that allows a bank account of organics to accumulate in our soils.

We are located at the northern limits of the southern hardwood forests, the southern border of the northern conifers, the western edge of the eastern forests, and the eastern frontier of the Central Plains. As a result, we enjoy diverse fauna that accompany these ecotypes.

The glaciers that last receded about 13000 years ago left us with abundant topsoil and prime agricultural land.

Our forest resources maintain output and were expansive enough to build the city of Chicago twice, before and again after the great fire.

Our 15000 lakes serve as sources of food, water, sport, habitat, and livelihood.

Our rivers provide lush riparian corridors and connect us with trade routes to to both the East and Gulf Coasts.

Our mineral resources have been traded by Native Americans as far as Mexico, and continue to be sources of industry and controversy.

We sit on the shores of 1/5 of the world’s freshwater, held within the Great Lakes.

No resources are out of reach. Diverse ecotypes and landscapes are all within reach via bicycle.
We are centrally located in the lower 48, so we make a good location for distribution hubs.

For the human enterprises:

Our plains, hills, barrens, river valleys, lakes, and shorelines make for diverse landscapes, each with its own charm, and for a diversified economy with foundations in tourism, logging, agriculture, mining, fisheries, art, and trade.

Our long winters require stores of food, fuel, sturdy, well designed structures, and hearty souls. We have in our genes strong senses of independence, creativity, hard work, and hard play.

We have so far been buffered by some of the most severe effects of global warming. Our coastlines won’t flood. Warmer temps will not destroy us. More severe weather events can be buffered by water storage and planned resiliency.

We are buffered from economic peaks and valleys of the nation as a whole. We are no silicone valley, but our ingenuity, work ethic, and talent will always be in demand.

We tend to be politically centrist which makes us crucial in the political landscape. As we prove ourselves with Earth saving strategies and resilient communities and our grass roots movements demand integrity and genuine leadership from those in office, the rest of the nation will take notice.

Jesse Blom Provides Essays Re Aquaponics for STEM Education

“Implementation of Aquaponics in Education: An Assessment of Challenges, Solutions and Success”

“Managing Expectations for Aquaponics in the Classroom: Enhancing Academic Learning and Teaching an Appreciation for Aquatic Resources”


“Fish in the Classroom: A Survey of the Use of Aquaponics in Education”


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The World of Wood: The Sweet Water Way

Table of Contents

l. Visions

Our Daughters Working In The SWF World of Wood

2. Theories

3. Experiments

4. Feedback Loops

5. Partnerships

Conveyor of Food for We People

Intersectional Self Reliance Skills Development

Container for Building Materials

For Soups of Goodness

Chairs & Decks for South Side’s Backstreet Harvard

Tables, Chairs and Shelving for Thought Barns

For First Suppers

Bringing Comfort To Elder Talk and Youth Noosphere Exploration

For Use, Exhibitions, and Performances Beyond Perry: U of Chicago’s Smart Museum

Teachers Are Students, Students Are Teachers at The Thought Barn

21st Century Sweet Water Community Wood Apprentices Follow Safety Rules!

Multi Using My Bench of 1,000 Names

The World of Wood is part of a series Emmanuel Pratt inspired called

Wood Water Woke

To be continued

Indispensable prop and tool for your various performance arts and enterprise experiments

Making them and using them is good for your mental and physical health

Teaches Us How To Drill and Fasten

Fits In A Car

Strong and Comfortable

Workbench and play bench

Infinite do-it-yourself refinements

You can teach your friends to make them

Might even make and sell them to your family and friends for some pocket money or more

We’ll help

Somos una universidad, granja, taller, ágora … y un Tulpa de la Madre Tierra.

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Seeding An Old City Rainbow Restoration Guild in Lexington, Chicago, and Milwaukee

Dear Professor,

I hope you will join in a conversation advancing collaboration experiments with engaged professors, urban agrarians, restoration artisans, and artists, connecting the South Side of Chicago, North Sides of Milwaukee and Lexington.

Diverse Restoration “Guild” of Roofers, Carpenters, and Urban Farmers

“Wastes to resources” is the motto of the Sweet Water Foundation I, Josh Fraundorf, and Emmanuel Pratt co-founded in 2010.

Our old city housing stock, empty lots, and young and old lifetime learners are resources we hope to harvest with you and yours.

The Greenhouse Is A Carpentry Workshop

This 2 minute film which features our “partner” Danny Glover provides evidence of the possibilities of our hoped for collaboration with you and yours.


Executive Director Emmanuel Pratt Is A Harvard GSD Leob Fellow

Board President James Godsil Is a Fulbright Scholar & Restoration Roofer

Godsil Was a Nanosecond Body Guard for MLK Chicago 1966

Josh Fraundorf’s Restoration Firm Envisions
Adding African American Artisans to German
And Hispanic Custom Shops

Why not?

We are not afraid.
We shall overcome.

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Toward An Olde City Restoration Guild

South Side Chicago/North Side Milwaukee Initial Focus


Milwaukee Chicago Mondregon As One

Restoration Transformation
Radical [Re]Construction


Dissertations Alive

New Schooling America

Why Not?

Possible Successors To Dr. Subra Mukherjee of Kolkata, West Bengal

Yash Kumbhat’s Stopwatch Group First Candidates.

Honoring Those Who Gave The Last Full Measure of Devotion by Building Bridges In Our Divided Cities


Asset Based “Chaordic” Development Sequencing, Social Learning Networks for Science, Technology, Engneering, Art, Agriculture, Agriculture, and Math, For the greater glory of God.

Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam(AMDG)

Jesuit Mantra

At the 200th anniversary celebration of St. Louis University High, my storied secondary school, Father Arturo Sosa, Superior General of the Jesuits, directly addressed, on a massive screen, the hundreds of people assembled. His basic message called upon us to build bridges in our divided cities.

Anyone interested in responding to this in a new way, please read this interview about the Sweet Water Foundation with Director Emmanuel Pratt, featured in the ​ARPA Journal* and consider joining in…not by offering money but by offering some time and outreach in whatever city you reside in. There are all kinds of young people across the nation(and even world) doing things like Sweet Water who could use some mentoring from young elders with high spirits.


Sweet Water Director Emmanuel Pratt re Building Bridges In Our Divided Cities

Emmanuel Pratt and Sweet Water team with eco priest Sean McDonnagh, key draft writer of Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si, at Dublin’s Irish Museum of Modern Art Sweet Water workshop.

Columbia University Journal of Applied Research Practices in Architecture interview with Emmanuel Pratt, with whom I co-founded the Sweet Water Foundation, harvesting the composted forms of value the transcended Sweet Water Organics.

​​ARPA Journal - Applied Research Practices in Architecture Journal is a public forum for debate based at the Columbia University Graduate School of … ​

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Peace of Mind

Transportation Call-In Day

By MICAH February 18, 2019

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Milwaukee Primary Election Day: Tuesday, February 19, 2019

By Disability Rights Wisconsin February 18, 2019

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Constitutional Consciousness Week: February 18-23

On Behalf of Marquette University

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Who Will Care for You: A Crisis in Care

By Disability Rights Wisconsin February 16, 2019

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February 12 Mental Health Task Force Meeting

By Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force February 10, 2019

Please join us for the Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force meeting, Tuesday, February 12, from 3 – 5:00 PM at IndependenceFirst, 540 S. 1st St. We value your input and hope to see you Tuesday!

Our agenda for February 12:

1. Milwaukee has a vibrant Hmong community. We are so pleased to welcome May Yer Thao, Wisconsin United Coalition of Mutual Assistance Association Board President, and Executive Director at Hmong Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce who will share her insights about Milwaukee’s Hmong community. She will help to guide us on to how to outreach to the community and provide services that are respectful, and culturally and linguistically informed.

2. What’s happening with medical and mental health services at the Milwaukee County Jail and House of Corrections? Milwaukee County will be moving to a new provider. This is a priority area for the Mental Health Task Force, as it impacts so many people with mental health needs. Attorney Pete Koneazny, Legal Aid Social, will update us.

3. Peer Delivered Services – Where Are We Now, Where Are We Going?

      We will hear from two experts:
     Shirley Drake,  Supervisor, Office of Consumer Affairs – Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division
     Marie Perry, Supervisor CLASP Program/ Peer Specialist and Trainer

4. Election Update – Get out the Vote for the February 19th Election! Barbara Beckert, Disability Vote Coalition

5. Policy Updates

     * Crisis Redesign – Results of our Survey
     * Mental Health Board Updates
     * State Policy Update – Save the date for our March 12th briefing on the biennial budget.

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January 2019 MKEN Coverage Report

By MKEN February 2nd, 2019

Mental Health Task Force/ Make It Work Milwaukee Update

Thanks to Milwaukee Enrollment Network for sharing their January report on coverage under Medicaid and in the market place. Note that enrollment is decreasing in several programs, and 70% of people who are uninsured in Milwaukee County are employed.

Click here to read the full report.

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NAMI Peer-to-Peer Education Program

By NAMI February 2nd, 2019

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Thurs. 1/31/19 Could Black English Mean a Prison Sentence?

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Black History Month Opportunities

By MICAH January 27, 2019

Join MICAH for 2019 Black History Month Opportunities

Black History Prayer Breakfast

Celebrate National Black Lives Matter Week of Action

Leadership for Community Transformation

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Disability Advocacy Day Registration Open

On Behalf of Survival Coalition January 27, 2019

Registration is now open for Disability Advocacy Day, scheduled for Wednesday, March 20, in Madison. Disability Advocacy Day is a day-long event focused on connecting Self-Advocates with their legislators to talk about issues that matter to them, including Medicaid, mental health services, transportation, and more.

Two ways to register:

Online at: https://www.eri-wi.org/dad/
Download form HERE

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Mass Supervision Study Released

By WISDOM January 22, 2019

A new report released today by the Justice Lab has found that Wisconsin has unusually high rates of community corrections supervision and reincarceration, adding considerably to the state’s prison populations and costing Wisconsin taxpayers millions annually.

Download the Full Report here, the Executive Summary here, and the Press Release here.

WISDOM and EXPO will present these findings, offer personal testimonies from those who experience these abuses, and strategize for change at events on Wednesday in Madison, Milwaukee and Eau Claire.

The Madison presentation of the report will be live-streamed by WisconsinEye:

Wednesday, January 23
10:00 am

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Reminder - A Crisis in Care: A Community Conversation on January 23, 2019

By Milwaukee Mental Health Task Force January 22, 2019

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Milwaukee Pedestrian Plan Open House

By Milwaukee Pedestrian Plan January 19, 2019

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Mass Supervision Events

By WISDOM January 19, 2018

On Wednesday, January 23, Columbia University Justice Labs will release a very important report, called “Mass Supervision in Wisconsin.” WISDOM will hold three events on that day. At each event, the report will be presented, impacted individuals will speak about their lived experience of the system, and there will be an advocacy training, to begin to prepare ourselves to speak about this and other issues at budget hearings, and at our March 26 Madison Action Day.

The three January 23 events, to which all are invited for free, will be:

* 10:00 am, in Room 411 South of the State Capitol in Madison (this might also be covered by Wisconsin Eye)
* 5:00 pm, at the Wisconsin African-American Women’s Center, 3020 W. Vliet St., Milwaukee
* 5:00 pm, at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 421 S. Farwell, Eau Claire

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The Last Hurrah? That’s up to WI GOP Legislators: An Interview with MPS Teachers and Administrators

By Patricia Obletz, Editor January 13, 2019

Parents, teachers and students, as well as the future lose when children are unable to learn survival skills, such as creative thinking, the history of human beings, and life proficiencies, like preserving the environment, rather than polluting it. That’s why two Milwaukee Public School (MPS) teachers and two special needs supervisors talked to PeaceOfMind about their experiences at work since 2011, when Wisconsin turned red and began shortchanging public education while slashing corporate taxes in earnest since Act 10. And, as they point out, some of the systemic ills within MPS happened long before the current governor. *

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Advocacy at Work


Time Is Running Out For Federally Funded Mental-Health Clinics

By Ilana Marcus January 4, 2019

An experimental mental-health and addiction treatment program that has shown early success in combating the opioid crisis is at risk of losing its federal funding.

An estimated 9,000 patients could lose access to medication-assisted treatment, and 3,000 clinic jobs could be lost if the funding is not renewed, according to the National Council for Behavioral Health. Some states may feel the impact as early as January, because clinics must give staff 60 to 90 days’ termination notice.

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Children’s Long-Term Support (CLTS) Community and Provider Forums – Please Share

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is scheduling forums across the state to provide updates on the Children’s Long-Term Support Medicaid Waiver program – see below for details. The Children’s Long Term Support Waiver (CLTS) is a Medicaid program that provides supports to children with intellectual, developmental, physical or emotional disabilities. The program is designed to provide services and supports at home and in the community to children with disabilities or special needs. It is administered by counties.

  • The forums are being held because the Wisconsin DHS / CLTS Waiver is going to set statewide provider rates for most CLTS services. Right now each county waiver agency decides how much their local providers are paid. The federal government is requiring Wisconsin do this. The statewide rates are scheduled to start on January 1, 2019. The forums will also provide information about the Children’s Wait List initiative.

  • Registration is requested – see the notice below from DHS for more information and a link to register. We encourage you to register and attend so that DHS know that there is strong interest from the disability community. Here is a link to the schedule of the forums. https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/clts/forums.htm

  • The Milwaukee session will be held August 9th from 10 AM – 12:30 PM at the Best Western Plus Milwaukee Airport Hotel 5105 S. Howell Ave. Please help spread the word to Milwaukee area providers, advocates, and families who may want to attend.

  • Note that the forums are being held in 8 locations around the state, including in Pewaukee on August 14 – there are two forums in southeastern Wisconsin.

Additional Background Regarding CLTS Forums
The forums are being held because the CLTS Waiver is going to set statewide provider rates for most CLTS services. These rates will have a big impact on whether a child has access to a service. In some cases the rates may increase access because the new rates are higher than what counties are paying. In other cases the rates may be lower than what a county is paying, which then may make it harder to hire or retain workers. DHS will distribute a list of the proposed rates at the forums. If you go, you should try to find out what the rates are for the services your child is receiving now. That way you can tell DHS if you think the new rates will help or hurt your child.

Two issues have not yet been addressed by the information DHS has provided. First, there are several rates for two services, supportive home care and respite. The rate is higher if the child has greater care needs. DHS has not explained exactly how it will decide which rate a child can use. You should ask DHS about that issue at the forum. Second, there needs to be a process that families can use to get a higher rate if the proposed rate isn’t high enough to secure qualified providers. You should ask DHS what that process will look like and how people will be able to use it.

If you can’t attend any of the forums, but still want to submit written comments you can do that by email at the following email address:

Questions People Can Ask at Community Forums on Rate-Setting for the CLTS Waiver

Here is a list of questions that you might consider asking if you go to one of the forums.

Questions related to the “tiers” for Supportive Home Care and Respite

What information from the long-term care functional screen will be used to decide which “tier” a child may be placed in?

What kind of needs would a child have if be placed in the middle tier? In the highest tier?

Will a family be able to appeal if they do not agree with the tier the child has been placed in?

Will DHS provide more information on how the tiers are determined before it starts using this new rate structure?

When will more information be available?

Questions related to an “Exceptions” process

Will DHS introduce an “exceptions” process by which providers or parents can ask for a rate that is higher than the rate generally available for a particular service?

When will we get more information about that process?

How will people or providers know about that system?

If a request for a higher rate is denied, will the parents or provider be able to appeal?

What types of situations does DHS think will be likely to be covered by this “exceptions” process?

Provider shortage is a real problem throughout the state. Low wages are a big reason for that. Will the inability to find a provider be a reason to exceed the normal rate for a service?

What will families have to show in order to qualify for an exception based on inability to find a provider?

Will DHS provide more information on the exceptions process before it starts using this new rate structure?

When will more information be available?

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Last edited by Courtney. Based on work by Godsil, patricia obletz, TeganDowling, Tyler Schuster, g, godsiil, tyler schuster, G, James Godsil, godsil, Sen, kt rusch, Micah Leinbach, Bill Sell, People's Books Coop, Brian Rothgery, Todd, Anne Steinberg, Philip Philo Kassner, patricia Obletz, patriciaobletz, Vineet, Olde, Worm Mon, Commonwealth Citizen, Theresa Ford, BillSell, marc rassbach, bs, Jacob Hey, Eddee Daniel and Steve Jerbi.  Page last modified on February 18, 2019

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