Building Grassroots Movements and Non-Profits in the Psychedelic Field
By Chacruna Institute
Wednesday, May 31st, 2023 from 12:00-1:30pm PST
As the psychedelic movement rapidly grows within the mainstream sphere, we can see many startups, biotech companies, for profits, public benefits, and nonprofits being created. With this influx of projects looking for a space within the psychedelic ecosystem, it can be incredibly difficult for some organizations to gain the traction they need in order to achieve their goals, especially for those grassroots nonprofits who are looking to expand advocacy and education within the field. What does the non-profit/grassroots movement in the psychedelic field look like now, and how has that changed over the years? Are there instances where non-profits/grassroots movements collaborate with the so called emergent “psychedelic industry”? Is there room for the industry to support non-profits and grassroots movements, or are they at odds with each other? How do you sustainably grow community and minimize burn out?Join us this conversation with Ifetayo Harvey, who is the founder and board president at the People of Color Psychedelic Collective, Victor Acero, who is a Co-Founder and Director of Internal Operations for the Intercollegiate Psychedelics Network, Daniel Garcia, who is founding Board Member of People of Color Psychedelic Collective and licensed to practice law in Colorado, and Kufikiri Imara, who is a globally recognized voice as a champion on the important issues of inclusion, diversity, education, and access within the larger psychedelic community.
Ifetayo Harvey is the founder and board president at the People of Color Psychedelic Collective. Ifetayo’s experience of growing up with her father in prison brought her to drug policy reform work at the Drug Policy Alliance. In 2013, Ifetayo was the opening plenary speaker at the International Drug Policy Reform Conference in Denver, Colorado. Ifetayo briefly worked at the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies in 2015 where she was inspired by Kai Wingo’s Women and Entheogens Conference in Cleveland, Ohio. Ifetayo worked at the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) for five years because of her passion for ending the war on drugs. While at DPA, Ifetayo penned the piece Why the Psychedelic Community Is So White in 2016 and began organizing other folks of color and allies in psychedelic circles. Ifetayo comes from a family of seven children raised by her mother in Charleston, South Carolina. She has a Bachelor’s degree from Smith College in history and African studies.
Victor Acero is 5th Year PhD in the Bioengineering Department at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Center for Neurotrauma, Neurodegeneration, and Restoration at the CMJC Veterans Hospital, Center for Brain Injury and Repair, and the Penn Psychedelics Collaborative. He is also an organizer for the upcoming PhilaDelic Conference at UPenn (July 13th – 15th). Victor’s thesis focuses on the development and characterization of a 3D tissue engineered in-vitro model for neuroscience research. He has also delivered talks on the neuroscience underlying the therapeutic potential of psychedelics for neurotrauma. He is also passionate about policy reform, community organizing, neuroethics, and philosophy. He is also a Co-Founder and Director of Internal Operations for the Intercollegiate Psychedelics Network, a non-profit organization developing students into the next generation of diverse and interdisciplinary leaders in the psychedelic ecosystem. He is the Chair of the Graduate Faculty Board for the Penn Psychedelic Collaborative.
Daniel Garcia founding Board Member of People of Color Psychedelic Collective; licensed to practice law in Colorado; former Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter leader.
Kufikiri Imara is a globally recognized voice as a champion on the important issues of inclusion, diversity, education, and access within the larger psychedelic community. Kufikiri Imara was born and raised on unceded Huichin territory of the Ohlone people (Oakland, California / a.k.a. “The Town”). With parents that were involved in the Civil Rights and Black Power movements of the 1960’s and 1970’s, he grew up in a family and community that strongly emphasized cultural awareness and social responsibility. He has volunteered with Green Earth Poets Society in NYC, bringing poetry to incarcerated African-American youth. He was an early member of the Entheogen Integration Circle in NYC, supporting marginalized communities within the larger psychedelic community. His past studies with Sacred Garden Community were focused on deepening his understanding as someone who holds space, and was focused on growing diversity. A former member of the Decriminalize Nature Oakland grassroots collective, after his efforts to help see the landmark resolution passed, he went on to head the DNO committee on Outreach, Education, Access, & Integration. He was part of the team of instructors for the first of its kind above ground training, with the former OLP, in Jamaica, on psychedelic assisted therapy that included engagement. Among the many platforms that he has lent his voice to include but are not limited to the Horizons Media documentary film Covid-19, Black Lives, & Psychedelics; various Chacruna symposiums and conferences; guest lecturer at the University of California at Berkeley; various Oakland Hyphae events; as well as various articles, conferences, and podcasts. He was the inaugural facilitator for the BIPOC Entheogen Integration Circle in partnership with the San Francisco Psychedelic Society. He is also one of the co-creators of t