The Marshall/Mustangs Overcoming Racism through Education (MORE) Network is a grassroots organization of culture workers, organizers, and community members who envision a world without racism honoring the culture, knowledge, and power of BIPOC communities. We are committed to a collaborative effort to break down barriers through education and conversation in the Marshall community and the Southwest Minnesota Region.
The MORE Network formed Fall 2020 as a local response to global uprisings. Rural areas are known for being close-knit with deep roots. For all the benefits these connections provide, we know not all members of rural communities experience equal opportunities to feel at home. However, we look around and see that the majority of our community seeks connection and equality, but we recognize we cannot reach those goals without the opportunities for conversation and education.
A hub is the point of connection where multiple spokes come together to form a connection. We form the MORE network to create a central hub where all members of the Marshall community can come together to learn, have conversations, and move Marshall forward into a future where all people experience life free from discrimination.
We know that to accomplish this goal, we need to include all members of the Marshall community, including members of the SMSU community. Students who come to school in Marshall shop in our stores, eat in our restaurants, and contribute to the diverse perspectives in our area. Our efforts to understand the vastness of our globally connected world need to include connections to the SMSU community.
Our expansion to include Southwestern Minnesota occurred in 2022, acknowledging that the issues in the Marshall community are not housed solely within the borders of this city nor is the desire for creating welcoming communities.
Our Approach is rooted in:
Shared Learning: Through trainings, readings, and network building, we create spaces for community and conversation, connecting people who seek learning opportunities with community leaders and educators.
Organizing: We share a community power building model of organizing where we all have a role to play in making impactful change within community and systems. We are committed to building power in ways that are restorative and sustainable for BIPOC communities.
Community Leadership: We center the knowledge and vision of BIPOC leaders closest to the issues, and support their growth and development as key in making long lasting change. We encourage civic engagement, empowering others to make great change in their community.
Over the years, we have facilitated training cohorts, sat on the City of Marshall's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Commission, and created partnerships with various restorative justice organizations, the Anti-Racism Study Dialogue Circles (ASDIC) and the Facilitating Racial Equity Collaborative (FREC), creating a network of equity educators spanning the state of Minnesota. As we look towards the future, we are guided by our unyielding commitment to end discrimination and address intersectionality with racism including, but not limited to, medical racism, environmental racism, sexual/gender identity discrimination, housing discrimination and non inclusive work environments.