What is The Rhizome House?
The Rhizome House is a radical social center in Cleveland Heights, OH on Erie & Mississauga land, formed by people who believe in connecting others to create better worlds in the shell of the old.
Rhizome is an anarchist collective. We do not have a party line and we cultivate different visions of what it looks like to build a world based on mutual aid and free of oppressive systems, but it is important to all of us to run a social center free of any political parties and independent from the non-profit industrial complex.
What is a social center?
We provide space and support for others to form social connections as an alternative to domination and oppression. For example:
-We oppose political domination of the state by hosting jail support programs and learning community accountability processes.
-We oppose personal domination at the point-of-production by hosting work place trainings.
-We oppose the impersonal domination of money and markets by hosting a free store and mutual aid programs to meet needs.
-We oppose oppression by taking action against various isms: sexism, racism, ableism..
We are a volunteer collective and aim to keep all events free. Our goal is to co-create a space for people to form social connections around mutual aid, discussion, reading groups, game/movie nights, various other radical project work, and, perhaps most importantly, just hanging out together. In an alienated and fearful world, we want to foster connection and nurture ground for dreaming otherwise.
That said, we are grateful for donations to help us cover rent and make the space more accessible (e.g., we are in the process of raising money to build a ramp for the back yard). To donate to the project, you can become a supporter on Open Collective. We also have books and zines for sale.
For outside groups that want to use Rhizome for events at which they will be collecting money or selling goods: no one should ever be denied entry to the Rhizome House for lack of money (e.g. if money is collected at the door for events, it should be on a donation basis); people selling goods and services can put a price to cover their expenses and labor, but we ask that prices be sliding scale to increase the accessibility and allow those with fewer resources to pay less while those with more resources pay more; if an organization that has outside funding or paid members uses the space, we ask they make a donation to the Rhizome House to help us with rent and other expenses we incur to keep the space open.
Hosting your event at The Rhizome House:
So, you want to host an event at the Rhizome House? Here’s what you need to know.
Think about the following, then email firstname.lastname@example.org
-Review the RZH calendar here for availability before reaching out.
BEFORE THE EVENT:
-Has the collective approved your event, including the date, start, and end time?
-Is it a one-time or recurring event?
-Who is the point person from your group? Do we have their contact info?
-Has it been added to the public calendar (if it’s a private event, it will show up as ‘RESERVED’)?
-Is one of our collective members in your group? If not, is one available to open and close the space?
-Would you like us to boost on social media? What is your plan for outreach? (flyering the street, etc.)
-Do you need use of any special equipment (projector, virtual meeting equipment are available. We do not have a PA or sound system at this time.)
TASK LIST BEFORE LEAVING:
-Wipe down any surfaces used
-Vacuum if visibly necessary
-If extra chairs are pulled out, please put them back where you found them.
-If furniture, displays, or art are moved, please put them back where you found them.
-If you make a mess, please clean up after yourself! Throw out food wrappers, empty cups, and any other trash before you leave.
-Please replace trash bags if bins are more than half full, take the bags to the cans in the alley
-Wash any dishes used
-If you put anything in the community fridge, remember to take it with you!
-Please ensure bathroom is in usable condition i.e. no puddles, toilet paper available, etc.
-If we are out of something (soap, toilet paper, towels) please let us know!
-Turn off the lights and lock all doors when you leave. Check to make sure back door is locked and barred
-Turn off heat or A/C
WINTER ONLY: If consistently below freezing, leave heat on at 55 degrees.
If you have any questions about where to find something or need help locating cleaning supplies, please ask the RZH member you are coordinating with.