T-MAPs Section 5: Support

This is a continuation of the series on Transformative Mutual Aid Practices (T-MAP’s)
(See: https://quakersandreligioussocialism.com/t-maps/ )

Section 5 is about where you find support. There are sections where you list the names of people and organizations that you find supportive. I won’t list my support people here, but you get the idea. This section ends with the following:

Conclusion – T-MAPs as a Tool for Mutual Aid 

We hope the process of completing your T-MAP has given you new insights into your own story and inspiration to engage in this process with others. It’s a living document – you can keep revising it and adding to it as you gain more ideas and visions. While T-MAPs can help you map your individual transformation and growth, we think it’s more powerful as a collective practice. T-MAPs is a tool that is designed to be developed in groups, shared with groups, and practiced in groups. Our vision is that T-MAPs and tools like it will play an important role in evolving the ability of creative activist movements and mental health support networks to communicate with each other and build the kinds of stronger, more effective communities and forms of resistance that our current historical moment requires.

By reflecting deeply on our own experiences and developing a stronger connection with ourselves and what’s important to us, we can become more comfortable sharing that knowledge; we can learn from each other and more easily collaborate with one another. By having a better awareness of each other’s personal struggles, it’s easier to understand our similarities and differences and navigate them with respect, love, and understanding. T-MAPs is really our attempt to help operationalize mutual aid.

Crisis = Opportunity

Taking the time to articulate basic needs and desires about wellness and support when someone is in a clear head space can make an enormous difference when any kind of crisis emerges. Having others who already know what your needs and desires are can turn crisis into an opportunity for growth and transformation, for building solidarity and grounded friendship. Understood and articulated, our weaknesses can actually become our strengths.

At the same time, by opening up space to talk about life lessons and personal stories it can become easier to talk about collective dynamics, and things that are often challenging to talk about in groups, like power and larger structures that affect all of us in different ways depending on our social location, like race and class and gender and ability. While there are many ways that our differences can end up separating us, if we can learn to talk about the difference our stories can actually bring us together and raise levels of awareness. T-MAPs is an invitation to a collective practice of transformation and growth. Skillfully facilitated, a group using these questions can evolve to trust and support each other in the hard times on the horizon. 


Completing the T-MAP workbook online has been beneficial to me. Now I’d like to see if there is a group who wants to explore this together.

I’m also working on a T-MAP workbook related to Spiritual Mutual Aid.

Linda Lewis, AFSC Country Representative for China/North Korea, and Dan Jasper, AFSC Public Education and Advocacy Coordinator for Asia, visited Iowa at the invitation of Jeff Kisling, clerk of the Peace and Social Concerns Committee of Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative) and Patti McKee, director of Catholic Peace Ministry. Linda spoke at Bear Creek Friends Meeting in Earlham, Iowa. Linda and Dan both spoke at Des Moines Valley Friends Meeting House. They were interviewed by WHO-TV, local videographer Rodger Routh, and talk show host Ed Fallon. They met Iowa Immigrant Rights Program staff Jody Mashek, Erica Johnson and Berenice Nava and travelled to Scattergood Friends School to meet Thomas Weber, Head of School, and Mark Quee, Farm Manager. Mark gave them a tour of the school’s farm. In 2001, AFSC hosted a North Korean agricultural tour of Iowa.

Photo credit: Jon Krieg, American Friends Service Committee

Transformative Mutual Aid Practices (T-MAPs) are a set of tools that provide space for building a personal “map” of wellness strategies, resilience practices, unique stories, and community resources. Creating a T-MAP will inspire you to connect your struggle to collective struggles. When we make and share our T-MAPs with others they become potent tools for healing and liberation.

One of the main benefits of making an T-MAPs document is being able to get clarity on the things that are important to us and being able to share it with other people. In this section, we identify the people, services, and resources that are the most important sources of support for us. This helps us remember where we can turn when things get hard, and who to stay in touch with along the way.


Creative Commons License

 T-MAPs is licensed by Jacks McNamara and Sascha DuBrul under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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