The South Africa Catalyst Project Funding Proposal
by South Africa Catalyst Project
California, United States
Contents: History • Goals and Philosophy • Structure and Decision-Making • Goal Implementation • PROPOSED BUDGET (SEPT. '78-SEPT. '79) • REFERENCES • COMMENTS FROM OUR CORRESPONDENCE • CVs of Mary Kathleen McTigue, Chris Hables Gray, Lawrence Litvak, and Karl Frederick Seidman • The South Africa Catalyst Project was formed in June 1977 by 20 people involved in the Stanford Committee for a Responsible Investment Policy (SCRIP) in response to many requests for aid from activists at other campuses following SCRIP's May 9, 1977 sit-in, at which 294 people were arrested. Activists expressed a need for both material on organizing techniques and a more accessible analysis of the U.S. role in South Africa. The group produced both an organizer's handbook and a detailed booklet on U.S. investment in South Africa. Our field organizer has made extended trips throughout California, working closely with approximately 20 campus groups. New anti-apartheid campaigns have formed at previously inactive schools, and greater coordination is happening among those already involved. In spring 1978, campus groups focused on companies operating in South Africa and banks making loans there (e.g., Bank of America and the Export-Import Bank). On May 18, simultaneous demonstrations and sit-ins at campuses in the University of California system won their demand that the Regents schedule a special June meeting to discuss possible divestment of holdings in companies operating in South Africa. In May, 1978, the Catalyst Project testified before the U.N. Special Committee Against Apartheid. Anti-apartheid activities increased elsewhere during 1977, most notably in the Northeast. The Five College Committee for the Liberation of Southern Africa was formed to support and coordinate work at the schools in the Amherst area. This committee helped organize a meeting in December, 1977 that led to the formation of the Northeast Coalition for the Liberation of Southern Africa (NECLSA), consisting of representatives from ten campus groups and several larger organizations such as the American Committee on Africa (ACOA). NECLSA organized a successful conference at Yale University during March 31-April 2, which attracted over 400 people from 50 schools across the country. This conference led to initiation of a regional campus newsletter, and a week of coordinated actions at over 15 Northeastern schools during April 14-24. Several non-student organizations, such as the ACOA, have provided excellent information on U.S. involvement in South Africa, but such groups are neither experienced in nor directed toward campus organizing, and their information is not directed specifically toward a student constituency. There are also student coalitions already in existence, such as NECLSA in the East and Campuses United Against Apartheid (CUAA) which the Catalyst has started in the West; but these coalitions are composed of full-time students who are actively involved in their own campus groups, and who tend to be somewhat separated from each other geographically. The Catalyst Project aims to build a strong student anti-apartheid movement that will be part of more broadly-based activity in the U.S. that will help precipitate the economic disengagement and help prevent U.S. military intervention there. Both Catalyst collective offices will be equipped to supply a broad range of resources to local student groups, as well as to larger regional and national organizations. Resources that the Catalyst Project plans to produce are described, including a monthly newsletter. The proposal contains lengthy lists of references (including people associated with various U.S. organizations, student groups, professors, and South African exiles) and comments from correspondence (also mostly from U.S. organizations, a professor, and a librarian).
Used by permission of former members of the South Africa Catalyst Project.