Guest, Erin Polley

Guest Name: 
Erin Polley
Guest Occupation: 
AFSC Program Coordinator Indiana Peacebuilding Program
Guest Biography: 
ERIN POLLEY
Indiana Peace Building Program Coordinator
Areas of Expertise: 
Peace Building | Federal Budget | Arts and Social Change

Erin Polley is the Program Coordinator for the Indiana Peacebuilding Program. She has been involved with AFSC’s work to address war and militarism since 2003, when she started with the organization as a volunteer. She has worked on such projects as the widely acclaimed "Eyes Wide Open" exhibit, "Windows and Mirrors: Reflections on the War in Afghanistan" and has done local organizing work in Chicago and Indianapolis.

In her capacity as program coordinator, she works with students, activists and people of faith in Indiana, challenging militarism and violence in the U.S. and Israel-Palestine. She also coordinated the “If I had a Trillion Dollars” Youth Film Festival.

Erin has appeared in numerous media outlets, including the Indianapolis Star, Nuvo, Public News Service, and the Indianapolis Recorder.     

The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) is a Quaker organization that includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace, and humanitarian service.

AFSC’s Indiana Peacebuilding Program works throughout the state to promote peaceful alternatives to war and educate people about the human and economic costs of war. The program coordinates AFSC’s national If I Had a Trillion Dollars youth film festival and, in coalition with a statewide network of activists, tours peace exhibits across Indiana.

The program works with veterans, faith communities, labor groups, and community advocates for women’s rights, fair wages, food security, and education and immigration reform.

MISSION STATEMENT OF AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE (AFSC)

The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) is a Quaker organization that promotes lasting peace with justice, as a practical expression of faith in action. Drawing on continuing spiritual insights and working with people of many backgrounds, we nurture the seeds of change and respect for human life that transform social relations and systems.

Vision

AFSC envisions a world in which lasting peace with justice is achieved through active nonviolence and the transforming power of love. We work toward a world in which:

  • All persons affirm the common good and recognize our mutual interdependence
  • Societies steward resources equitably
  • Caring, respectful economic development, including work with dignity, promotes wellbeing for all 
  • Communities and societies fractured by exclusion and marginalization are healed and transformed, embracing inclusion and equality
  • Conflicts are resolved through restorative means and without force or coercion
  • Governments and societal institutions are fair and accountable

Values

AFSC values are grounded in Quaker experience and universal truths that are upheld by many faiths and that honor the light of the divine in each person.

  • We cherish the belief that there is that of God in each person, leading us to respect the worth, dignity, and equality of all.
  • We regard no person as our enemy. While we often oppose specific actions and abuses of power, we seek to call forth the goodness and truth in each individual. 
  • We strive for integrity, simplicity, and practicality in our expressions and actions.
  • We assert the transforming power of love and active nonviolence, as a challenge to injustice and violence and as a force for reconciliation.
  • We work in partnership with people in communities around the world, respecting their wisdom about how to change their circumstances and offering our own insights with humility.
  • We trust the power of the Spirit to guide the individual and collective search for truth and practical action.
  • We accept our understandings of truth as incomplete and have faith that new perceptions of truth will continue to be revealed.