Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Poly-Related "Giving Back" Activity: Volunteering for CARAS

I volunteer for and support several organizations whose mission involves serving the polyamory community. Thank you for considering the following about one of them, an exciting organization doing work essential to the wellbeing of the polyamory community, amongst others - the Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS). Note at the end there is a ringing endorsement from a local poly community organizer, Marly Davidson.

Thanks also for permitting me to post it here. I promise not to be a nuisance and appreciate everyone's patience.

This from CARAS board chair Jonathan Krall:

The Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS) is dedicated to the support and promotion of excellence in the study of alternative sexualities, and the dissemination of research results to the alternative sexuality communities, the public, and the research community.

We hold monthly staff meetings in the Washington DC metro area and are in need of volunteers. This is an opportunity to work with a team of bright and dedicated volunteers who are helping to bring a community voice to research and to assist researchers with work that is important to the BDSM, swinger, and polyamory communities.

*** Media Expert ***

Work with staff to produce one news release each quarter and no more than one per month. Send out by fax, hardcopy, or e-mail as needed to major news outlets in North America.

*** Development Program Director ***

Keep track of volunteers, action items and produce reports for the ED (informal, monthly) and for the board approx quarterly). Attend monthly meetings in DC. Keep up with e-mail (average 1 messages per day).

*** Webmaster ***

Get our web page on track within the Expression Engine content managment system, set up paypal (or similar) for subscriptions and donations, and deal with SQL database info to securely handle donor and subscriber info.

*** Community Outreach ***

CARAS serves the swing, polyamory and BDSM communities, as well as subcultures, such as related queer or sexworker communities. We could use volunteers from all of these communities to come to our meetings, learn about CARAS, and spread the word about what we are doing.

Other volunteer opportunities are available in the DC area, especially for people with computer skills. If you can attend a monthly staff meeting, please come out and find out more about us.

Also: CARAS has its corporate headquarters in the San Francisco Bay area--volunteer opportunities are available there as well (Contact:

Thanks kindly for your attention. :)



Jonathan Krall
Board Chair
Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities

Recommendation of CARAS volunteer Marly Davidson:

Good Poly People,

I recommend to you the Community-Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS). I am on the east coast staff (it's national) and attend monthly meetings in the DC area, volunteering alongside academics and community leaders from the various alternative sexuality communities (BDSM, poly, and swing, and related subcultures). Jonathan Krall, PhD, a member of our DC-area poly organization, the Chesapeake Polyamory Network, is the board chairman.

You can read about CARAS, join, sign up for the listserv, participate on the forums, and volunteer as staff and/or as research subjects. There are several positions open for volunteers, especially if you have computer skills. I helped staff their booth at the American Sociological Association Annual Meeting in NYC a couple weeks ago and enjoyed hanging out with them and talking with graduate students and academics who are doing research on these communities.

The staff meetings are a blast, and since it's designed to support researchers of BDSM, poly, and swing communities and put them in touch with these communities, the subject matter is always interesting. CARAS is committed to involving community members so the research protocols ask the right questions. If you want more information, contact me at Thanks for your interest!

Marly Davidson
Emeritus Board Member
Chesapeake Polyamory Network
Washington DC metropolitan area

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