Building on a lifetime of nonviolent action
If you talked to Louise and Severyn Bruyn long enough, you'd hear about protests, acts of civil disobedience, and decades of work centered on economic justice, antiwar activism, and environmental concerns.
Through their 67 years of marriage, AFSC served as a source of support for the Bruyns' activism. That's one of the reasons they became longtime donors to AFSC and included a bequest to the organization in their will.
"Our commitment [to nonviolent social change] came from learning about what happens when war and violence are viewed as a solution," says Louise. "Finding out about Quakers and AFSC, knowing what they stood for—nonviolent action, caring, and compassion—we knew we wanted to be on that side."
Louise, a former school teacher, made national headlines in 1971 when she walked from Newton, Massachusetts, to Washington, D.C., to protest the Vietnam War. Severyn, who passed away in 2019, was a sociology professor at Boston College for more than 40 years. He taught a course on nonviolent action and authored 10 books—all while taking part in "more demonstrations than I can remember," he recalled. Louise founded an environmental action organization in retirement. And both also served with AFSC—Severyn as a board member and Louise with a 1980s-era program in Economic Conversion out of the Cambridge, Massachusetts, office.
For Louise and Severyn, giving to AFSC has been another way to contribute to social change.
For information on the variety of ways you can include AFSC in your estate planning, please contact Alyssa Chatten at 888-588-2372 or GiftPlanning@afsc.org.