The HEAR/HERE Community Billboard Truck, a vehicle for story-telling, empowerment, and interaction, is the culmination of Commons Archive's previous phases of community-based activities. The HEAR/HERE truck is a vintage, custom-built EV vehicle equipped with a large format digital screen, a sound system and an eye-catching static display board.
Designed for neighbors to listen and gather stories, share memories, and promote local community gatherings, the truck encourages neighbor interaction and understanding. Black youth activists drive the truck, engaging neighbors with questions around belonging. As we emerge to rebuild a sense of what we once knew, how do we create better support systems for our neighborhoods? It was during this time of COVID-induced insolation when Commons Archive and its community partners recognized the emergent need for a reparative process.
Since its launch in early summer 2022, the HEAR/HERE has been touring North Oakland blocks on a weekly basis, bringing neighbors out of their homes in curious joy to learn about upcoming local events, resources, and most importantly, interact and connect with one another. The Community Billboard truck has been part of many community events - from the Juneteenth celebration hosted by the West Oakland Cultural Action Network (WOCAN), to neighborhood potlucks, free food drives by the Self-Help Hunger Program, gatherings at local schools and cafes, and block parties such as the National Night Out for Safety and Liberation in collaboration with Neighbors for Racial Justice (N4RJ).