Dear Friends of Herstory,
As we have been converting our community workshops in Spanish and English to an online model, there has been a bit of a silver lining in that we are no longer bound by the difficulties posed by the lack of accessibility to transportation and the endemic segregation of our neighborhoods, each in its own silo. It has been a longtime dream to bring together the students who were writing with us in Hempstead, Westbury, Uniondale, Baldwin, Glen Cove, Central Islip and Patchogue (and more) together to hear one another's stories. While the college students we serve have had chances to get to know one another through our Freedom Forums and other cross-campus events, our high school students haven't had this experience. Now would be our chance to create a vibrant summer program where this could happen.
We invite you to share the following invitation with any students you know who might be interested in participating in a writing intensive summer program with the goal of sharing their stories with the world, as we lay the plans for a series of small, intimate weekly workshops where students can get to know one another through shaping their stories side by side, to take place in English and Spanish and bilingual modules, with times to be determined as the project unfolds.
PLEASE SHARE THE INVITATION BELOW
Herstory Writers Workshop, in collaboration with the Humanities Institute at Stony Brook University*, invites you to participate in creating "Students' Stories for Our Time." As COVID-19 has closed our schools and communities, forever changing our lives and daily routines, now more than ever, we need to hear the stories that you have to offer to the world.
This summer we will be creating a network of virtual writing workshops to allow high school and college students all over Long Island to unite to raise awareness of the inequities that the virus has exacerbated for their families, their communities and themselves, creating a vibrant body of writings that will advance the movement for equity, inclusion and justice at this time when every one of our voices is needed more than ever to protect our most basic human rights.
Write with students from different campuses and neighborhoods, as together we work to build a student movement to address the most immediate inequities and needs while creating a sense of community and hope.
In weekly online workshops student activists will learn special techniques to generate stories strong enough to move readers to compassion while deepening their understanding of urgent issues such as economic and racial justice or the rights of immigrants or people with disabilities. College and high school students will write side by side, helping to overcome the heartbreaking economic, racial and ethnic segregation that have plagued this long island of ours, so exaggerated by the effects of the virus, as story by story we use memoir to resist injustice, restore dignity and give voice to our common humanity.
The stories generated by this project will be published and widely read on websites of Herstory and its partners, social media and newsletters. The stories will also be included in Herstory's growing archive, with the hope that they will be taught in high school and college classes, and used as sermons in mosques, synagogues and churches, in interactions with legislators and human service providers, wherever they might make a difference.
*Students from high schools, colleges and universities are welcome to join, as we work with our college and school partners to roll out options to help you meet your community service and community engagement requirements.