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10 Actions to End Solitary Confinement

October 1st, 2018|Categories: Activism, Criminal Justice, Narrators, VOW Book Series|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Six by ten feet. That’s the average size of the cell in which tens of thousands of people incarcerated in the United States linger for weeks, months, and even decades in solitary confinement. With little stimulation and no meaningful human contact, these individuals struggle to preserve their identity, sanity, and even their lives. We've just released the latest oral history book in [...]

Puerto Rico, One Year After María

September 20th, 2018|Categories: Environmental Issues, Exile & Displacement, Home and Belonging, Poverty and Economic Rights, Puerto Rico, VOW Editor Interviews, VOW Story Lab|Tags: , , , , |

It’s been one year since Hurricane María battered Puerto Rico, destroying thousands of homes, killing nearly 3,000 people, and leaving many across the island without electricity, access to clean drinking water, food, and medical care. In the past year, the current administration has disregarded facts, crafted its own narrative of the aftermath, and withheld crucial [...]

Fighting Words: Stories from the New York Sanctuary Movement

August 28th, 2018|Categories: Activism, Borders and Boundaries, Exile & Displacement, Immigration, Narrators, Refugees|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

by Jon Earle Image courtesy of The New Sanctuary Coalition A bride and groom are married in chains. A mother prepares her daughters for life without her. Two prison friends sing, "Lord, give us a big heart to love, and a strong heart to fight." These are the stories of immigrants facing [...]

Inside an Immigrant Detention Facility

August 15th, 2018|Categories: Borders and Boundaries, Civil Rights and Security, Criminal Justice, English Language Learners, Exile & Displacement, Home and Belonging, Immigration, Narrators, Refugees, VOW Book Series|Tags: , , , , , |

The topic of immigration has been a critical political issue since borders were built, yet immigrant voices continue to be excluded from this ongoing story within the United States. Recently, we've seen a surge of media coverage discussing an appalling scene at our border: refugees are being arrested and locked away in immigrant detention facilities, and [...]

Meet Our Summer Interns from Haverford College

August 9th, 2018|Categories: Dispatches from the Field, Education|Tags: , , , |

Each summer, Haverford College and Voice of Witness partner on an internship program for up to two of their students. This year, Chace Pulley and Bonnie McKelvie came to join us for ten weeks, helping us transcribe interviews, work onsite with teachers, and conduct development and communications research. We are very sad to see them go! We’ve [...]

Nowhere to Turn: Hundreds of refugees stuck in Tijuana with no clear path forward

July 23rd, 2018|Categories: Borders and Boundaries, Exile & Displacement, Home and Belonging, Immigration, Refugees, VOW Editor Interviews, Youth Migrants|Tags: , , , , , , |

by Steven Mayers Hundreds gather each morning at El Chaparral port of entry in Tijuana                         Crossing from San Ysidro into Mexico on foot, I don’t even need to show my passport. After walking down a hallway for a few [...]

An Oral History of Organic Farming

July 10th, 2018|Categories: Education, Environmental Issues, Labor Issues|Tags: , , , , |

Our Education Advisory Board member Katie Kuszmar has been collaborating with one of the founders of California Certified Organic Farmers to preserve the history of the organic farming movement and honor the voices of its pioneers by collecting oral history interviews from organic farmers. To contribute to the project, Katie interviewed an organics pioneer named Paul [...]

Resettlement Stories for World Refugee Day

June 20th, 2018|Categories: Exile & Displacement, Home and Belonging, Immigration, Refugees, VOW Book Series, VOW Story Lab|Tags: , , , |

A refugee's story does not end once they’ve reached a host country. In fact, that is often just the beginning of their journey. On World Refugee Day, join us in honoring the courage of refugees by amplifying their stories. Our new project, Resettled, explores the displacement, trauma, and community integration refugees face when resettling in rural Appalachia. By [...]

Our First San Francisco-Based Project!

June 12th, 2018|Categories: Home and Belonging, Immigration, Refugees, VOW Book Series, VOW Editor Interviews, VOW Story Lab|Tags: , , , |

We're so excited about our first San Francisco-based VOW oral history project, Proyecto Santuario, a participatory, community-based project that explores the history of San Francisco as a "sanctuary city" through the voices of Central American immigrants and refugees. Proyecto Santuario is currently incubating through the VOW Story Lab, which provides oral history training, editorial guidance, and project funding [...]

Announcing Our New Oral History Projects!

June 4th, 2018|Categories: Immigration, Narrators, Poverty and Economic Rights, Refugees, VOW Book Series, VOW Story Lab|Tags: , , , , , |

The Voice of Witness team is excited to introduce three new oral history projects incubating in the VOW Story Lab! From Puerto Rico, to San Francisco and Appalachia, the inspiring people behind these projects are determined to share the untold stories of their communities and change the mainstream narrative around some of our most pressing injustices. Support [...]