Activism

Creating a Brave and Safe Space for Storytelling

August 15th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Brave Stories, Narrators, Say It Forward, VOW Book Series, VOW Story Lab|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

by VOW Staff We at Voice of Witness know well that the process of story sharing can be transformational and life-changing for both audience and storyteller. But behind the simple act of asking others to share their stories, there are nuanced and always-changing uncertainties related to story ownership, trust, retraumatization, and sometimes the very [...]

Meet Our Summer Interns Margaret and Eliana

August 8th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Arts, Education, Say It Forward|Tags: , , , , , |

This summer, we have been fortunate to have four wonderful interns join us to support our work. In this post, two of our interns Margaret O'Hare from Haverford College and Eliana Swerdlow from Yale reflect on their summer at VOW. Margaret O’Hare My internship at Voice of Witness this summer has been an incredible learning experience and [...]

Meet Our Summer Interns Molly and Ari

August 8th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Arts, Education|Tags: , , , |

This summer, we have been fortunate to have four wonderful interns join us to support our work. In this post, two of our interns Molly Hawkins and Ari Kim from Haverford College reflect on their summer at VOW. Molly Hawkins In mid-July, Ari, Margaret, and I were able to attend an oral history workshop [...]

Reader to Witness: Stories of Undocumented Lives

August 2nd, 2019|Categories: Activism, Borders and Boundaries, Exile & Displacement, Immigration, Narrators, Refugees, VOW Book Series, Witness|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

by Eliana Swerdlow The human rights crisis at the United States and Mexican border sits at the forefront of my consciousness. As I go about my daily life, I think of the stories of many individuals who are suffering at the hands of the American government. As the media reports, we’re at a dangerous moment [...]

Art and Activism at the El Paso Border

July 15th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Arts, Bold Movements, Borders and Boundaries, Brave Stories, Exile & Displacement, Home and Belonging, Immigration, Narrators, Refugees, Youth Migrants|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

by Ela Banerjee “Thank you for joining us on this glorious day for America!” Hearing these words from our pilot, Solito, Solita narrator Gabriel Mendez and I both stiffened and shared an uncomfortable glance. It’s true that we were traveling from San Francisco to El Paso, Texas on the Fourth of July. Shades of [...]

From the Archives: Nadia’s Story in Out of Exile

June 25th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Brave Stories, Civil Rights and Security, Exile & Displacement, Narrators, Political Oppression, Poverty and Economic Rights, Refugees, Sudan, VOW Book Series|Tags: , , , , |

2019 marks 10 years for Voice of Witness as a nonprofit, and in celebration of this exciting milestone, we’re resurfacing powerful stories from every oral history book in our series. Though time has passed since these stories were first published, many of the themes and issues they address are as relevant and important as ever. In [...]

RadGram: Weaving the Story of the Powerful Grandma

June 17th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Arts, Environmental Issues, Poverty and Economic Rights, Public Health|Tags: , , , , , , |

 By Zoe Swartz and Praveena Fernes Our story begins with a radical grandma, Ranong Kongsean, who had a vision for uniting her friends through weaving in order to support her community’s fight for environmental justice. Ten years ago, a gold mine was built near Ranong’s village, Na Nong Bong in Thailand. Pollution from [...]

Oral History as Social Justice

January 4th, 2019|Categories: Activism, Arts, Cultural and Personal Identity, Education, Narrators, Say It Forward, VOW Book Series|Tags: , , , , |

2019 marks an exciting milestone for Voice of Witness, as we celebrate our ten-year anniversary as a nonprofit, and of our education program. We're proud to have grown our education program into a mighty team of oral history champions, who have taught our ethics-driven methodology widely and helped bring new storytelling projects to life in schools and organizations across [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]