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A Time You Found Hope

Please join us on Saturday, January 12th, 12pm-2pm at Tabula Rasa Bar to support GirlForward.

Hosted by Aisha Muharrar
Readings by Erica Chidi Cohen, Kate Johnston , Marisa Matarazzo, & Lilliam Rivera about a time they found hope.

We are in the midst of the biggest refugee crisis the world has ever seen. Over 60 million people worldwide have been forced to flee their homes. In conflict, girls are especially vulnerable to violence, isolation, and being kept out of school.

Girls who receive resettlement in the United States face huge challenges: poverty, language barrier, limited or disrupted education, isolation, and trauma. But when girls succeed, everyone benefits. That's where GirlForward comes in.

This amazing organization has built a community of support dedicated to creating and enhancing opportunities for girls who have been displaced by conflict and persecution.

GirlForward supports girls through three core programs:

  • A Mentoring Program that pairs girls with mentors to engage in "4W" activities (Wellness, Wisdom, Wallet and World).

  • An Education Program that provides a space for girls to simultaneously build their English skills and succeed academically, while exploring their identities and learning about the world around them.

  • A Safe Spaces Program that provides safe spaces for girls to explore their identities, connect with other girls, and access the resources they need.

Meet Our Readers

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Erica Chidi Cohen is a doula, author and co-founder of LOOM. LOOM provides empowered education from periods to parenting. Her reproductive health career began in San Francisco, working with pregnant inmates as a volunteer doula within the prison system. From there, she went on to build a thriving for-profit doula and health education practice, while continuing to work with organizations that served marginalized communities. She’s obsessed with helping people cultivate body literacy and the tools to advocate for their reproductive health and wellbeing. Her book Nurture: A Modern Guide to Pregnancy, Birth and Early Motherhoodhas guided thousands of people in their transition from pregnancy to parenthood. She lives in Los Angeles and currently teaches and see clients at LOOM, focusing on periods, sex positivity, fertility, and pregnancy.

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Kate Johnston’s practice melds the forces of design, identity, and organizational storytelling. In 2013, she co-founded the Women’s Center for Creative Work (WCCW), a a nonprofit organization whose mission is to cultivate LA’s feminist creative communities & practices. She also serves as principal of Radical Rules graphic design studio and has collaborated on projects with The Huntington Library, LA County Arts Commission, Hammer Museum, East of Borneo, Armory Center for the Arts, and Pants Magazine. Kate’s work has been featured on AIGA Eye on Design, Typotalks,, and KCET Artbound. She serves as ComArts faculty at Otis College of Art and Design and has most recently lectured at Typo Berlin, Komsfaack University Stockholm, CalArts, UCLA, and Pomona College. Kate holds an MFA in Graphic Design from CalArts and a BA in Classics from Pitzer College. She lives and works in Los Angeles.

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Marisa Matarazzo is the author of DRENCHED: Stories of Love and Other Deliriums. Her work has been published in Hobart, Fivechapters, Faultline, Unstuck and other literary journals. She is an Assistant Professor in the MFA Writing Program at Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles and is currently at work on a novel.

Lilliam Rivera is an award-winning writer and author of the young adult novels Dealing in Dreams, forthcoming from Simon & Schuster on March 5, 2019, and The Education of Margot Sanchez, available now in bookstores everywhere. Originally from the Bronx, New York, Lilliam now lives in Los Angeles.

100% of your ticket prices will support this nonprofit. Please join us.

Earlier Event: November 29
A Time You Were the Only Woman in the Room
Later Event: March 28
A Time You Changed Course