Live from Woodward Career Technical High School, this episode of Women Writing for a Change brings listeners into the worlds of Project Connect, a non-profit helping students experiencing homelessness stay connected to their education, and Young Women Writing for a Change.
Through a generous grant, Dawn Diebold, facilitator and teacher, spent the Spring semester with 20 young women at Woodward, under the guidance of Project Connect Coordinator Leslie Hattemer. Together with host Annette Januzzi Wick, Dawn leads three young women through their writing and their life, as they identify how writing has instilled a sense of confidence and helped them transform.
ShaTawn recites an "I Remember" poem about a devastating relationship, and "Things My Father Taught Me," pieces where writing helped "get things off her chest." In a moving tribute to her mother, ShaTawn writes, "she made me who I am today."
Antonett reflects on her father with an "I Remember" poem, recounting a painful moment in her life, while also celebrating her power through "I Am a Growing Adult." Constantly journaling, Antonett feeds her dreams and understands how writing can lead to the realization of those dreams.
Allena and her words echo the positive upbeat young woman that she is, noting "my writing tells my story" and understands that "its better to write than to take out my anger on people." Her "I Am" and "I Am From" poems show her heart how she "writes what I want to be."
Finally, Dawn and Leslie discuss the challenges facing these young women. "I worry about where people will sleep at night," writes Leslie. Despite their circumstances, within this group, their experiences are universal - coordinator, teacher, and students, all respect the community and solidarity it has provided.
For more on Project Connect, visit Faces without Places
Visit Young Women Writing for a Change for more information on scholarships and programs.
Woodward Technical Career High School is located in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Strong Woman is performed by Lady Precise.