In this course, we will creatively explore themes of migration, belonging, identity, inherited intergenerational trauma, intersectionality and more.
This will be a safer space for people of colour in 'development' and 'aid' spaces to embark on their own journey towards healing. We will use our individual and collective lived experiences to implore, comfort, confront, soothe, and understand using poetry and storytelling as our embodied practice.
Each session will hold a space for reflection and discussion either in small groups or as a collective. This course is an opportunity to push boundaries and set your inner creative free. This space will hold you as you work through and weave together the layers of your poetry.
The course will take place over 4 sessions:
Session one 10th Nov: Planting seeds
In this introductory session, we will take time to learn about each other and to uncover what we each seek to gain/uncover/share in this course. Nikita will introduce the 6-step process of writing spoken word poetry and will share elements of her spoken word poetry ‘Tales of Migration and some new work and will guide participants in personal reflections.
Session two 24th Nov: The rooting
In session two, Nikita will guide participants in creating a foundation for their spoken word poetry. Using prompts to creatively mind map, reflect and start the writing process. Participants will be invited to use their senses to mindfully narrate their lived experiences into ideas, images, sentences and stanzas.
Session three 8th Dec: Cafe Blossom
In session three, participants will be invited to workshop their poetry in Nikita’s trendy virtual ‘Cafe Blossom’. So grab your Chai and get ready to edit your poetry. Participants will be partnered up to provide feedback and collective reflective on each other's poetry. You will also be taught how to perform your poetry.
Session four 15th Dec: A fruitful harvest
The final session will be a showcase where participants share their poetry with the group. We welcome reflections and host a sharing circle for participants to discuss the poetry they have written and heard and to openly share about their experiences.
What will you need to participate in this course?
- Chai (or anything else you want)
- Lots of paper
- Pens/pencils/colouring pens
Why a course for people of colour?
Healing Solidarity exists to be part of rethinking, reimagining, and reshaping the future – to promote healing from the past, generate new narratives, and establish new ways of working within the sectors normally known as 'international development' and 'aid'.
Together, we are inviting people and organisations on a learning journey to avoid replication of the harm that has been done in and by our sector. This means supporting people to tackle some deeply challenging issues – both personally and professionally – which we see as long-term work and which we hope will happen in partnership with many others.
Within this, we recognise the need for multi-racial spaces and leadership as we try to model this in Healing Solidarity overall. Also, we recognise that dedicated spaces for Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour can provide the opportunity for healing, support, mirroring and affirmation, and that this must happen away from the white gaze.
For the purposes of our work and access to this course, we include within people of colour Black, Indigenous, and all those identifying as a person of colour. We know that people of colour are not a homogeneous group but also recognise the value of spaces dedicated to those for who have been oppressed by the burden of racism and the ways in which that is manifest in our organisations.
Neither of the white members of our Advisory Circle, Jennifer Lentfer nor Mary Ann Clements, will have access to these spaces or to recordings of them
Who is facilitating this course?
Nikita Yasmin Shah is an international development professional who has provided high-quality research, analysis, client and project management across a portfolio of work. She is also the founder of Hyphen Poetry and a co-founder of The Colonial Hangover Project. Nikita has a background in migration, modern slavery, decoloniality, human rights, climate change and gender related issues. Nikita holds an MA in Global Governance from University of Waterloo, Balsillie School of International Affairs and a BA (Hons) in Politics from the University of Warwick where she Co-founded The Colonial Hangover Project. With over 15 years of experience as a Bollywood dancer and over 10 years as a dance teacher, Nikita has bridged her practice of art and professional work to develop a performative decolonial lens. Nikita has a curiosity using art to both analyse and present findings on complex global issues in development. In 2015, Nikita wrote her Master’s thesis ‘Threads of Migration: A Decolonial Unravelling of British Kenyan Asian Identity, Belonging and Citizenship’. As part of this body of work, Nikita produced a spoken word piece ‘Tales of Migration’ using the overarching image of pleating a sari to narrate the experiences of three generations of women with migration and identity.
When will the sessions take place?
Tuesday 10th November, Tuesday 24th November, Tuesday 8th December and Tuesday 15th December 5-6.30 pm GMT / 1-2.30pm EST
How do I sign up?
If you would like to join these sessions please click on the links below which will take you to a form where you can fill out your details and make a payment.
What is the cost of joining?
The fees are structured to honor the time and talents of the facilitators and to ensure the value of spaces for healing and reflection not often provided within our workplaces. The cost for this series of four sessions is £40. This is a subsidised rate supported by the other offering we have and our work with organsiations.
If you would like an invoice for this amount please indicate that you need one when you fill out the joining form. You will still need to click the link below to fill out the joining form. Details for how you can pay using Paypal or your card are given on the form you access by clicking the link below.
If this fee is beyond your means, we can consider a doscount based on your circumstances - again please indicate this when you fill out the form.
What if I miss a session?
Before signing up, make sure that you can make all of the dates because there will be no recordings made of them. Please note that no refunds will be given after the start of the practice group.
Of course, we understand that sometimes life unavoidably prevents you from attending, and in these circumstances, a summary will be provided.