Come see me as a Keynote speaker at SEXx Interactive!
I recently had the opportunity to travel to London, England to speak at the Women of the World (WOW) Festival at Southbank Center. I was honored to be invited and I had a BLAST. It was so awesome to connect with so many of my fans and readers in London as well as meet other activists and fighters for gender equality.
Many thanks to the wonderful Hannah Poole of the Guardian who made it happen. I owe her so much!
On March 7th, I was interviewed on BBC Radio’s Woman’s hour live at the WOW festival at Southbank. I spoke about women being worthy of dignity and respect and how empowering it is to speak authentically about your own experience.
I also had the opportunity to speak about some of the work that I do to make the world a better place for women and girls and to advocate for the rights of marginalized and oppressed people. I was a keynote speaker and the room was packed!! I was so honored and humbled. Speaking about #YouOKSis and efforts to reduce sexual violence against women in another country was amazing. And I met Dr. Shirley Tate, the GAWDESS.
I recently had the honor of attending a pop-up shop in NYC that highlighted the work of the Nomi Network, a “Nomi Network is a nonprofit that creates economic opportunities for survivors and women at risk of human trafficking”, per the website. The party was given by Party For A Purpose NY, a group devoted to philanthropy in the NYC area.
Over the years, I’ve read quite a bit about human trafficking around the world and the statistics are staggering. It affects all genders, races, ethnicities, and spans the globe. In the United States, there have been reports of trafficking in every single state. According to the presentation, trafficking is a $150B/year industry affecting 27M people globally.
There are important conversations about empowering consenting, adult sex workers and ending human trafficking. There are some who believe anti-trafficking work can sometimes infringe upon the agency of sex workers and leads to increased shaming, stigma, and even violence against sex workers. There are some who also point out that trafficking affects people of color and the poor more, so “checking privilege” is important when engaging in the sex work vs. trafficking discussions.
I follow a lot of sex workers on social media. Some are fierce advocates for sex workers’ rights. Some are just trying to get work. I also follow people who work hard to protect innocent youth from falling prey to traffickers and those who tirelessly educate and advocate about the horrible conditions of trafficking around the world. Wherever you position yourself in the debate, I believe we can all agree that NO ONE should be be manipulated, coerced, or outright forced into engaging in any type of activity, be it sex work or other forms of labor, against their will and against what affirms their humanity and supports their agency and human rights.
The Nomi Network wants to help women and girls, specifically, who are affected by this modern form of slavery:
Nomi Network’s mission is to create economic opportunities for survivors and women at risk of human trafficking by equipping them with leadership, entrepreneurship, and production skills to become financially independent. When you were young, did you ever skip a stone across water? If you did, you will remember the spreading effect of the ripples that one stone created in the water. The dictionary defines a ripple effect as “a situation in which one event causes a series of other events to happen; the continuing and spreading results of an event or action experienced far beyond its immediate location.” There are many ways in which the ripple effect can take place. At Nomi, we believe our ripple effect begins with the survivors that we train and partner with. We have seen that by helping one woman we are in turn helping her family as well as her community. – Source
I appreciate the empowerment of creating sustainable economic opportunity. There are many ways to help people and I find that methods that include helping people find ways to take care of themselves are incredibly effective and have powerful effects on our larger society. I was happy to support the network and these women with the purchase of a few bags, which were available for sale at the party and can be ordered online
I encourage everyone to check out the Nomi Network and I want to signal boost by giving away one of the bags I purchased. Contest Rules:
One winner will be randomly selected from those who share at least one of the following:
I join @feministajones in supporting @noninetwork, an org that helps victims of #humantrafficking. NoniNetwork.org #WomensLives
Help survivors of #humantrafficking. Join @feministajones in supporting @noninetwork. #BuyHerBagNotHerBody #WomensLives
Help @noninetwork empower survivors of #humantrafficking. Visit NoniNetwork.org & #BuyHerBagNotHerBody cc @feministajones #WomensLives
Facebook (share this blog and add):
#WomensLives Visit FeministaJones.com and learn more about how you can support the Noni Network, an organization devoted to economically empowering survivors of human trafficking. #BuyHerBagNotHerBody
One winner will receive this signature bag, which is valued at $30, but is invaluable in the ways in which it helps bring awareness and support to this organization, named Small Charity of the Year. It collapses into a little pouch and it is truly a “statement” piece.
I was honored to be invited to speak at my alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania. For the Feminism/s series, hosted by the Kelly Writers House, I shared my beginnings as a writer, activist, and Black feminist woman, and how I’ve committed my life to helping others as a writer, social worker, and activist.
Check out my interview with the Daily Pennsylvanian
Photo: Khristian Monterroso