United Nations Events in New York – The are open to the public, and YOU and I will be there!

UN womens empowerment graphic

Each year we go to the United Nations to bring Intentional Creativity and be a part of the conversion. This year we are so excited to be a part of two panels.  We hope you can join us, and they will be followed by an afternoon event luncheon and red thread circle. The theme this year is Women’s Empowerment and its link to sustainable development. We are also having a painting workshop in New York, you can learn about it here,

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United Nations Commission on the Status of Women EVENTS

CSW60: Art, Poetry, Film for Resilience, Empowerment, Bonding:
Recharging our Advocacy

March 16, 2016 – 8:30 am
Church Center United Nations
10th Floor, Room 777,  United Nations Plaza, NYC

FREE and open to the public, please join us! Women’s United Nations Report Network
Moderated by Shiloh Sophia McCloud (details below)

Red Thread Circle and luncheon for community following. Location will be provided at the venue.

Transforming the Experience of Trauma into the Experience of Empowerment

March 24, 2016 – 8:30 am
SA – Salvation Army (SA)
221 E.52nd St. Auditorium, NYC

Intuitive Art Movie trailer featuring Rachel Bavis, Chris Zydel, Laura Hollick, Pixie Lighthorse, Flora Bowley, and the Intentional Creativity Foundation Co-Founder, Shiloh Sophia McCloud and Color of Woman teachers.

FREE and open to the public, please join us! This is a very special talk and screening sharing the work that women intuitive painters are doing around the world with hundreds of thousands of creative beings.

Red Thread Circle and luncheon for the community following. Location will be provided at the venue.

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MARCH 16 Details:
Distinguished Panelists

*Mrs. Shiloh Sophia McCloud – Director, Intentional Creativity Movement – Renowned artist, poet and teacher of women grassroots to high level, for strength and discovery, and healing, through arts and poetry education and intuitive painting.
*Ms. Shannon Thompson – Shakti Rising – Successful tools and work through the arts and culture with women and girls going through addiction and recovery.
*Ms. Carmen Baraka – Instructor of global native women’s wisdom, consciousness, activism through native traditional practices, arts, ceremonies.
*Ms. Patty Melnice – Tough Angels Founder, bring arts and culture plus strength mechanisms to protect women and girls from rape in developing countries.
*Ms. Lois A. Herman – Coordinator WUNRN, Women’s UN Report Network
*Ms. Lucy Mathews Heegaard – Music & Film on Women’s Health – “One Small Step”.

Projected Benefits and Outcomes

This panel is focused on empowering those who are serving from inside of institutions. We know that women who work with women both personally and in foundations have an essential role in the fulfillment and preparation of the SDGs. This experiential media rich panel brings together speakers and change agents to establish methods to empower women to be a part of delivering the goals that will impact the future of human rights.

These goals are being defined by people informing the organizations, instead of the organizations informing the people. The way in which the delivery of ‘services’ to those in need is offered needs to be discussed, because those doing the providing need to come from a space of empowerment instead of authority or pity or power over. How do we empower the providers, institutions and NGO’s while working on SDG to empower the clients? Models for shared empowerment will be discussed and explored.

Panel Deliverables

  • Panelists will address some aspects of the SDG: Goals 3, 5, 8 &16.
  • Tools for empowerment will be shared with those who serve others – to bring back into their communities.
  • First hand inspiring examples of the use of story for empowerment using poetry, film, art and education.
  • Hand outs on how the use of storytelling and circle can impact trauma and recovery – a 50 page storytelling template and circle format will be provided to attendees.
  • How a simple use of ritual in the classrooms can be used to establish trust and communication.
  • Use of personal storytelling in art and word in social services.
  • Poetry in higher education as a tool to train the trainers.
  • Experiential circles and storytelling during the presentation.

Speaker Bios

Shannon Thompson, Founder of Shakti Rising working for over twenty years with women and girls through addiction and recovery. Exploring the impact of the Shakti Model The 7 pillars of the Shakti Rising model are: Trauma-Informed, Women-Centered, Holistic, Expressive-Arts-Based, Community-Based, Sustainable, Leadership-Oriented. Shakti has an 80% success rate with a population dealing with multiple addictions, co-existing mental and physical health issues, histories of traumatic occurrences, and prior treatment failures. http://shaktirising.org/

Patty Melnice, Tough Angels Founder working with women in Africa Tough Angels emerged after Patricia Melnice volunteered for six months in South Africa alongside an organization that rescued children who had been raped. She began sending journal updates about her experiences to several friends. One of them posted the updates on a blog, which became the emergence of the Tough Angels website you are viewing now. Patricia quit her much-loved job as a visual stylist with Neiman Marcus, put her belongings in storage, and traveled alone to Africa in 2009. Her writings can be viewed on the Journal page.

During this first trip, she assisted on the front lines in any way that was called upon. From point of rescue to the final court proceedings, Patricia worked extensively with the child victims, the police, Child Protective Services, the hospitals and the judicial system to address what has become an epidemic problem in Africa. The youngest recipient of care was a four-month old infant that eventually died from her rape injuries. Many of these atrocities can be blamed on a tribal myth that expects a cure and/or purification from AIDS can be obtained by having sex with a virgin child.

While the rape cases Patricia worked on were incomprehensible and savagely painful, she was awed by the capacity of these women and children to still see beauty and grace in a world that had seemingly slighted them in so many ways. She discovered their ability to love, laugh, and live in a state of honor and appreciation for their existence was extraordinary given their lifetimes of slavery, poverty, and oppression. Their praise for the sky, the air they breathe, and the reverent sisterhood they clung to between each other teaches a powerful lesson about gratitude and the strength and courage available when we are linked. These women and children were Tough Angels, courageously strong and inspiring. Patricia tried to capture what she witnessed in the photographs which you can view throughout the Tough Angels site. Prior to Tough Angels and for more than 30 years, Patricia has been actively involved with organizations focused on issues concerning the well-being, protection and empowerment of women and children.

While Patricia is a graduate from the Art Institute with a degree in fashion, her professional background has largely been in Emergency Services, which began at age 16, dispatching for the local police and State Patrol. This launched countless pathways in which to function in emergency situations including: working for a major metropolitan fire department, being appointed to the Command Post for disaster relief and the relocation of Hurricane Katrina victims in Colorado, and completing a six month tour of duty on the Antarctica Fire Department in the Communication’s Center which supports the National Science Foundation. Patricia played an integral role in the development of the Fire Academy at Red Rocks Community College and subsequently became an instructor in the Fire Science program. Melnice was a trained volunteer with CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) where she advocated for children in court. In addition, she has earned the title of “Cuddler”, a volunteer position in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Presbyterian/St. Lukes Hospital. http://toughangels.org/who-we-are/

Carmen Baraka, Spirit Warrior Carmen is of Apache and Peruvian descent, having learned spirit walking and medicine from her two grandmothers. She has been running women’s circles and ceremony all of her life, teaching women and girls to raise their consciousness and cause transformation. She teaches worldwide, bringing her knowledge and activism to her work combined with traditional and non-traditional native wisdom. She has been a core faculty member at the Color of Woman School since 2011, where women are being trained to teach intentional creativity.

Ms. Lois A. Herman – Power Point on Arts & Culture Addressing Gender Stereotypes and Violence Against Women Overview: The Power of Story and Tools for Resilience Empowerment for women and girls through the mediums of personal storytelling, poetry as activism, educational film and healing circles. How to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) through empowering women and girls to deliver on the goals through their own gifts and personal experiences. How what they have been through, for example, victim turned activist, refugee turned teacher, can be their greatest resource. How storytelling can encourage and empower those who are the intended recipients of the goals – to be a part of achieving the goals themselves. It is no secret that those in need of services cannot wait for services to be delivered, and that goals are much more attainable if those in need are a part of creating the solution. Inherent in the word sustainability is the idea it can be created and supported for a duration of time – not by institutions only, but by the people whose needs are being addressed. Compassionate informed education is an essential ingredient for those working woman-to-woman to bring about sustainable change.

Lucy Mathews Heegard: I was born in New York City, grew up in Alabama, and have lived most of my adult life in Minnesota (much to my surprise; where does the time go?). Places in between have included Dayton, Ohio, Washington, D.C., Hanover, New Hampshire, and Nairobi, Kenya. Whenever possible, I like to laugh, though I am not at all opposed to crying.

I was a history major at Dartmouth College, after which I worked in environmental advocacy for brief stints at The World Wildlife Fund and the United Nations Environment Program, and went to graduate school for a Master’s degree at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. After grad school, I worked on staff and later as a consultant for a non-profit organization in the Twin Cities raising funds from corporations and foundations for affordable housing. Few things give as good practice at focusing your written messages clearly than requesting large sums of money from big donors for a worthy cause.
I consider myself lucky to have been surrounded by great storytellers all my life. In my own storytelling, I explore ways to merge photographs, video, and sounds with spoken and written narratives to try to amplify the emotional connections of the stories I choose to share. If a story doesn’t make me either laugh or cry, it’s probably not one I am interested in telling.

Shiloh Sophia McCloud: “I believe the right to tell one’s own story is a basic human right that establishes trust, communication and healing. For transformation to happen at a global level we need to change the hearts and minds of the institutions and educators working directly with those who are in need.” Shiloh Sophia is the founder of the Red Thread Nation, a global Intentional Creativity Movement serving women and girls worldwide through revolutionary education.

Her organizations serve upwards of over 1000 women a month both online and in person in transformation their trauma and personal stories into empowerment and possibility. A professional artist and published author for over twenty years her physical school and gallery for women’s work is located in the San Francisco Bay Area which also broadcasts training across four continents via their livestreaming education. One of her primary commitments is to create jobs for women including stay at home moms and elders. She has written articles on art and activism for WNN, and has spoken on panels at the United Nations CSW in 2013 and 2015.

She teaches in global Phd programs at university on art as sacred practice as well as sustainable business development for women. She studied with Sue Hoya Sellars, Master Artist who studied under Lenore Thomas Straus, an artist who worked with the Roosevelts on the New Deal. This lineage of art and consciousness is now being passed onto teachers from her Teacher Training program with over 200 women teachers worldwide. She is currently completing two books, one volume of poetry representing over 20 years of poems as well as Way of the Red Thread, a book on leading circles. http://www.redthreadnation.com http://www.shilohsophiastudios.com