Artist: Hana Rafee
We are so glad you are interested in participating in Gulabi Stories: A South Asian Healing Initiative -- where written and oral storytelling will be used to address and unpack topics and themes that are unspoken, invisible, and often a stigma in our South Asian diaspora and immigrant/ refugee communities.
This 1-year multidisciplinary art project is created, led and curated by Meghna Bhat, Ph.D., one of the 45 grant recipients of the Seeding Creativity Art Grant in Sacramento, CA. Eligible participants were invited to be a part of virtual and in-person storytelling workshops or interviews to learn, strengthen or share their stories about healing or health.
The stories we gather from this project are gradually being shared on our website page "Our Stories" (with the participants' consent) where visitors can come to read and listen to our stories to help create healing and awareness, and to destigmatize sensitive topics. If you are interested in contributing or simply finding out more about future opportunities, we would love to have you complete this short Google form.
With your beautiful contributions, we will build on the existing work being done by leaders, advocates, storytellers, survivors, community members, and organizations working with the larger South Asian diasporas. At the same time, we hope to create a uniquely safe, inclusive, and intentional space to have these conversations, thus building empathy and bridging the gaps across generations, one story at a time! The objective is to diversify and shift the narratives about one’s health, healing, body, and identity journey for South Asian immigrants, refugees, and asylum-seekers.
Surviving, healing, and thriving look different for everyone. Some of us have grown up in families and communities witnessing conflicts, grief and loss, unhealthy or abusive relationships, and intergenerational trauma. While some may have experienced moments of feeling seen, feeling happiness, recovering, thriving, finding support, and healing at our own pace. This storytelling project attempts to capture the breadth of our South Asian experiences with our bodies, health, relationships, and healing.
Despite the inroads made by many clear, South Asian, diasporic voices, we do have an elephant in the room. The conversations around all kinds of health- physical/ mental/ sexual/ reproductive as well as having knowledge and autonomy over our body/ intimacy/ relationships are often hushed due to a culture of silence and shame around these topics. Culturally sensitive education about these topics is often missing. These stories are further shaped by our identities, transitions, and struggles to thrive in the South Asian diaspora. Creating space for these stories and voices will not only help address the root causes leading to gender, racial, health, and immigrant injustice, but also promote the urgency of prevention education in our communities. We want to help shift the culture and create a long-term sustainable social change through our stories!
If you have had moments from your life and stories to share around these themes, this storytelling project sees you and believes you. We encourage you to be a part of this conversation!
The Gulabi Stories: A South Asian Healing Initiative has been funded by the SEEDING CREATIVITY Individual Artist Grant. The Office of Arts & Culture (OAC) in the City of Sacramento received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) as part of its American Rescue Plan (ARP) grant program, to subgrant to communities responding to the negative economic impacts and public health emergencies of the COVID-19 pandemic. This grant program supports 45 artists with grants to create and/or present new work in the county during the grant period.