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Nikki Bell, a graduate of "The Stories We Tell" workshop and a member of World Without Expolitation. | Photo: Lynn Savarese
Your story is your power. Are you using it?

When The Voices and Faces Project launched "The Stories We Tell," North America's first two-day testimonial writing program, we did so with a simple belief: that the stories of those who have lived through or witnessed violence can challenge and change the world.

During a moment in our national life when politicians and pundits too often fail to confront the root causes of gender-based violence, injustice, and inequality, our "Stories We Tell" writers are using their testimonies to change minds and hearts. There is nothing beautiful about injustice, but there is something deeply beautiful about the women and girls who are speaking out about it. Their testimonies make us pause, feel, and think. At The Voices and Faces Project, our hope is that the writing being created during "The Stories We Tell" will also compel readers to act.
Read writing workshop alum
Nikki Bell’s reflections

on what taking part in “The Stories We Tell” meant to her.

To apply for a workshop or to support "The Stories We Tell" Scholarship Fund, email
Our 2018 “Stories We Tell” Schedule
(subject to addition and modification)

Nairobi, Kenya
June 4-8

In partnership with RefuSHE
(formerly Heshima Kenya)
and Manaaki Foundation

Milwaukee, WI
September 22-23

(applications due 8/30)
In partnership with Lotus Legal Clinic and Wisconsin Humanities Council

Villanova, PA
October 27-28

(applications due 10/7)
In partnership with Villanova University

Chicago, IL
Fall 2018 (date TBD)

In partnership with World Without Exploitation and CounterQuo

Chicago, IL
Fall 2018 (date TBD)

Words = Change: A writing workshop for Chicago-area youth (ages 15 - 17)

San Diego, CA
Fall/Winter 2018-19 (date TBD)

The Voices & Faces Project | Things We Haven't Said
A powerful anthology, powered by “Stories We Tell” workshop alums.
Larena Patrick
Larena Patrick, an alum of "The Stories We Tell" and a featured writer in "Things We Haven't Said." | Photo: Joe Greto
A powerful new anthology of writing about surviving gender-based violence, Things We Haven't Said — edited by Erin Moulton — features poems, letters, vignettes, and stories of hope and possibility. We love this anthology for any number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that so many "Stories We Tell" alums are featured in this much-needed volume. One such alum is Larena Patrick, a graduate of our 2017 San Diego "Stories We Tell" writing workshop. "I am utterly grateful that this book is now in existence," notes Larena. "For so long survivors have been encouraged or forced to be silent because of shame. It wasn't until I had a copy of it in my hands and could read it that I knew that yes, absolutely, this book is vital." Special thanks to every "Stories We Tell" alum who submitted work to the editor. A big shout out to Janet Goldblatt Holmes for encouraging so many of our writers to take part. And our congratulations to The Voices and Faces Project's "Stories We Tell" alums who contributed to the anthology: Imani Capri, Jennifer Carmer-Hall, Joan Clare, Janet Goldblatt Holmes, Laura H. Kelly, Larena Patrick, Misha Kamau James Tyler, and Aster Lee.
The Voices & Faces Project | The Stories We Tell
“Stories We Tell” alum Michelle Kuiper is changing the world—starting with Kentucky!
Michelle L. Kuiper
Michelle L. Kuiper, graduate of The Voices and Faces Project's "The Stories We Tell" testimonial writing workshop.
Michelle L. Kuiper, a graduate of The Voices and Faces Project's "Stories We Tell" testimonial writing workshop hosted at the YWCA in Evanston, IL, received the Special Courage Award at the National Crime Victims' Service Awards Ceremony on April 13, 2018, in Washington, D.C. Michelle, a member of the Kentucky Association of Sexual Assault Programs Speaker's Bureau, and co-chair of the Kentucky Attorney General Survivor Council, was recognized for her work on Senate Bill 109, which changed the legal definition of rape in KY, as well as her efforts to pass a law that mandates the testing and resubmission of backlogged rape kits in Indiana. A frequent speaker at schools and community groups, Michelle is a "Stories We Tell" alum who is using her personal story to create policy change. Thank you, Michelle, for your vision and your courage!
The Voices & Faces Project | Writing Workshop Alum
A new anthology and a beautiful voice: Writing workshop alum Sharisse Tracey is a featured writer in Roxane Gay’s Not That Bad.
Sharisse Tracey
Sharisse Tracey, an alum of our Voices and Faces Project writing program.
Voices and Faces Project writing workshop alum Sharisse Tracey has a must-read essay that will be featured in the forthcoming anthology, Not That Bad: Dispatches From Rape Culture (Harper Collins, May 2018), edited by Roxane Gay. "After learning of the call for submissions, I dedicated weeks to solely focusing on that one piece which ended up being a collage of things I'd written or wanted to write about the complexities of trauma," Tracy, a graduate of The New School, explained. "Although in fairness, I've been mentally composing 'Picture Perfect' (Sharisse's contribution to the anthology) for the past 34 years as a sexual assault survivor."

An actor and writer whose beautiful, powerful voice deeply moved us during The Voices and Faces Project's 2017 writing workshop at Aperture Gallery in NYC, Sharisse notes that our "Stories We Tell" writing program also moved and changed her. "My writing workshop experience with The Voices and Faces Project was life altering," says Sharisse. "So much so that I feel I need more time to process as to accurately express my feelings. This project has, is, and will continue to affect change in everyone it touches." Find out more about Sharisse here. And make sure to check out Roxanne Gay's vital new essay collection when it comes out later this month.
The Voices & Faces Project | Speakers Bureau Lecture Series
48 states and four continents; Our Voices and Faces Project Speakers Bureau.
Karen Carroll
Karen Carroll, a member of our speaking team. | Photo: Patricia Evans
We founded The Voices and Faces Project to bring the names, faces, and stories of survivors of sexual violence and trafficking to the attention of the public. No program has helped us do that more effectively than our workshop and speakers bureau, which has taken members of our team to four continents and 48 US states. The survivors who share their stories through our Voices and Faces Project lecture series do not do so because it is healing, although it can be, but because it is necessary in a world that too often fails to grasp the scope and scale of sexual violence. Our newest lecture, "Our Stories Are Our Power," recently debuted at the Illinois Holocaust Museum and will next travel to Nairobi, Kenya. To find our more about our speakers and workshop series, email
We can't do it without you:
Support our “Stories We Tell” Scholarship Fund.
Scholarship Fund
Find out more about giving the gift of change by donating to our workshop scholarship fund. Every $500 raised provides a full two-day scholarship for a survivor waiting to take part in our program.
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