Education and Schools, Free News Articles, NonProfit and Charities

Eat Your Words 2021: A Fundraising Event for Chicago Youth

CHICAGO, Ill. -- We are proud to announce 826CHI's biggest fundraising event of the year! Socially conscious Chicagoans, literary enthusiasts, education supporters, and members of the business community will gather at the in Bridgeport for "Eat Your Words 2021."

The goal of the event is to raise enough money to ensure 750 students have equitable access to tuition-free, high-quality arts and literacy education. We believe that leaps in learning can be made through the power of writing and individualized attention to creativity. Every $458 raised allows one student to write their future for the 2021-2022 school year.

Eat Your Words will feature a storytelling mission to help 826CHI students, Chicago's finest cuisine from Chef Kelley Davidson of Betty Lou's, signature cocktails from Ahmed Williams of Swift and Sons, Artwork from Amanda K. Rivera, our 826CHI interactive game designed by sisters Ashlyn & Alicia Sparrow, and a performance Jay Illa, the official DJ of the Chicago Bears!

Enter Eat Your Words as a storyteller and you'll have no trouble blending in with the crowd. This is your mission, please come out to support a great cause and have a blast. More details below!

WHEN: Thursday, October 14, 2021 - 6-7:30 p.m. or 8:30 to 9:30 p.m.

WHERE: Zhou B Art Center - 1029 W 35th ST

QUOTE: "We are excited to be at the forefront of helping student writers capture their voice by helping them with their creative writing skills. The Eat Your Words event bring so much of what we do together into one experience. I am excited about how we "gamified" the event and how falls in line with the 826CHI Mission. This will be the non-profit event of the year! Don't miss it," said Jennifer Steele, Executive Director 826CHI.

NOTE: All agents will be required to wear a mask regardless of vaccination status, all the better to help you remain disguised! This event includes two 90-minute timed entries to ensure all of our agents can complete their missions with the venue at 50% capacity or less. 826CHI will have a Covid Compliance Officer on site to help ensure all safety protocols across the event are met and followed.


826CHI is a nonprofit writing tutoring and publishing center that supports students ages 6-18 in their creative and expository writing, and supports teachers in inspiring their students to write. All students enter 826CHI a storyteller and leave a published author. We prioritize our services for students, families, and communities most impacted by systemic disinvestment in high quality arts and literacy education. Our programs also prioritize students who identify as BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, neurodiverse, and English Language Learners.

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Business, Education and Schools, Free News Articles

New Writing Program Mobilizes Writers and Therapists to Help Health Care Professionals

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- New Directions in Writing, an offshoot of the Washington Baltimore Center for Psychoanalysis, announces "The Things They Carry," a series of free writing workshops for health care workers and first responders, designed to help them face the deep trauma of their experiences with the corona virus pandemic. The first workshop will launch on April 13, 2021 and are staffed by therapists and writers from across the country who have come together specifically to help health care workers. They include: Jessica Anya Blau, Sarah Boxer, Kate Daniels, Aimee Molloy, Aria Beth Sloss and Valerie Tripp.

A recent survey of thousands of health workers by the Yale School of Public Health, recently published in the journal PLOS One, found that nearly one quarter of all participants showed signs of PTSD, and almost half had probable alcohol use disorder.

The Things They Carry workshops - - will pair experienced writers with therapists skilled at working with people experiencing PTSD. If the title sounds familiar, that's intentional: it honors Tim O'Brien, the author of "The Things They Carried," a ground-breaking meditation on the Vietnam War, memory, and the redemptive power of storytelling.

The workshops are the brainchild of Kerry L. Malawista, Ph.D., a psychotherapist in private practice in Potomac, Maryland, and McLean, Virginia. Malawista is a co-chair of New Directions, which offers a postgraduate training program for clinicians, academics and writers who want to bring modern psychoanalytic perspectives to their work.

"I see several frontline health care workers in therapy," Malawista said. "From them, I hear about the ghosts of the COVID deaths they carry, the patients they have treated, those who were lost to the virus and those who still haunt them. Like soldiers returning from war, they cannot close their eyes to all they have witnessed - the smells, sights and sounds of people who died while in their care. And sadly, like the soldiers that O'Brien memorialized, the ghosts often pursue them in their dreams.... Along with talk therapy, writing provides an effective pathway to process traumatic memory."

Participants will learn a technique called "writing for resilience," in which writing prompts will be offered to encourage them to explore their COVID experiences, helping them to delve into their meaning. For the present, workshops will be held via Zoom.

Following the writing sessions, participants will have an opportunity to share what they have written, listen to other stories, respond to the group's writings, and explore their meaning in writing and conversation.

"Writing in the company of others has special benefits," Malawista said. "To have one's experiences witnessed and validated by other writers has been shown to relieve isolation and create a sense of solidarity.... Participants will have the opportunity to reflect on the life stories they have heard in the course of their work, as well as on the ways they can keep themselves calm and strong."

For more information contact Kerry Malawista, Ph.D., at

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