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The H.O.P.E. Survivor Project

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Check out our Founder, Dr. K, with our girlfriend Laura Forbes during her debut of Live With Laura - a production of the Women in Business Caribbean Chapter and the VI Consortium. Tune in HERE to view the interview and learn more about HOPE and our services available for survivors through the Emancipation and Empowerment through Entrepreneurship and Embodiment Project - Funded by HHS, SCESA, and Ujima. Then...SCAN the QR Code to Register for FREE Services for Survivors!

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H.O.P.E. is the philanthropic arm of Girlfriendism that is helping ordinary people everyday to be extraordinary through the arts and creative expression. 


Our mission is to foster social impact and create social justice by utilizing the arts to promote social justice, healing and empowerment for individuals, families and the community.

$10.4M Awarded to Culturally-Specific Organizations to Address Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault | The Administration for Children and Families (


July 3rd, 2023 marks 175th Emancipation Celebration for the Virgin Islands of the United States. In honor of this historical event, Girlfriendism's philanthropic branch, H.O.P.E. Incorporated (Helping Ordinary People Everyday) has successfully applied for and been awarded a grant to support its newest project: The HOPE Survivor Project: The Art of
Emancipation & Empowerment through Embodiment & Entrepreneurship.

Check Out The Grant Announcement HERE!

Ujima Talks - It's Carnival: Celebrating Culture, Community, and Black Women’s Bodily Autonomy, Watch On Demand

Join Ujima Inc., as we celebrate Black culture and celebration through the Carnival with Dr. Khnuma Simmonds! We'll discuss the wide variety of practices and styles of Carnival that have been inspired by spiritual and cultural elements, as well as discuss how the liberation of Black Women’s bodies has been a long-standing practice within Carnival. We will hold space to recognize the artistic and historical value of the parade.

Thank You for supporting our H.O.P.E. initiative
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What is the Reclaiming Faces Survivor Exhibit? 

Inspired by Chalana Brown's 'Claiming Spaces: The African Story of the Sugar Mill' that launched on V.I. Emancipation Day of 2021, Reclaiming Faces is a continuation of anti-oppression, pro-healing and Afro-Caribbean emancipation work that is presented in the form of a photo exhibit curated by and for survivors of domestic violence, sexual violence and child abuse in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The exhibit launch will also serve as a ceremony of gratitude and reveal of the research 'Caribbean Women, Music & Dance: Self-Expression and Intimate Partner Violence' - a dissertation study by Dr. Khnuma Simmonds that investigated the perceived impact of Caribbean music and dance on the self-expression of Caribbean women in the U.S. Virgin Islands who have recovered from intimate partner violence. Intentionally launching on April 1st during Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month in the year 2023 - the 175th Year of Emancipation in the U.S. Virgin Islands - this exhibit will unveil in the spirit of Sankofa (remembering the past to make progress in the future) as survivors share visual stories of healing from the past in hopes of reclaiming faces of empowerment for the future.

Why was it hosted in April?

April is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month. Likewise, while Domestic Violence Awareness Month is in October, the exhibit recognizes that most survivors of domestic violence have also experienced some form of sexual violence which is another form of domestic violence. The exhibit will launched on April 1st, 2023 and ran through April 15th, 2023. As a mobile project, the Reclaiming Faces Exhibit will be shown again on St. Thomas in October 2024. Requests for the exhibit to be hosted in a city near you and/or to collaborate,  please email

Thank You for supporting our H.O.P.E. initiative

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Spotlight Article by the Virgin Islands Consortium 

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Mission & Vision

Mission Statement:

The H.O.P.E. Initiative aims to foster social impact and create social change by utilizing the arts to promote social justice, healing and empowerment for individuals, families and the community. 

Vision Statement:

Our vision is to create a culture of healing in community by cultivating hope through the arts.  

H.O.P.E. Believes

H.O.P.E. recognizes every social problem as a personal and collective opportunity to be bold, courageous and resilient. We know that the arts are grounded in creativity and innovation and therefore, have the power to nurture the qualities needed to overcome trauma, foster healing and create a culture that challenges fear because it embraces hope.

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● We know the power of kindness.
● We trust that most people are good and will do good when given opportunities to do so.
● We believe in the ability to change for good and for better.
● We believe that we have all that we need to do good in the world.
● We believe that creativity is the medium through which a higher power communicates 
with humanity for the greater good of humanity.
● We believe that God is creative and creativity is a gift from God to humankind. 
(Creativity is of God) ● We believe that creativity is the key to all things possible.
● We believe that ordinary people do extraordinary things everyday.
● We believe success comes with a balance of mind-fullness and heart-fullness. 

Value Proposition

H.O.P.E. is central to empowerment work, since without hope, neither individuals nor communities can begin the struggle to change ​ (Freire 1998, Empowerment Theory Research). Like Freire, The H.O.P.E. Initiative - ​ Helping Ordinary People Everyday - seeks to effectuate change in communities by creating safe spaces for people to change themselves through the healing arts and creative expression. H.O.P.E. seeks to offer a light of hope for a fresh change - one which is creative, cultural and relevant. Lead by survivors who are thriving in the arts and immersed in the community, H.O.P.E. will utilize the power of communication arts, performing arts, culinary arts and visual arts to promote healing, spark action and uphold the power of hope.

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Value Statement

H.O.P.E. values the arts as one of God’s greatest creations for truth telling, truth seeking and truth bearers. We value the extraordinary contributions of ordinary people who dare to heal through creativity while inspiring others to do the same in the process.  We value human touch and human connection and value art as a medium for these ‘ordinary needs’ that make an extraordinary difference for humanity. H.O.P.E. values culture - specifically Virgin Islands and Caribbean culture - and aims to incorporate facets of this identity in our work.  Lastly, H.O.P.E. recognizes that trauma is found in all forms of oppression and oppressive events which includes but is not limited to domestic and sexual violence, racism and natural disasters.  Our work is all encompassing of these issues and will be addressed through the various fine art forms: communication arts, performing arts, culinary arts and visual arts.

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