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Girlfriendism™ H.O.P.E. to Host Virtual Survivor Roundtable In Honor of Sexual Assault Awareness

Girlfriendism™ H.O.P.E. - the non-profit branch of the International Girlfriendism Campaign which stands for Helping Ordinary People Everyday to be extraordinary through the arts and creative expression - invites the community to join them for their second round of ‘HOPE Talks’: Conversations of hope and healing with local survivors of trauma including domestic violence and sexual assault.


This free, virtual event will occur on Wednesday, April 28th 2021 at 7pm via the My Girlfriend’s Closet FaceBook (@mgcstx) page in honor of Denim Day - an international campaign in support of survivors that occurs every April in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Click here to check out our G-HOPE Denim Day Challenge & Giveaway!

Founded by My Girlfriend’s Closet St. Croix - a locally owned boutique in downtown Christiansted - the Girlfriendism™ brand provides services for women in varying industries including fashion, fitness, business, wellness, travel and philanthropy. H.O.P.E. - a newly incorporated domestic non-profit and the philanthropic arm of Girlfriendism™ , is governed by members of the Simmonds Family and led by Director and Founder of Girlfriendism™ , Khnuma Simmonds. According to Khnuma, ‘HOPE Talks is more than just a conversation...it is a revolutionary initiative made possible by survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault who have committed to truth telling, have embraced the overarching mission of Girlfriendism (which is to empower women) and have found the courage to offer hope and healing to our community - particularly other survivors and their families - by sharing their deep and personal journeys. As a fellow survivor and advocate, I have found that one of the greatest healing tools that I can offer myself and others is to use my voice...to hold space for truth telling...and to hold the hands of others along the way. This is what HOPE Talks is for me and our participating survivors - it is the right to be heard and the desire to promote hope and healing for ourselves and our community.’

H.O.P.E. represents a consortium of innovative projects that are created to address individual and community trauma - particularly domestic and sexual violence - through the arts. They are hosting a series of awareness events during the month of April including HOPE Talks in honor of Sexual Assault Awareness Month but also a community engagement project in honor of Child Abuse Prevention Month and in response to the recent cases of child abuse. This project is being hosted in collaboration with the Music In Motion School of Higher Dance Education and according to Founder and Artistic Director, Charlita Schuster, ‘H.O.P.E. and Music in Motion are partnering because we love our community and we love our children. We encourage anyone who knows someone being abused to let them know that you support them and give them some hope that the abuse can stop.’ Special thanks goes out to our Master of Social Work practicum student intern and ‘HOPE Talks’ co-host, Lashonette Schjang; and to our past and upcoming survivors and collaborators for their unwavering commitment to the project and our vision.


Please join H.O.P.E. LIVE during the upcoming HOPE Talks and witness the efforts of this ever growing, locally owned, woman owned, Black owned and survivor-led initiative. To learn more about H.O.P.E. and their initiatives with HOPE Talks, Music In Motion, Create Your Own Reality Initiatives and past events in honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month in 2020, please visit their website at www.girlfriendism.com/g-hope. For more information on how you can get involved or to support the efforts of H.O.P.E., please email girlfriendism@gmail.com or save the dates for the upcoming Girlfriendism™ Retreat from July 30th - August 1st - in honor of National Girlfriend’s Day!

About My Girlfriend’s Closet:

My Girlfriend’s Closet St. Croix is a locally owned, art and fashion boutique providing retail services for women and featuring original art by local artist, El’Roy Simmonds since 2011. It’s mission is to ‘Empower Women through Fashion, Faith and Friendship’ by offering fashions that are made by women, for women - locally and abroad. Since its inception, MGC has engaged in community initiatives affecting women including but not limited to the fashion show fundraiser for the Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center Mammography Center in 2012, the Norma Krieger Island Art Tour in 2015 and the Yvonne A. Galiber Foundation Breast Cancer Exhibit in 2017. MGC was nominated for the 2019 Best Small Business of the Year by the St. Croix Chamber of Commerce and has been featured in the Daily News Women Today Magazine and The Buccaneer St. Croix Concierge Guide. Please follow their events through their social media pages and handles: Facebook and Instagram: @mgcstx and #Girlfriendism.


About GirlfriendismTM H.O.P.E.:

H.O.P.E. is a non profit initiative governed by members of the Simmonds Family. Inspired by the creativity and community advocacy of the family unit, H.O.P.E. stands for Helping Ordinary People Everyday to be extraordinary through the arts and creative expression. It 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. Our vision is to create a culture of healing in community by cultivating hope through the arts.


About Khnuma:

Khnuma is the owner of My Girlfriend's Closet St. Croix, Founder of SoKh Caribbean Dance Fitness, Founder of Girlfriendism™ and Director of H.O.P.E.! Khnuma is a full time entrepreneur since her former role as the Executive Director of the V.I. Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Council (DVSAC). She holds a B.A. in Communications and Dance from Hofstra University and an M.A. in Education Guidance & Counseling from the University of the Virgin Islands - St. Croix Campus. She is currently a PhD candidate at Capella University where she is completing her dissertation on domestic violence and dance in partial fulfillment of the PhD in Advanced Studies in Human Behavior as well as a recent graduate of the Executive Program in Leadership Strategy for Violence & Abuse Prevention at the University of Pennsylvania - Ortner Center on Violence and Abuse.

Event Link:

https://www.facebook.com/events/289398075999086


Archives to Domestic Violence HOPE Talks:

https://www.girlfriendism.com/domestic-violence-awareness


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