"My name is Gwendolene Mugodi and I am a writer and the founder of Paivapo Storytellers, a movement that aims to provide better access to local, good quality literature to the children in Zimbabwe--and eventually beyond. Our work would not be complete without the help of local artists like Abel Zvorufura who I met through the National Gallery of Zimbabwe. As two different artists we spent about a month and a half going back and forth on this book until we got to a place we were both happy with. I look forward to sharing that full book in a few months, but for now here's a little bit about Abel and why he does what he does."
Ready or Not
Hannah Bebbington ’14 is a Starr Fellow working for the A Better World by Design conference.
Today marks the 5-week out date. We launch September 27th, welcoming hundreds of students, entrepreneurs, professors, politicians, scientists, and innovators to Brown and RISD’s campus - whether we are ready or not. We have spent the last 10 months planning each detail, networking in Providence, inviting our newest heroes, and agonizing over email text. There will be no dress rehearsal, only the real deal. There will be sleepless nights over coordinating all presenters’ schedules and moments of panic when we realize we’ve forgotten to order napkins for dinner. But, in the end, we know we will have done everything we can to ensure a smooth and seamless conference. Is that what its all about though?
No, its certainly not. If there is anything I have learned over the past 10 months, it’s that conferences are about people (not silverware), ideas (not goodie bags). While the extra details—the branding, the beautiful exhibits, the great social events—help create an exciting atmosphere, it all boils down to the connections made.
Working with the A Better World by Design planning committee has given me a circle of friends that are talented beyond words. They have built their own cars and launched startups. To plan a conference where we bring many interesting people together in one space is exhilarating. Each meeting reminds me of this: We slave for this community. We spend the anxious moments worrying so that we may create the best space for people. As we get closer and closer to the conference, the details can seem never ending and all important. We must remember, however, why we do what we do. And that is to bring together people, to create a community, and to inspire real action and change.
August 11, 2016
June 13, 2016
Lauren Maunus '19 is starting a bold new venture.
Its goal: To help eliminate food waste and bring healthy, affordable food to "food swamps" in Rhode Island and beyond.
March 15, 2016"If little girls like me were saying Barbie is the pretty one and the brown one is the ugly one, that's a problem."
Yelitsa Jean-Charles studies Illustration at RISD with a a concentration in Gender, Race & Sexuality. She identifies as a visual activist, and believes that artists have a responsibility as society’s image-makers. Her doll company and book series, Healthy Roots, combats internalized racism and colorism by getting to the root of the problem: altering beauty standards and cultviating self-love for young girls through education, diversity, and positive representation.
March 12, 2016An Excerpt
Mina is a Brown-RISD Social Innovation Fellow. She traveled to her home in Iran last summer and brought back a cultural souvenir: the book she wrote, Taste of Culture. She explores Iranian families, streets, stores and the stories and spirit embedded in the recipes of Iranian food. She hopes to start a conversation about the benefit of knowing cuisines of different cultures to connect societies.
This year's class of Brown-RISD Social Innovation Fellows have just begun their yearlong foray into the world of social entrepenuership. Check out their projects here.
December 16, 2015
Ria is a 2015 Social Innovation Fellow and co-founder of No Country for Women (NCFW), an internationally-recognized gender education initiative that aims to combat systemic gender-based discrimination in India. Ria and her co-founder, Shreena Thakore ’16, who grew up in India, were awarded the Projects for Peace fellowship and used this grant to launch the project in May of 2014. NCFW was set up to educate the people in India on gender, rape culture, and misogyny through a series of workshops and initiate informed discussions about social change.
I was inspired by Ria’s story because she was determined to start a conversation about an issue in a country that fights hard to keep such issues silent and hidden. We reflected on Ria’s experiences, her interactions with young people, most of whom had never thought about this obvious form of discrimination before, and her moments of self-doubt and extreme conviction.
October 2, 2015