GenerationJOY hosts first TALK event in NYC
On November 15, 2016, Joyful Heart Foundation’s GenerationJOY committee hosted its first TALK event. GenerationJOY is a group of next generation advocates committed to using their voices and resources to support Joyful Heart’s vision of a world free from sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse.
GenerationJOY partnered with 2nd Time Around, a high-end consignment boutique chain, to create a pop-up shop to benefit the Joyful Heart Foundation. The event brought together GenerationJOY committee members and supporters in New York City to shop and learn more about ways people can support survivors when they disclose their stories.
The event featured a curated selection of consigned items from Joyful Heart’s Founder & President, Mariska Hargitay, along with other exclusive pieces. Guests were also encouraged to bring in designer clothing, handbags, and accessories to donate for consignment to support Joyful Heart’s work.
Committee member Jessica Fleisher opened the event and introduced Sophia Schrager, one of GenerationJOY’s founders, to speak about how the committee was formed. Joyful Heart’s Managing Director, Sarah Haacke Byrd, then spoke about the organization’s mission and accomplishments, and introduced the main speaker, Zoe Flowers.
Zoe Flowers is a former member of the Healing team at Joyful Heart with over 16 years experience working in the field of domestic and sexual violence. Her book,From Ashes To Angel’s Dust: A Journey Through Womanhood, is a collection of interviews with women of color who are survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Flowers’ work inspired a series of moving performances called ASHES, which combines poetry, monologues, and movement to tell stories of women silenced by violence, oppression, homophobia, or shame. Flowers performed at The White House’s United State of Women Summit, where guests had the opportunity to engage in a discussion about how to best support survivors.
At GenerationJOY’s TALK event, Flowers spoke about the ways to approach survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse. She focused on providing guests with tools and tips to empathically and effectively help someone who feels safe enough to disclose their experience, and emphasized the importance of understanding where the survivor is in their healing process.
As the TALK concluded, guests were asked to commit to four things:
- TALK - Start a conversation. Talk to at least one person about these issues in the next month.
- LISTEN - Be a survivor’s community and listen to their story. Never judge or blame someone for being a victim of abuse.
- SPEAK UP - Against a culture that blames victims or excuses those who cause harm.
- GIVE - The scarcity around these issues is one of the heaviest burdens we carry.