A large part of Wildflower’s purpose is to tell stories through art. This can be through writing, sewing, painting, songwriting, etc. This is the framework for future enterprises that will be established. This will let women around the world tell their story and passion for art and culture at the same time as creating social change for women’s rights. Maybe in time I will develop a teaching framework for the best ways for someone to tell their story or telling someone else’s story for effective advocacy for social change. I learned from my director while interning for Bread for the World in Chicago that some of the best advocacy is storytelling. The focus of Bread for the World is food justice for healthy and sustainable world. They do excellent research on food justice issues. During and after this internship I began to take this storytelling advocacy idea with me to D.C. where I led a group of undergraduate students to advocate on Capitol Hill for food justice. I have traveled to D.C. a few other times to meet with senators and staff in D.C. to advocate for issues for marginalized individuals. I also do all of this with a faith background. I am true fan of the teaching of being a voice for the voiceless.
For instance, Proverbs 31:8-10 says,
“Speak out on behalf of the voiceless,
and for the rights of all who are vulnerable.[a]
9 Speak out in order to judge with righteousness
and to defend the needy and the poor.”
After doing this and learning many stories of a variety of individuals I have realized one question, why can’t those who fall into the category of marginalization based on global systems tell their own stories? So, this is where I am now with Wildflower and the enterprises that will be established. I want to empower women to tell their stories the good and the bad. If someone is ready to tell their story I want to provide a space where they can. Is this in D.C.? Or is this only with them and me? Either way is okay. Because social change is happening both ways. It is happening when a woman is brave and tells her story to our president. This is because there is chance for privileged individuals to hear another point of view to change systems. Social change is also happening when a woman is brave and tells her story to me through an empowerment counseling session. This is because she can be empower herself while doing this. A newly empowered woman’s personality will shine to all she encounters. There are also special moments of random acts of kindness that happen from one on one encounters. Can all of this create systemic change to lift the voices of those who are marginalized? I think so, with effective story-telling from many different voices.
So talking about all of this I think it is time to fully tell the my story and Wildflower’s rich history. This will come in a several weeks of blog writing. My story is my inspiration to build Wildflower with my twin sister Kaitlyn to really serve women and offer brave spaces.
Kacie G. Hopkins
Living life to inspire women and be an advocate for women's rights.