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Before I let go, I want to introduce to you the reason you all have been introduced to me in the first place. In 2016, I worked with Hope Dector and @lewispants in partnership with the Barnard Center for Research on Women and Project NIA to create ‘Don’t Be A Bystander” in preparation for the uptick in hate motivated violence related to the 2016 election.   Project NIA is a grassroots organization that works to end the arrest, detention, and incarceration of children and young adults by promoting restorative justice practices, and is founded and directed by community organizer, educator, and curator Mariame Kaba. Mariame’s work focuses on ending violence, dismantling the prison industrial complex, transforming justice, and supporting youth leadership development. Mariame has also co-founded other organizations, including the Chicago Freedom School, the Chicago Taskforce on Violence against Girls and Young Women, the Chicago Alliance to Free Marissa Alexander, and the Rogers Park Young Women’s Action Team. Mariame is an acknowledged expert on the topic of youth incarceration, with recent appearances on NBC News, the Guardian, and Vice. She is also available to consult or facilitate workshops on topics such as juvenile justice, youth leadership development, the prison industrial complex, curriculum development and evaluation, and research support. Mariame has received numerous honors and awards (mariamekaba.com/honors) for her work over the years, including the 2019 Morton Deutsch Award for Social Justice, the 2019 Visionary Voice Award, and the Essence Magazine 2018 #Woke100. Mariame is currently a researcher in residence on race, gender, sexuality, and criminalization at the Social Justice Institute of the Barnard Center for Research on Women. After more than 20 years of living and organizing in Chicago, she moved back to her hometown of New York City in 2016. Here is Mariame Kaba in her own words, and check the link in bio on more ways to engage her work. Toodles! - @aarynnlang #MissLangPresents
Thank you. ⁣ ⁣ If you only knew the year I had before this experience, if you only knew the heartache I held and nursed like my own child, if you only knew the loneliness and pain that I’ve had to stand in to be here today you would be as in awe as I am now. I truly believe in the power of transformation like never before. ⁣ ⁣ We do not have to be bound to that which has sought to end us, we can make a different decision every single time. We have so much more power than the state would ever allow us to understand. It’s why they keep us angry, they keep us hungry, and they keep us blind to the ways that this way of life has only served their power and not the power of the people. ⁣ ⁣ I’m no fool, and won’t take my Instagram posts as earth-bending or shattering, but understanding that I have the power to influence people to action is something I shall never take lightly again. My request? Is that you never question your power again either. Know that where you sit, stand, or lie is the power of a force so much greater than oppression would ever let you allow yourself to know. Do not be tricked into being an accomplice against yourself, against this earth. MAKE A DECISION TO CHANGE THE WORLD TODAY. ⁣ ⁣ Do not join this fight to save me, join this fight to save yourself. There are many ways to die and turning a blind eye to the church of what’s happening now will surely kill your soul. There is so much beauty to behold in this world, don’t you think we all deserve? Let’s prove it. Let’s be so intolerant of hate, violence, and oppression that they decide to retire. Let’s be so bold in our convictions that we don’t even need to think before we stand up for our own. ⁣ ⁣ We have so much to learn from those who have taken to the streets in protest, of those who are willing to risk their lives to usher in a world they may never see. Be like the protesters, be like the trouble makers, never shut up about justice, never shut up about love. ⁣ ⁣ Thank you for restoring my dedication to humanity. Thank you for reminding me of my power. I am Aaryn Lang, signing out! Until next time. #blackpower #misslangpresents
“I am often asked, why I chose to become a counselor. The truth is I did not choose this path, it chose me. I always thought I would become a teacher. I loved the idea of learning something useful and sharing that with others. I did not know I would be given the opportunity to help people realize where they are now is not where they are destined to stay. There is a way out, but you must go through to get there. ⁣ ⁣ Healing is a process. You did not get here overnight, and you will not heal overnight. But know that you can heal.⁣ ⁣ I believe in a holistic approach to counseling. That means healing the whole person and not just the parts. I will assist you in the work of becoming unstuck. Because often we are in the middle of our dis-ease before we recognize we are there. I offer an eclectic set of counseling modalities from cognitive(mind), to emotive(emotions/feelings), to somatic(body). Because all parts of us are affected when our mental health is affected. I also offer EMDR therapy.⁣ ⁣ I work with individuals, couples and families dealing with single incident and complex trauma, struggling with addiction, depression, anxiety, relational and work-related stress including compassion fatigue, grief and life transitions. I work with diverse populations to include LGBTQ and older adults.⁣ ⁣ I have a license in Professional Counseling and an Independent License in Chemical Dependency Counseling. I have worked in community mental health, in public health, state government and private practice.⁣ ⁣ I look forward to assisting you in doing your work.”⁣ ⁣ -Donna Lang #MissLangPresents @aarynnlang @getcenteredwellness