A Coalition-Building Conversation
This coalition building action is born out of a desire to create a more just and equitable world and in direct response to the urgent need for historically undervalued and marginalized communities to deepen their understanding of ONE ANOTHER. You are invited to one of many conversations where we explore the intersecting histories, struggles, experiences, and strategies of Indigenous, Black, and immigrant/refugee lives within our own community through the LENS OF ART.
By naming one’s reality, listening with radical empathy, humanizing the struggles of our neighbors (however distant), and finding common ground, WE CATALYZE CHANGE.
ARTogether is excited to host our first panel with an amazing panel of speakers, facilitated by Patricia Rojas-Zambrano, as we explore topics such as: equity; sense of belonging to a community; multicultural spaces; the role of art / the artist during such times. After hearing from our speakers the audience will be able to ask specific questions to deepen their understanding.
TUESDAY, 20 October 2020
Facilitator: Patricia Rojas-Zambrano is a psychotherapist, activist, artist, and educator. She completed a B.S in Psychology at Universidad de Los Andes in her native Colombia where she worked in community-based programs. Upon relocating to the US to complete graduate studies at CIIS (EXA, 02), she focused her practice towards community mental health settings that serve immigrant and refugee communities. In her clinical practice she has specialized in the treatment of trauma using both Expressive arts and somatic approaches including focusing, movement-based, and mindfulness approaches such as Hakomi. She is the co-founder and Director of Wellness in Action at the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants, a community-based training program for unserved and underserved communities and mental health practitioners of color. Ancestral knowledge, relational wisdom and embodied practices are central to this work. Her passion for education inspired her to pursue doctoral studies in Multicultural and International Education with a special emphasis on decolonizing methodologies and critical pedagogy, which is currently underway at the University of San Francisco. Patricia is also a book artist and painter. Her explorations in this field began with her love of books and her desire to process her everyday life through the arts. She has been dancing and swimming from a young age, and loves urban walks around her Berkeley neighborhoods.
Panelist: Rhatura is a mystic, sage, healer, activist, youth worker, and creative genius with a touch of East Coast and soulful swagger. Rha has been working with youth for over 20 years as a summer school instructor, after school teacher, camp counselor and after school program director at various non-profits serving Oakland communities. In the realms of spirituality and art, Rha is a Jack of all trades who reads tarot, concocts elixirs and cordials, creates spell candles, prescribes crystal remedies, designs sigils, and explores healing with sound, hands and crystals. He is a painter, poet, beat maker, t-shirt designer, jewelry maker, illustrator, writer, actor, crafter and freelance graphic designer. The light of his soul serves as a beacon and his manifestations radiate love, wisdom, spirituality and dope vibes.
Panelist: Shawn Sockie Chizito was born and raised in Uganda and lived in Kenya for close to 4 years as a refugee after fleeing his home country. In June 2018, Sockie moved to America and has lived in Oakland since. He has worked with a number of nonprofits both in Uganda and Kenya, mostly focused on the marginalized members of society. Sockie currently works as a clerk at a grocery store and is going to school to be a registered nurse.
Panelist: Rhummanee Hang is a second generation Khmai American, performance artist, and educator who was born and raised in Oakland, CA. She has used art as education since she was 13, honing her dance, theatre, and spoken word skills as a member of performance and dance companies in Oakland and Sacramento. Rhummanee has had many years of experience in racial equity work, culturally specific programming, youth development, and Southeast Asian anti-deportation organizing and has worked with organizations like World Trust Educational Services, Banteay Srei, and the Center for Empowering Refugees & Immigrants. She has earned a Bachelors Degree in Sociology at UC Davis and a Masters Degree in International & Multicultural Education at the University of San Francisco. Rhummanee is an Aquarian dragon, crafter, and most importantly, Mommy to the amazing toddler, Noreak!
Panelist: Ras K’Dee is from Sonoma County, California, is a Native California Pomo/African musician, community educator, and renowned lyricist, producer, & lead vocalist/keyboardist for Bay Area-based live world hip-hop ensemble, Audiopharmacy. For K’dee, his musical inspiration is deeply rooted
from his experience as a cultural artist. Translating artistically through world music, hip-hop, rhymes and soulful melodies, K’dee invokes the songs and dances from traditional ceremonies of his native people, and tells stories of resistance, healing, community & empowerment that can be understood and felt universally by all people. He has been compared to the likes of Gil Scott Heron, and Marvin Gaye. Ras K’dee’s musical repertoire includes “Street Prison” (2005), which was awarded by East Bay Express as Best Local Album of The Year in 2006, co-production on Audiopharmacy album, “U Forgot About Us” (2009), and producing his first solo-project, “Cloudwriter” (2011), Audiopharmacy’s State of the Heart (2014) and Black Native (2016). K’dee has also had his hand in releasing, producing, and engineering 18 albums by local and international artists and has shared the stage with Arrested Development, Dead Prez, Michael Franti, Pharcyde, X-Clan, Bruno Mars, Goapale and many more who have influenced his own music.