Hear what the teaching artists and participants have to say about their experience with Her Words. Video by Erico Rovayo.
Join Her Words
Registration for our Fall 2023 program is now open! Our session will begin on October 11th and will end in early June 2024.
Teen girls and gender-expansive youth in Morristown who attend Middle and High School are welcome to join Her Words. Students will meet on Wednesdays from 5–7pm at the Morristown Neighborhood House (12 Flagler Street, Morristown) from October through June. Refreshments will be provided at each session.
About the Program
Her Words is a creative arts and mentoring program that offers free workshops on the arts, expressive writing, and wellness for underserved teen girls and gender-expansive youth ages 11-18, many of whom are from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. Her Words empowers youth to share their stories, shape their future, and create change in their lives and communities. The program helps participants develop the 21st Century skills necessary to combat antisocial and self-destructive behaviors as well as challenging negative influences in their lives such as racial and gender issues; unstable and/or unsupportive family structures; trauma; poverty; and exposure to family or community violence. By focusing on the arts, education, mentoring, and socialization, participants build English language literacy and critical/creative thinking skills, and improve important social and emotional skills including communication, problem solving, collaboration, and perseverance. The weekly two-hour after-school workshops provide an ongoing, reliable, and safe forum where participants examine issues facing them, share experiences, feelings and insights, and work through a range of concerns that impact them by reading, writing, creating artwork, and performing in a culminating event. These activities also help to strengthen the youths’ autonomy, sense of purpose, social competence, and self-esteem.
Her Words supports the academic, social, and emotional growth of underserved youth in our community by enhancing learning through literary activities, drama, and a wide range of creative arts, thus strengthening the participants’ capacity to adopt healthy behaviors and positively transform their lives.
Her Words Past Session:
Summer 2023 Recap
On August 18, 2023, we held the culminating event for our Summer 2023 Her Words program at The Morristown Neighborhood House. The girls introduced and performed their collaborative play, Diamond’s Redemption.
During their 8-week creative process, the girls expressed common themes that they witness and experience in their everyday lives. They consisted of bullying, poverty, girl empowerment, and the overall navigation of middle school as a teenage girl.
Inspired by these themes, the girls collaboratively wrote a beautiful story about a 13-year-old girl named Diamond. Diamond had an appreciation for art and especially loved pottery. Her family experienced financial challenges which resulted in her being bullied. The story concluded with Diamond and her bully becoming friends and an added bonus of her winning an art competition, where she ended up giving her prize money to her mom to help support her family.
Spring 2023 Recap
On June 29, 2023, we held the culminating event for our Spring 2023 Her Words program at The Morristown Neighborhood House. At the performance, the girls shared a collaborative writing piece along with artwork they felt led to create. The art pieces captured their personalities and complemented what they wrote and spoke about.
One of the two leaders of the program, Cyndall Brice said, “Adia and I were so proud of the girls because they showed confidence and self-awareness through their work. Over the 10 weeks, the students grew tremendously and discovered how special they are and that their voices truly matter. We couldn’t have asked for a better group to work with for this occasion.”
Summer 2022 Recap Video
2020-2021 School Year
Click here to download the zine, “What Will My Verse Be?” which features flash fiction, poetry, flash memoir and monologues written by teen members of Her Words during the 2020-2021 school year.
Click here to hear the young women of Her Words read selections from their creative writing.
Her Words is a program of Morris Arts in partnership with the Morris School District in Morristown, New Jersey. Our staff is Adia Harris, Program Director and Lead Teaching Artist and Cyndall Brice, Program Administrator.