By Clarisa James

December 17, 2013, 6:00 am

 

Who does a young girl turn to answer the questions in her soul she is afraid to say aloud?

What if there is no maternal voice in her immediate family or community for her to turn to for answers?

DIVAS (Digital Interactive Visual Arts Sciences) for Social Justice is developing a free mobile app to fill this void. For the past six years, DIVAS for Social Justice has trained youth in underserved communities to use technology for social change. One of their staple programs is, “Imaging Ourselves”, explores how women of color are portrayed in the media and teaches girls the basics of digital photography and Adobe Photoshop.

This past fall the organization was inspired to start development of the Mobile App, “My Sister’s Keeper”. Documentary Photographer/Multimedia Developer, Murray Cox has been volunteering with DIVAS since October 2013 and is assisting in the development of app.

The youth of DIVAS for Social Justice have designed the content of the mobile app by deciding which questions young girls ask themselves, and photographing each other to be featured in the app. Dara Cooper, Food Justice Organizer and the Director of the Food and Fitness Partnership of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation has been instrumental in organizing the first group of women to participate in answering questions the young girls ask themselves.

Participants have included: Anthonine Pierre of The Brooklyn Movement Center, Kady Ferguson of The Brooklyn Food Coalition, Teaching Artist, Beatrice_Anderson , Afia Bediako of the Food and Fitness Partnership , and Lydia Temples of Bedford Stuyvesant. DIVAS is looking for more participants to answer questions on camera.

Youth members Nia , Bahiyah, Amia, and Cavani filmed all the interviews with the women in the community providing loving answers to the questions the girls asked about body image, hair, and relationships.

DIVAS has launched afundraising campaign in order to launch the Mobile App in March in honor of Womens’ History Month. The funds raised will help affordable provide coding classes, pay app development fees so they youth can further develop the My Sister’s Keeper App, which will be free to girls around the world. You can contribute at:

http://igg.me/at/sisterskeeper/x/1018282

Dara Cooper and the DIVAS after filming Cooper's loving affirmations for My Sister's Keeper

Dara Cooper and the DIVAS after filming Cooper’s loving affirmations for My Sister’s Keeper


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About The Author

Clarisa James is the Executive Director/Co-Founder of DIVAS for Social Justice, an arts/technology based organization that encourages youth in underserved communities to use technology for social change. Ms. James holds an MFA from the Integrated Media Arts Program at Hunter College, City University of New York. Visit her website at www.divasforsocialjustice.org

Clarisa James is the Executive Director/Co-Founder of DIVAS for Social Justice, an arts/technology based organization that encourages youth in underserved communities to use technology for social change. Ms. James holds an MFA from the Integrated Media Arts Program at Hunter College, City University of New York. Visit her website at www.divasforsocialjustice.org

3 Responses

  1. Dara Cooper

    This work is so inspiring! I hope everyone contributes and makes this the enormous success it deserves to be!

    Reply

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