THE WRITERS FOR MIGRANT JUSTICE READING AND FUNDRAISER HAS BEEN CANCELED DUE TO THE IMPENDING APPROACH OF HURRICANE DORIAN ON SOUTHEASTERN NC.
Writing has the power to move people and change minds. Such is the belief behind Writers for Migrant Justice, a one-night-only reading event that gathers some of the area’s most talented writers and poets in hopes of raising funds for a good cause. On Wednesday, September 4 at 7 p.m., Bourgie Nights will host six local scribes, including journalist Dana Sachs, Whiting Award winner Hannah Dela Cruz Abrams, and UNCW professors (and published authors) Sayantani Dasgupta and Melody Moezzi. The intention is to raise at least $500 while protesting the inhumane treatment of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border.
The Wilmington reading is one of more than 40 like-minded gatherings in cities across the U.S. Organized by migrant and first generation poets Christopher Soto, Javier Zamora, Jan-Henry Gray, and Anni Liu, the events will serve as fundraisers for the nonprofit Immigrant Families Together (IFT), which provides support to those affected by a Trump administration immigration policy that has separated migrant families and confined thousands of children to border detention camps. Already, IFT volunteers have worked to pay bonds for parents in detention and to reunite them with their children.
Poet Melissa Crowe organized the Wilmington event alongside Abrams and Moezzi. She says she recognized an immediate opportunity for our writing community to take part. “I knew there would be a groundswell of support here because I know so many people who are looking for some way to help,” she says. For Crowe, who also teaches poetry and coordinates the MFA program at UNCW, the connections between the written word and humanitarianism are obvious. “Writers can share information—they can get the word out—but they can also in real ways recalibrate the emotional lives of those who read or listen to them. We need to be able to feel, to feel for each other, in order to make the right choices for our communities, and writers can help us stay alive and alert both intellectually and emotionally.”
In addition to taking donations at the door, Writers for Migrant Justice is also accepting donations via its GoFundMe through the day of the event. All proceeds go to IFT.