Mission & Values

Mission

Our mission is to create safe and inspiring learning opportunities for individuals who wish to pursue the art of writing as a tool for growth and change.

We believe in the power of writing to connect people to the deeper parts of themselves and to one another.   We believe that creative and conscious communities hold the key to positive transformation in our world.

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Women Writing for (a) Change was founded in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1991 by Mary Pierce Brosmer. For “herstory” and broader context for our affiliate work, please visit WomenWriting.org.

The Bloomington affiliate, established by Beth Lodge-Rigal in 2004, carries on a tradition of creative writing programs that empower the individual voice. Ours is a non-competitive environment where writers of all abilities are welcome. Our classes, or circles, as we call them, provide an attentive setting in which every voice is honored, nurtured, and celebrated.

All of our programs provide structure for both generative/exploratory writing and the development of projects over time. We teach deep listening and ways of responding that support each writer’s authority to ask for what they need. We also help people expand their capacity for giving the kind of feedback that has been asked for.

We welcome published writers, and writers working toward publication, in our circles. That said, our focus is on process. We believe writing and sharing in a non-competitive space enhances our art as well as our creative lives.

Our writing circles for women and girls adhere to an inclusive definition of “woman” and “female”/”girl” and “young woman”.  As such, our women’s circles welcome any female-identifying person. We are committed to making sure any woman, including, but not limited to, trans women and non-binary women feel welcome within our community.

Our co-ed circles welcome any individual seeking safe space for their writing no matter how they identify on the gender spectrum. We welcome racial, ethnic, and religious diversity and believe in the rich possibility of honoring one another’s stories and creative lives.

Values

Our values inform all of our programs and provide the foundation of our approach with everyone we serve both in house and in our community and outreach collaborations.

Photo 3We are a culture of welcome, hospitality and accessibility.

We value the presumption of good will and confidentiality.

We honor boundaries and agreements that support:

  • A non-judgmental approach to individual learning and creative exploration.
  • Processes to promote the interconnectedness of people.
  • The inner authority of individuals to ask for what they need when they need it.

We value the needs of the individual and the needs of the community.

We aspire to create safe space where diversely held viewpoints can be expressed without fear of reprisal or diminishment.

We value responsible and sustainable fiscal practices and communications.

Participant Reflections

“This class continues to stimulate new creative forays for me — and that influence continues to grow. Evidence that this really does work.”

Photo 2“I count among my blessings our evenings of extravagant support and growth. Our community of passionate women is a source of wisdom and peace in a world of confusing madness and cold, indifferent assaults on grace and beauty. If the bringing together of such varied spirits can create such a glorious sound, then I can trust the future again. Thanks to all of you.”

I did not foresee the potential that writing my personal stories would create for my personal healing. My writing has allowed an opening of old wounds, and therefore the possibility of dealing with and healing from them.”

“My experience of this semester has been like the most fruitful of writing sessions. I think I know what I’m starting out with and I end up in some delightfully unexpected other place. Learning to let go of the belief that I have a plan — that’s the challenge in both my writing and my life.”

Other Women Writing for (a) Change Programs

Cincinnati, Ohio, Diane Debevec
Indianapolis, Indiana, Mindy Weaver Flask
Burlington, Vermont, Sarah Bartlett
Jacksonville, Florida, Jennifer Wolfe
Dayton, Ohio, Lisa Hess

WWf(a)C Bloomington in the Media

Women Spin a Common Thread from the Inside, Out, WFIU ArtsDesk, December 2014
Women Excel Bloomington Awards Ceremony, Creative Director Beth Lodge-Rigal, honoree (video, start at 24:40), July 2013
Community Minute Radio Spot, WFIU Radio, May 2013
The Happy Benefits To Writing Their Lives, WFIU ArtsDesk, August 2011
Wise words of girls create inspirational week at summer camp, Herald Times, July 30 2009
Getting ‘unstuck’, Herald Times, June 1 2008
I hope they take their journals with them wherever they go, Community Column, Herald Times, March 2007