An interview with Mohammed Dini, executive director of the African Diaspora Institute, founder of Portland Forward and former candidate for state representative. Mohammed talks about his experience moving to Maine at age 13 and learning to identify himself as a Mainer. He introduces us to the Somali concept of furfurnaan, which means openness [Read more…]
An interview with journalist and Harvard Nieman fellow, Jeneen Interlandi about her father’s bi-polar disorder. Jeneen describes the way that her father’s illness went under the radar as alcoholism for most of her childhood. She reports that in his blue collar neighborhood, alcoholism was [Read more…]
An interview with playwright, Cathy Plourde, founder of Add Verb productions about her new play, Major Medical Breakthrough. Cathy tells the story of writing a play to inspire health care providers to screen their patients for domestic violence. She gave sobering statistics about the high numbers of women and some men, who are being abused who see their doctors during the abuse and are never asked about it. Indeed only 10-19% of doctors report that they screen their patients routinely for domestic violence. Cathy stressed that where there is domestic violence, there is also likely to be sexual assault, something that often goes unasked about. She cites the ACE study to show that the more trauma in a person’s life, the more physical health problems they will have, and unless our doctors and nurses ask their patients, the cause of many illnesses will be missed. She gave a thoughtful description of why providers are hesitant to ask, but encouraged health workers to trust that asking the question, providing support and access to resources can make a tremendous difference.
An interview with storyteller, Laura Simms about the power of stories to remind us of what is good inside us. Laura describes the way that stories take the listener on a unique journey where each character is a part of us, and we live through the story as if our lives depended on it. Laura talks about her work as a narrative therapist in Haiti after the earthquake. She uses stories to remind people of experiences of joy, and also to remember shared stories that nourish their communities and traditions. Finally Laura describes ways to help individuals transform painful memories into stories without agenda.
The inner Experience of Working with the Homeless: An interview with Street minister Pastor Mair Honan about her work with the homeless in Portland. [Read more…]