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UCLA-Writers’ Program Is Open To The Public

A special online writing workshop through UCLA-Extension’s Writers’ Program is open to the general public and has just two spaces left in its upcoming course Storytelling for Social Justice.

Taught by experienced writer and educator Sehba Sarwar through this prestigious writing program workshop, the course is open to anyone who wants to write and share their story with the world. Age and location are not barriers.

“The bigotry and hatred that dominates public discourse makes it imperative for social justice activists and civil rights-minded citizens to contribute their own narratives,” says Sarwar, a longtime journalist, published author, artist, poet and award-winning curator of art productions who designed the course for UCLA Extension’s Writers’ Program.

Her ten-week workshop, April 7 – June 15, 2021, aims to help participants find their voices and learn to tell compelling stories.

“Fresh, well-told narratives can change the world”, believes Sarwar. At a time of rising movements like Black Lives Matter, MeToo, DACA/refugee and immigrant rights, LGBTQ rights, and more, she encourages students to uncover stories that are not included in history textbooks.

Storytelling for Social Justice provides participants ways to access pathways to explore personal history, family narratives, and stories amidst their communities. Students will read and produce compelling creative nonfiction—memoir, essays, literary journalism, blogging, audio/video recording, live performance, and more—to share with larger audiences.

Integral to the creation of new work will be revision, peer feedback, and literary work that serves as models. By the end of the course, students will begin a narrative in a format of their choice to develop into a completed project and share with the larger community.

In 2000, Sarwar founded Voices Breaking Boundaries (VBB), a social justice arts organization in Houston awarded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Through VBB, she initiated projects like Borderlines to explore parallel issues between North America and South Asia.

She has taught workshops at universities, colleges, community centers, and high schools and guided participants to find ways to share their stories and find outlets to publish their work.

Born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan in a home filled with artists and activists, Sarwar resides in Los Angeles where she writes, teaches, and creates art. Her papers are archived at the University of Houston’s library.

For more information, visit her website

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Naya Daur