The Commission on Racial Justice & Reconciliation selected by the Alabama Poet Laureate to be the administrator of a grant to promote poetry within the diocese.
The Alabama Poetry Delegation is a leadership and service initiative which seeks to engage and support poets across the state of Alabama. This project, created by Alabama Poet Laureate Ashley M. Jones, is supported by the Academy of American Poets and the Mellon Foundation.
Angelica Howard, a member of the Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd in Mobile has been selected as the Alabama Poetry Delegate for Region 4. In such capacity, she will be partnering with the Episcopal Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast’s Commission on Racial Justice & Reconciliation’s Committee on Visual & Performing Arts in promoting poetry within the diocese.
Ms. Howard has been an educator since 2014 in Mobile, having served mostly at low income schools in marginalized communities where mostly students of color attend. Her goal has always been to inspire her students to create visions for themselves so that they are prepared to exceed all expectations of them and thrive as viable members of society. Ms. Howard was recently chosen as Teacher of the Year at her high school.
Ms. Howard states: “When I started working in marginalized schools and communities, I wanted to find a way to connect with my students that they could relate to. I chose a poem, “A Rose that Grew from Concrete” by Tupac Shakur and then I remixed it. I challenged my students to do the same. From then on, I chose renowned poets and musicians to inspire this process so that my students could model and emulate. This became a hit in my classrooms…My students have been given an outlet to express some of their deepest insecurities, fears, and dreams on paper. It has definitely been a healing journey for them all.” Ms. Howard looks forward to tripling her efforts through the partnership and support of the Poetry Delegation.
Ms. Howard added: “I would like to see all young people become inspired by poetry in a way that allows them to express themselves and heal trauma; some known and unknown. I would like to see every student receive a poetry journal and be given the tools to address their troubles and manifest their dreams. There is without a doubt a need for this in my region as many young people struggle with economic crises and carry generational trauma. I recognize the need and I have already begun to create solutions. I am grateful that with the awarding of this grant, I will now be able to continue my work in partnership with the Commission on Racial Justice & Reconciliation.”