Upcoming Events

Inspiration to Action Fair – June 4, 2015

Please join the H/OStowe CenterSCP at the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center’s Inspiration to Action Fair  to be held at the Immanuel Congregational Church, 10 Woodland St., Hartford, on June 4, from 3 to 4 P.M.  H/OSCP will have a table at this free networking fair, where Connecticut activists will share ideas and strategies for social change. High school and college student groups as well as grass roots community and educational organizations will participate.

Following the Fair will be “A  Conversation on Race with Ta-Nehisi Coates” from 4:00 to 5:30 P.M.  Coates, winner of the 2015 Stowe Prize for Writing to Advance Social Justice,  and John Dankosky of WNPR will discuss Coates’ call in the June 2014 Atlantic article “A Case for Reparations” for a national conversation on the troubling, long-standing  consequences of slavery in the U.S.  Audience interaction will be encouraged, and WNPR and the Stowe Center will record the discussion. This event is also open to the public and free. For more information visit The Stowe Center’s website.

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Reading Discussion Group June 17th and July 15th – Flame in the Air: Bilingual Poetry Edition by Vidaluz Meneses

flame in the air webPlease come to a discussion of Flame in the Air: Bilingual Poetry Edition by Vidaluz Meneses, translated and edited by Maria Roof, at the next two lunchtime reading group programs of the Hartford/Ocotal Sister City Project and Hartford Public Library in the Seminar Room of the library, 500 Main St., on Wed., June 17, and Wed., July 15, from 12:30 to 1:30 P.M. Both programs are part of the library’s Bridging Cultures Series.

Meneses is a widely acclaimed and prizewinning Nicaraguan poet, but few of her poems had been translated and published in English before publication of Flame in the Air. In June, we will consider the first two sections of the book. One section comprises conversations with the author about her life in Nicaragua in the revolutionary period and then as part of the new government when she was a leader of the Ministry of Culture. Conversations about her works and literature in Nicaragua make up the second section. In July, we will discuss the last section of the book: her poetry as written in Spanish and translated into English.

Flame in the Air is available through www.casasolaeditores.com, online booksellers, and local bookstores. Bring a lunch if you would like. All are welcome at these free programs.

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The Hartford/Ocotal Sister City Project is a story of two cities reaching out to each other, one in Nicaragua, Central America, the other Connecticut in the United States.  It begins in 1986 when the Hartford Ocotal Sister City Project(HOSCP) was established with the help of the Capitol Region Conference of Churches and moves forward again in 1995 when the Project began providing seed money for a micro-lending program called FUNAFAM, which is based on the Grameen Bank model. Financial support from this program has helped hundreds of Ocotal women start small businesses of their own.

Over a period of 25 years HOSCP has used contributions to help fund the following programs, evolving from direct material aid to self-help initiatives:

  • Material aid shipments in conjunction with the New Haven-Leon SCP
  • Educational events
  • Helping to fund the purchase of an ambulance
  • Helping to fund the clean water project
  • Hurricane Mitch relief
  • FUNAFAM, a microcredit program based on the Grameen Bank model. Loaning small amounts of money to individuals starting small businesses
  • Health education programs in outlying areas surrounding Ocotal

Many of the founders of the HOSCP are still active in the work. The sister-city commitment does not go out of fashion, nor does it cease to inspire those involved.

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