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 Courtesy of Georgia Southern University

STATESBORO — An open-mic reading event entitled "Our Mothers' Gardens," hosted by Georgia Southern University's Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies department and the National Organization of Women, is planned for Thursday and Saturday

Intended to help raise awareness and funds for those affected by gender violence, the event is the first showing of the successor to the previous fundraising series "The Vagina Monologues," which ran a similar goal for fifteen years before it began to fail due to low response and volunteer rate, Lisa Costello, WGSS director, said.

"Our Mothers' Gardens" is free to attend, but guests are encouraged to donate, for all proceedings will go to support the Teal House, a non-profit organization that works to help the victims of sexual assault and provides a variety of services to those in need, including medical exams, child advocacy, emotional support, and education.

Costello also said "Our Mothers' Gardens" is from an essay title by Alice Walker, and it speaks to generations of women, people of color and the LGBTQ community.

"[It speaks to] a lot of things, all at once, and so we really wanted to reference back to that really important work to have people be thinking about what they want to say and to who they're saying it," Costello said.

Costello hopes that the new series being a "show up and read" type of event will make it more inclusive and inviting than its predecessor, encouraging anyone to show up and read. In addition, she aims to not only make the event a yearly occurrence, but hopefully introduce several more like it.

"Our Mothers' Gardens" will take place on Feb. 13 in the IT Building Room 1004 at 6 p.m. and on Feb. 15 in GS's City Campus at 58 East Main Street, Room 1004 at 6 p.m. To sign up for a reading, go to https://tinyurl.com/MothersGardens.

Davis Cobb, The George-Anne News Reporter, gaeditor@georgiasouthern.edu

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