“Indigenous cultures recognize that storytelling can reshape an
individuals’s experience or life story.”
Angeles Arrien, The Fourfold Way
Storytelling is a healing art and groundbreaking work for stroke survivors and those who love us. Telling our stories helps us remember who we were, discover and shape who we are now, and reclaim our voices.
At Keeping Hope Alive, we do this creative healing work as individuals within a collective. In a safe environment, students are guided in how to tell their story, and given the space to explore, practice and craft it. Everyone learns and practices the art of listening.
We are really just ordinary folks in extraordinary circumstances, facing and speaking the truth about living with disability, loss, transformation and love—and reshaping our lives as we create art. This is Keeping Hope Alive.
KHA founder Carol Howard Wooton offers storytelling groups for stroke survivors and their families. Contact Carol for details.
2004 Different Folks with Different Strokes Storytelling Event
In March 2004, with support from the Marin Arts Council, KHA produced Different Folks with Different Strokes: Stories of Letting Go, Love and Resilience - a storytelling program that culminated in a public showcase featuring stroke survivors and family members.
The project goal was to encourage stroke survivors, people normally perceived of as "victims" whose voices are not heard, to find their voices and to creatively express their message in story form. Family caregivers, people who instantly and dramatically reorganize their own lives to support their loved ones, also created stories about caregiving.
On a sunny Sunday afternoon, Warren Wooton, Ed Boyce, Stacey Horton, Cecilia Nunes, Alison Bonds Shapiro and Carol Howard-Wooton presented their stories to a sold-out audience of friends, families and members of the community. Their stories were powerful, deeply moving, hilarious, authentic, heartfelt and profoundly transformational - for the audience and for the performers themselves - as evidenced by the free-flowing tears, hearty laughter and prolonged standing ovation.