Women Empowering Women

Torri Johnson | September 10th, 2014

Sherri Denese Jackson FoundationAt the beginning of this year, I facilitated the January monthly Women Empowering Women (WE) session. The topic I decided was “Shame”. I had recently read some works by the infamous sociologist, Brene Brown and I stumbled across an article where she was discussing shame and the six different types of people not to share your shame story with. In short, the article revealed some very useful information. We all have some dark areas of our past that may or may not make us feel shameful. This article in detail, advised us of the folks who are just not worthy of hearing our shame story.

Ever since coordinating that session back in January and studying the material that I have been learning in my classes at Guilford College, as well as reading other self-help books on psychological health, spirituality, empowerment and various other subjects. I decided that I really loved every minute of those two hours I was sharing words of encouragement and planting seeds of empowerment in the lives of other women, all very different from me; different ages, backgrounds and socioeconomic status. From there with the approval of my mother, Portia Shipman, executive director of the Sherri Denese Jackson Foundation (SDJF), I was declared the SDJF Women’s Empowerment Coordinator. This opportunity fit perfectly with my life’s vision, which is to help others along their journey to have more happy, meaningful, and purposeful lives.

Since January, I have delivered a different power-packed workshop every month. Some of the topics include: Living With No Regrets: How to Regret Proof Your Life; The Power of Positive Thoughts; Forgiveness; and Success Defined. Last month in August, our topic was: How are YOU Doing? Ladies Night Edition. This session was very informative and reflective because I provided a review of all of our previous sessions and the ladies and I were able to casually reflect and talk about our lives over the first half of the year thus sort of giving ourselves a mid-year review.

Our sessions have grown over the last seven months to just a few ladies to now over 20 – 30 active participants. We have grown so much that I have moved the WE sessions from our office conference room to hosting them at local public libraries in Greensboro. The sessions are informal and very relaxed. In my sessions, I require that every participant give themselves permission to be who they are. We have fun, we laugh, sometimes we even cry but we always inspire and love on one another.

I am only 26-years-old and do not have all of the answers but what I can do is share what I do know and I am learning with other women in hopes that the information shared will and can change somebody’s life. God has been so good to me and I know that he will continue to bless us all. I give thanks to Him for instilling a true sense of community in me and a passion to keep others encouraged. The motto of the SDJF Women Empowering Women group is: Be Lifted. Be Inspired. Be Empowered.

Our next session will be Thursday, September 25, 2014, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the McGirt-Horton Library on Phillips Avenue. The topic is Friendship: What Makes a Friend Worthy of The Name. I invite you all to attend. The ladies of WE are also traveling to Washington, D.C. from October 10 – 12, 2014, for a “Purple Love Affair,” which is a domestic violence awareness conference with special performance by national recording artist, Dwele. If you would like to travel with us, please call, Portia Shipman at (336) 510-9292.

As author Alice Walker once stated, “The most common way people give up their power, is by thinking they do not have any.” With that quote in mind, SDJF will present “A Powerhouse” Women’s Empowerment Conference at the Greensboro Public Library, Downtown on Saturday, December 13, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This event will be FREE for ladies age 18 and up — RSVP will be required. This will be the SDJF’s Women Empowering Women biggest event of the year. This event will be packed with special activities and various inspirational speakers on topics every woman should hear. Brunch will also be provided.

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