University of Massachusetts Amherst

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The “Hear Our Stories: Diasporic Youth for Sexual Rights and Justice” program uses digital storytelling to examine sexual and reproductive health disparities among young parenting Latinas in Holyoke, Massachusetts. The project prioritizes uprooted young women and aims to reframe public conversations on young motherhood and sexuality, health, and reproductive rights across generations by building sexuality research. In the process, the program works with young parenting Latinas to develop their capacity as advocate-leaders.

Cultural and economic realities have placed many of the participants in unstable positions, but through the use of videos, trainings, workshops and conferences, they are able to share their stories and help shape policies and media narratives.

“Hear Our Stories” brings together a team of social science researchers, young parenting women, sexual and reproductive justice advocates, and strategic communications experts to create alliances for community mobilization, leadership and policy development.

The project involves six local, state and national partners, including: