Hello, my name is Erika, a liberation arts educator and permie.
After working with indigenous schoolchildren and the public school system in Mindanao, I pursued Anthropology & Education and Indigenous Studies at Columbia University to re-imagine new forms of dialogue, social action, and ways of engaging in decolonizing research that involves a more egalitarian process.
In the course of my studies, I became involved in Theater of the Oppressed at TOPLAB in NYC and Gas & Electric Arts in Philly. Their incredible work deeply resonated with me--so much so that I packed my bags and moved to the opposite coast to study with the University of Southern California's Applied Theater Arts graduate program. Their thrust of Liberation Arts & Community Engagement exposed me to different modalities of the work with genocide survivors, gender justice warriors, immigrants working for community land trust, youth fighting myriad systemic issues such as the school-prison-pipeline and drug-related gang violence, former convicts working to rebuild their lives, psychiatric ward residents changing the stigma around mental health, and female domestic workers standing up against sexual harassment. After a residency with Centro Teatro do Oprimido in Rio de Janeiro, I took a permaculture design certificate course at Occidental in Northern California, which exposed me to Liberation Permaculture, where colored communities empower themselves by building self-sufficient, resilient communities through the tools of permaculture.
A thread that ran throughout all these democratic spaces was an ethics of possibility, which I hope to weave into Lunangan Imaginarium, a non-profit project whose vision is a more humanizing and regenerative world. To realize this vision, Lunangan Imaginarium hosts embodied storytelling workshops for communities facing social justice issues in order to build their personal and collective resources for resilience, dialogue, and the practice of possibility. These workshops are conducted in an ecological play-space that is in itself a prefiguration of the regenerative world we seek and need to thrive.
Lunangan means “mud puddle” in the Visayan language. In the liminal, dialogic space of mess and fun, of healing and wallowing, of wrestling and play, life is reflected upon, wrestled with, and then created anew. "We make the road by walking." I've been belly-flopping into mud puddles along the way; thank you for visiting and mud-puddling with me. :)
|Permaculture Design Certificate|
|Type: Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course|
|Verifying teacher: Occidental Arts and Ecology Center OAEC|
|Other Teachers: Brock Dollman, Kendall Dunnigan, Toby Hemenway, Darren Doherty, Janine Bjorson, Carol Nieukirk|
|Location: Occidental, California|
|Date: Sep 2013|