The Hope and Care Center Wants You To Meet Their New Educator, Aeianna!

Aeianna is The Care and Hope Center's Newly Hired Educator! Here, Aeianna enjoys a beautiful day at the beach...
Aeianna is The Care and Hope Center’s Newly Hired Educator! Here, Aeianna enjoys a beautiful day at the beach…

Though loyalty can easily be drawn in the sand, unconditional faith and commitment is often etched in stone.

In fact, it is this kind of commitment that has been seemingly found within Aeianna…the newest Educator at The Care and Hope Center!  A devout RL Domestic Violence Advocate, Aeianna has already dedicated her first life to helping others.  She explains, “I am an advocate for individuals affected by domestic violence, sexual assault and /or childhood sexual abuse.  This includes crisis intervention, counseling, and also prevention education.”

And…while others look to Second Life as a kind escape from their First Lives, it is easy to discern that Aeianna looks to Second Life as a way to expand upon her Real Life role of helping others.  When Aeianna was asked what motivated her to align herself with The Care and Hope Center, she tells The SL Parade, “I have been watching the work of the Care and Hope Center, via notices and even attending some of the discussions for the better part of a year now.  I felt that Morgan [Owner of The Care and Hope Center] had a very strong sense of what she felt that she wanted to achieve, and the message she wanted to share.  I was impressed by her determination, and felt that with my professional knowledge and skill set that I could help her take her message to the next level in a way that could be beneficial to second life residents.”

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Photo courtesy of Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, Hope and Care Center Owner

One of many ways Aeianna has taken The Hope and Care Center to the next level is by previously hosting a “Love Addiction” class.  On her Facebook page, Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe describes Aeianna’s class as being wonderful, and adds: “Aeianna, our new educator, was super fantastic! The class was informative and created a lot of discussion. Thank you to all that attended! Our new class topic will be announced shortly…”

Like Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe is in awe by Aeianna’s talent, Aeianna is also intrigued by Morgan’s commitment to spreading the word about Domestic Abuse and Violence.  Aeianna explains, “From the moment I met Morgan, I knew we would be fast friends.  I believe that she has the passion and commitment to see herself through bringing the message into SL that violence against individuals is unacceptable.  Personally I plan to bolster her efforts and hope to bring awareness of the issues of cyber abuse, that it is a real thing, and needs to be talked about.  I hope to help get that discussion some momentum both within SL and across other social media outlets.”

Educator EffectivenessAnd while Aeianna’s Care and Hope Center title is that of an Educator, she contends that there is more to the title than meets the eye.  Aeianna says, “My title at Care and Hope is that of ‘Educator,’ but really what I do is host open discussions that are meant to get the conversation started about IPV (Intimate Partner Violence) with my focus being the types of violence that can be spread and felt through virtual forums, like Second Life and various social media. So things such as cyber bullying and emotional abuse within relationships tend to be my primary focus not only in SL but in RL, too.”

Yet one of the most intriguing things that The SL Parade has uncovered is that the person behind Aeianna has been inworld for almost 9 years, and that she plans to use what she has learned in SL during that time to better assist The Care and Hope Center!  Aeianna reiterates this realization by saying, “I have nearly 9 years in SL (This is not my first avi); over that time I have done many things…I have managed sims, been a builder, been a model, ran a modeling agency, been an auctioneer for bunnies and meeroos…I’ve done a number of things across my SL and the most useful experience will be my ability to talk with and connect to individuals…”

The SL Parade looks forward to seeing Aeianna flourish in her Educator position at The Care and Hope Center!  To learn more about upcoming classes that will be held at The Care and Hope Center, please contact Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe or Aeianna inworld!  They can also be reached via Facebook by clicking on the following links:  Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe and Aeianna.

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Care and Hope Center Press Release: Cyber bullying Testimonies Needed for Upcoming Class

morgan in flowerFrom the desk of Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, Care and Hope Center Owner:

Sometime around July or early August, The Care and Hope Center, along with The SL Parade, will collaborate and have a class discussion on a subject that all of us can relate to…bullying.  ReRe Sandalwood and I will concentrate on the topic of cyber bullying since Second Life is an online form of social media.

If you would like to share a cyber bullying-related experience, please send your testimony to either me or ReRe Sandalwood via an inworld notecard.  You can also send your testimony via a private IM in Facebook.  To do the latter, please feel free to click on our names listed below:

Arreba Sandalwood at The SL Parade and Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe at The Care and Hope Center

rere and sophie ha_001You can also send your testimony to ReRe’s The SL Parade address at reresandalwood@theslparade.org.

We plan to share your testimony in a supportive, classroom-based environment, and offer you the option to personally present it in a confidential and safe manner.  If you would prefer to anonymously send a testimony, ReRe Sandalwood and I will kindly (and anonymously) share your testimony in class.  Your name will not be mentioned if you do not want it to be.

We can not stress enough how much we need and appreciate your support.  With that being said, we look forward to hearing from you soon!

 

Intimacy At Its Best: Morgan’s Coffee Place

morgans cafe_011Sometimes, the very things that make up a community are the most simplest and underestimated.

This is the case with Morgan’s Coffee Place, an intimate coffee house nestled within SL’s mainland.  Located at Madhupak, Morgan’s Coffee Place is intimately close to the Care and Hope Center, an inworld domestic violence center that offers classes, as well as support to inworld domestic violence victims.

morgans cafe_002Like the Care and Hope Center, Morgan’s Coffee Place is an extension of the support featured at the Center to the SL Community. When a patron walks into the Cafe, for instance, there is a bulletin board to the left, and an intimate photo section to the right.  The bulletin board is filled with resources and ads, similar to a bulletin board that you would find at a local, RL coffee house.  In fact, Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, owner of Morgan’s Coffee Place, will gladly post any fliers, etc. that are designed to offer assistance to the SL community.

In terms of the intimate photo section, the most noticeable thing about it is that it is shaped like a heart.  Within this heart are a compilation of photos of Mickalobe, as well as her modeling colleagues, and her husband.  Yet, there are also some empty frames within the heart, too.  The empty ones may prove quite intriguing to those who wish to include their photo on the wall…in this case, if you are interested in having your pictured featured, please be sure to contact Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, too.

morgans cafe_007While it is easy to become both enamored and sad about the, heart-shaped photo collage featured at Morgan’s Coffee, it is worth noting that this collage is merely a shadow of what is available at this shop.  The smallness of the place creates a rather quaint feeling; this quaintness makes it a bit easier for the SL patron to relax, as well as hold an intimate conversation with a friend…all while enjoying a cup of coffee or earl tea.  And though none of us really, truly eat inworld, what Morgan’s Coffee offers is intimacy that can nourish the soul.

According to Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe’s (pictured below) Facebook page, she created Morgan’s Coffee for the following reasons:

I created a small little coffee/cookie shop on the Mainland (right up the street from my Care and Hope Center). If you have some time to spare and want to relax and have a cup of coffee, please stop by!  To my model friends, please feel free to use this shop and also my tiny apartment located upstairs for your blog posts/flickr. You are always welcome!

morgan beachSo, not only is Morgan’s Coffee a great place to relax, it is also a comfortable place to take pictures and to simply be your creative best.

If you are searching for an alternative to the SL club scene, The SL Parade strongly suggest you pay Morgan’s Coffee a visit!  To learn more about Morgan’s Coffee, please be sure to contact Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe inworld or via Facebook.

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Yes, Morgan’s Coffee has chocolate chip cookies :)!

 

Victory For All At The Black Tie Affair!

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ReRe Sandalwood (left) and Treasure Xstar (right) recently planned The Black Tie Affair in honor of victims of Domestic Violence…

Yesterday, on Friday, April 1, 2016, three women showed the power of unity and perseverance by jointly presenting a Black Tie Affair dedicated to the victims of domestic violence.

DJ Bangz relaxes as she plays a cool combination of Neo-Soul and R&B...
DJ Bangz relaxes with a patron as she plays a cool combination of Neo-Soul and R&B…

This Black-Tie Affair happened at 6 PM SLT, and featured the joint efforts of Treasure Xstar, ReRe Sandalwood, and Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe. ƊJ ƁαηgƵ SαηɗαƖƜσσɗ (jeeneflo.carter) offered up her DJ expertise, playing a collective mix of neo-soul with a splash of music that encouraged all to get our groove on on the dance floor, while Kamille Kamala created the original flier that advertised this powerful and piognant gala.

Featuring a formal black and white setting, The Black Tie Affair was not only presented by a collective mix of women, but was also sponsored by their companies and nonprofits.  Treasure Xstar is the owner and proprietor of Brooklyn Co., while Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe fulfills duo roles as both owner and Domestic Violence Advocate at The Care and Hope Center.  Also, as many SL Parade readers know, ReRe Sandalwood is the online publication’s Founder and Editor-In-Chief, while Sandalwood’s sister, Kamille Kamala gracefully runs the Lyrical Cafe, while simutaneously writing for The SL Parade and for Windlight Magazine. To learn more about Kamille Kamala’s involvement in the latter, please click onto the following link:  Windlight Magazine Introduces Kamille Kamala.

Also, please take a look at the slideshow below to get a better idea of who helped in making this event a success:

[Best_Wordpress_Gallery id=”20″ gal_title=”companies that sponsored DV Tie”]

Although The Black Tie Affair for Domestic Violence was originally created to pay homage to victims, the creation of this event offers a bittersweet story.  To better explain, Treasure Xstar and ReRe Sandalwood were originally line sisters affiliated with a local, SL-based Sorority.  Unfortunately, the sorority decided to abruptly sever the line, leaving the plans Xstar and Sandalwood already made for the Black Tie Affair for Domestic Violence in limbo.  While both ladies were frustrated with this outcome, both mutually decided to not only have this event anyway, but to have it on a yearly basis to commemorate the victims of Domestic Violence, as well as to reflect on their joint struggles during the pledging process (specifically as created by the intentionally unnamed sorority in question).

domestic violence 28Though the event’s location had to be changed at the last minute, Xstar, Sandalwood, and Mickalobe were able to create an atmosphere of sharing, dancing, and reflective fun.  Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe states, ” I always say…you never know the battles people are in in their real lives….So tread lightly with others.”

This statement is not only applicable to RL Domestic Violence victims, but to those in SL and beyond who are victims of cyberbullying, harassment, and emotional abuse. In light of this realization, Treasure Xstar, as well as Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe and ReRe Sandalwood, kindly request that all donations be sent to your local community shelters and domestic violence organizations.

Treasure Xstar was also kind enough to create a list of accredited websites that offer more information about domestic violence:

Treasure Xstar poses with her grandparents, Mrs. Cara W Glenfadden and Mr. Devlin Glenfadden
Treasure Xstar poses with her grandparents, Mrs. Cara W Glenfadden and Mr. Devlin Glenfadden

In addition to providing this information to patrons who attended the Black Tie Affair to Honor Domestic Violence Victims, Treasure Xstar’s Brooklyn Co. was also kind enough to pass out Domestic Violence ribbons and purple teddy bears to commemorate this gala occasion.  In addition, Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe gave out prizes to those that got a 90 percent or better on The Domestic Violence Quizzes that were passed.  Prizes included gift cards from TROMPE LOEIL , as well as from Damselfly, and Truth.  Mickalobe also gave out a rare Gacha home that was created by SOY as a prize.

Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe looks on as she awards patrons who completed The Domestic Violence Quiz...
Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe looks on as she awards patrons who completed The Domestic Violence Quiz…

ReRe Sandalwood’s nonprofit, The SL Parade provided dance balls, as well as champagne for all patrons.

In addition to planning a yearly Black Tie Affair as tribute to Domestic Violence victims, Sandalwood and Xstar are also planning an Old School Hip Hop Party.  The SL Parade, as well as ReRe Sandalwood and Treasure Xstar will be offering more information about the upcoming Old School Hip Hop Party event in a few days time.

Treasure Xstar and ReRe Sandalwood would like to thank everyone who supported, as well as participated in, this year’s Black Tie Affair Gala.  As a token of their appreciation, The SL Parade has agreed to publish all photos taken at this event!  Take a look:

[Best_Wordpress_Gallery id=”21″ gal_title=”Black tie Affair”]

The Care and Hope Center: An Organization That Offers RL Assistance in an SL World…

morgan dv pic

 

Even in Second Life, there is a need for hope…

In fact, hope is one of many things offered at The Care and Hope Center.  Personally organized and ran by Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, The Care and Hope Center directly addresses domestic violence and abuse via class offerings and discussions.

The Care and Hope Center also acts as an inworld safe haven for not only RL domestic violence survivors who play Second Life, but also for Second Life players who have experienced inworld forms of domestic violence and abuse.

Like RL domestic violence and Abuse, SL domestic violence and abuse can involve: mental, emotional, economic/financial, and–in extreme cases–physical abuse.

To better address this phenomenon, The Care and Hope Center will be offering a free class to all SL community members interested in learning more about the warning signs intrinsic in domestic violence and abuse.  The class, entitled “Warning Signs of An Abusive Relationship,” will be taught via voice by Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe, and will be held at the Chilbo Business District Sim on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 7:00 PM SLT.

morgan in ~Ghee~ photo
Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe is also an SL Model. This pic shows her at one of her ~Ghee~ photo shoots…

When asked what prompted her to create the inworld Care and Hope Center, Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe explains:

“Well, I have always been an advocate to promote awareness on domestic violence and violence against women.   When I first started college, I befriended a woman who disclosed to me that she was a victim of abuse…severe from her ex-husband.  She recalled one incident where she was 6 months into her pregnancy and her husband assaulted her.  He punched her face as if she was his sparing partner and even hit her in the stomach…”

Mickalobe continues, “The husband was arrested and taken away…however, she refused to press charges against her ex….her in-laws literally begged and pleaded that she drop all charges.”

Situations such as the one Mickalobe described are the central reason why an inworld safe haven was created for all victims of domestic violence and abuse.  As echoed in Mickalobe’s interview however, The Care and Hope Center focuses on women survivors of domestic violence and abuse.  This is because women are more likely to be victims than men.

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…courtesy of Maps of The World: Trending Global Issues…

According to Alanna Vagianos’ Huffington Post’s article entitled, 30 Shocking Domestic Violence Statistics That Remind Us It’s An Epidemic, “Women are much more likely to be victims of intimate partner violence with 85 percent of domestic abuse victims being women and 15 percent men. Too many women have been held captive by domestic violence — whether through physical abuse, financial abuse, emotional abuse or a combination of all three.”(Vagianos)

With statistics as horrifying as these, it is no wonder why Mickalobe’s work calls for her to directly address female victims of domestic violence and abuse.  Because the number of women victims is so high, it is important that a place is created solely for them, by them. This, in turn not only gives them the support they need, but also provides a safe place to share intimate information with other female victims of domestic violence and abuse.

With this in mind, The Care and Hope Center’s safe haven is located at Madhupak, and offers an array of information about domestic violence, as well as acts as a central location where RL and SL Domestic Abuse survivors can meet in a confidential setting.  The meetings usually incorporate lecture-based techniques as a way to educate others about domestic violence and abuse, but Mickalobe is planning to incorporate student-centered based techniques in her domestic violence and abuse classes, too.

care and hope center_002Student-centered classes often include activities as a way to empower students to take learning into their own hands.  These activities can range from open-ended discussion questions that allow students to freely discuss their thoughts on a topic, to methods that rely on visual props like beads or even slips of paper to help students better grasp key concepts intrinsic in a topic.

Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe plans to incorporate student-centered teaching methods in her SL classes not only as a way to reach an array of learners, but to make her courses more accessible to those who misinterpret her inworld Center as a threat to their SL.

Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe (center), ReRe Sandalwood (right)
Morgan Whitfield Mickalobe (center), ReRe Sandalwood (right)

She continues, “There are a lot of charitable organizations here in SL.  But, I noticed that there is nothing that really deals with Domestic Violence and Victims of Abuse that provides facts and classes.  Yes, there are events that benefit good causes, but none that really educate people.  In this sense, SL is really an untapped medium to spread the message.  That is what I proposed to the folks at the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence.  They agreed that SL is a great way to spread the message…..thousands of residents log in here each day…”

To learn more about domestic violence and abuse, please pay a visit to The Care and Hope Center…there are an array of resources available to all who are interested.

care and hope center_001

References:

Maps of the World:  Trending Global Issues, Pinterest (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/281686151663793081/)

Vagianos, Alanna. “30 Shocking Domestic Violence Statistics That Remind Us It’s An Epidemic.” The Huffington Post, February 13, 2015 (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/23/domestic-violence-statistics_n_5959776.html).