Saida Agostini

Hosted at Cedar & Cotton

part of a series on Courage

About the speaker

Saida Agostini is a queer afro-guyanese poet and activist. She is the Chief Operating Officer for FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture, a survivor led artist collective dedicated to resisting rape culture. As COO, Saida supports FORCE in sustaining and expanding its capacity to engage in survivor led movement building work. She is also the founding member of the Rooted Collective, a liberatory gathering of Black LGBTQ people to define, dream, and expand on the ways we heal from oppression. In her work, Saida has organized statewide advocacy initiatives promoting the rights of LGBTQ youth in foster care, education and juvenile justice, and directed art actions uplifting the visibility of Black girls, women and queer folks. A published poet and writer, Saida’s work is featured in the Black Ladies Brunch Collective’s anthology, Not Without Our Laughter, the Baltimore Sun, pluck!, The Little Patuxent Review, and other publications. Saida has received support for her poetry and resistance work from Cave Canem, the Leeway Foundation and other institutions. Saida’s activism has been recognized by the Baltimore Magazine, and Baltimore Sun - where she was named one of 2017’s 25 Women to Watch. The NoVo Foundation recently named Saida a Movement Maker, joining a national cohort of 20 leaders in the fight to end violence against women and girls. Other honors include the award of a 2017 Ruby grant to support the development of her first full-length collection of poems, uprisings in a state of joy.

Local partners

Additional details

When researching or writing about courage, other traits fall into the mix: risk, vulnerability, curiosity, empathy, and action.

It seems, then, that courage has nothing to do with your title or level of expertise. It’s not for the few or the gifted. It’s an act of humanity, of choosing to take an action that is risky because it demands vulnerability and curiosity.

Courage has no specific form and knows no bounds. From starting a side project to the act of listening when you would rather interject, every day we are wrapped in opportunities to exercise courage.

We need your courage. It’s going to be risky and will require vulnerability. A posture of empathy and curiosity will empower you. And above all, you must take action.

This month is presented by our global partner This month’s global exploration of Courage was chosen by our Oakland chapter and illustrated by Annie Wong.