Award-winning Lao American poet, Bryan Thao Worra, is currently moving between public libraries, coffee shops, homes and other temporary spaces. Last year, he struggled with minimal writing gigs that put his total income well under the poverty line, as his health conditions continue to be problematic. Bryan’s hope in his next chapter is to travel across the states to continue his work researching, writing, and documenting. He’ll need space, time, and the means to get around and allow him to do what he does best: creating and writing. As his friends, we're raising funds to help him get back to being Bryan. We need funds for a used car and to assist with living expenses that will help get him through the rest of this year. Help us help him and continue to do what he most passionate about. For himself and our community.
BRYAN’S CURRENT NEEDS
$7,000 - Used car for sustainable transportation
$1,000 - Car maintenance, insurance and gas
$1,000 - Expenses for food, healthcare and personal needs
*If you are unable to donate funds, we welcome any in-kind donations that you’re able to contribute. 100% of funds goes directly to Bryan Thao Worra's PayPal account.*
Bryan Thao Worra is an internationally-acclaimed award-winning Lao American writer, poet and community trailblazer. He is a dedicated advocate for social justice through the arts. He holds over 20 awards for his work including an NEA Fellowship in Literature and was a Cultural Olympian representing Laos during the 2012 London Summer Games. The author of 6 books,his work appears internationally including Australia, Canada, Scotland, Germany, France, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand, Korea, and Pakistan. Learn more about his work on his daily blog: http://thaoworra.blogspot.com, which features Asian American science fiction, fantasy, and horror.
- 20+ awards
- Published 6 books
- Published 1,000+ blog posts
- Featured in more than 10 publications, media articles and more
- Founded the National Lao Writers Summit which has reached Minneapolis, San Diego and Seattle; bringing together more than hundreds of creatives together to convene and discuss the present and future of Lao America.
- Secured more than $100,000 grants for community-based organizations, artists and social changemakers to continue their mission.
WORDS BY BRYAN
“In my work as a writer, I’ve always been an advocate for the speculative arts in refugee communities. My roots are in Vientiane, Laos and the diaspora following the Laotian Civil War. The clandestine nature of our conflict, often referred to as The Secret War, influences my writing, particularly the various ways different cultures try to shape or obliterate inconvenient elements of our shared story. The techniques of both poetry and science fiction resonate with me as key methods to address this.” -Bryan Thao Worra on Little Laos on the Prairie.
OUR THANK YOU
We know how much Bryan means to you. As a thank you for lifting him up, our team of creatives is offering the below thank you gifts for the indicated $ levels. For your contribution, it’s your choice if you would like a gift or not. Items are limited supply. Since the team is volunteer-based, all costs associated with shipping + handling must be covered by recipient. For questions or if you choose to have a gift, please send us a message to check on availability and details.
Updated as of 1/13/17 at 7:00AM CST
- $500 - Portrait painted by award-winning artist Mali Kouanchao (4 available)
- $150 - Digital portrait of you/friend/loved one illustrated by acclaimed graphic designer Mike Davis (3 available)
- $100 - 1-Hour Photo Session by Krysada Binly Phounsiri (Note: CA only, 3 available)
- $75 - “Dragon” Art Print by LA-based artist Sayon Syprasoeuth(4 available, 20x30” size)
- $40 - Batik and Faux Fur Infinity Scarf By Buatique (20 available)
- $20 - Batik Apron by Buatique (25 available)
We know very little people who have not been impacted by the presence and inspiration of Bryan work. Bryan would tell a room full of young writers that, “I write because there are others in this world who aren’t able to.” And “sometimes a cup of coffee gets you a cup of coffee,” he often jokes. Few friends are like the legendary Bryan Thao Worra. He knows the art of wordsmithing that holds weight, meaning and a pathway to our hearts and minds. He's transformative and shifts worlds to better places than it once were through his poetry alone. He opens up doors to our consciousness to what’s possible-- social change through the arts and imagination. His generous ability to advocate and blaze pathways for the arts and fellow underrepresented Asian American communities is unmatched. He has inspired hundreds who’ve come to know him as a writer, mentor and above all else, a damn good friend. This year is Bryan's 10th anniversary of his first book and it’s overdue time that he is deserving of our community’s help to lift him back up as much as he has lifted us.
The BTW Champions
Chanida Phaengdara Potter, Mali Kouanchao, Mike Davis, Channapha Khamvongsa, Nor Sanavongsay, Saymoukda Vongsay, Catzie Vilayphonh, Sayon Syprasoeuth, Krysada Panusith Phounsiri, Sunny Chanthanouvong