2017 YEAR END LETTER

Dear PEN Members and Friends,
 
PEN appreciates your support for the unifying beliefs of PEN Centers operating worldwide, that all people—regardless of race, gender, or creed—should be able to read and write freely. For over 30 years, PEN has focused its work on people and communities threatened by silence. Not only journalists, but children, women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, the homeless, senior citizens, cancer patients, veterans, and the list goes on.

Providing citizens with the tools they need to express themselves and their worldviews truthfully, to equip people to resist the attacks waged on them and on their rights, is dangerous work in 2017, but PEN is doing it. In 2018, PEN will increase our advocacy efforts in the U.S., fortifying our commitment not only to oppose constraints on expression, but "to dispel race, class, and national hatreds, and to champion the ideal of one humanity living in peace in one world,” as outlined in the PEN Charter, 1948. In addition to direct aid, PEN will continue to monitor and respond to the critical issues facing our nation.

PEN understands that we have the opportunity and responsibility to save and enrich lives with words, so we will continue to offer literary arts programming including workshops, discussions, and readings via PEN In The Community and the Emerging Voices Fellowship, which serve over 6,000 people each year. However, the impact and efficacy of our work depends on our membership.

We need you, as advocates, to participate in the fight for free expression. Please JOIN or RENEW your membership today. We need your voice, your wisdom, and your donations. 

We look forward to working with you in 2018, and hope that you have a restorative holiday season. 

Best,


Michelle Franke 
Executive Director