“An Evening for Freedom:” Dawn’s Place Gala March, 16 2013


Dawn’s Place combats Commercial Sexual Exploitation (CSE) to improve the lives of women who have been trafficked, prostituted or pimped.  Dawn’s Place is hosting the First Annual Gala and Silent Auction this March 16, 2013.  Proceeds from this benefit will help provide services to women directly effected by CSE.


One of my role models and founder of GEMS, Rachel Lloyd, will be the Keynote Speaker at the event.  Senator Daylin Leach will also be speaking and receiving an award for his Anti-Human Trafficking work.

Come join us for an amazing night of information, dinner, dancing, fundraising, and more!  Your support will help Dawn’s Place provide vital services to the Philadelphia and International community, as well as raise awareness about Commercial Sexual Exploitation.

Looking for other ways to help?  We are still seeking donations for the Silent Auction.  Please call Dawn’s Place if you would like to learn more.  Thank you to all those who have given donations!


Event Details:

Date: Saturday, March 16, 2013

Time: 6:30 – 10 pm

Location: The Baldwin School, 701 Montgomery Ave. Bryn Mawr, PA 19010

Ticket Cost: Gold Ticket: $100, Platinum Ticket: $200

To RSVP: Click Here

Show Your LGBTQ Pride at Sunday’s Parade



Photo by Harish Pathak


The annual Philadelphia PrideDay LGBT Parade and Festival happens this Sunday, June 12th from 12 – 6 pm.  A map of the route is below.  For more details check out the Philly Pride website.



Make sure to also check out the rainbow lights on the Ben Franklin Bridge, Saturday and Sunday!


Pride month is about fostering acceptance for LGBTQ individuals, that same way heterosexuals are accepted.  It’s a chance for us to stand up and show our true colors; the rainbows’ many shades.  We are blessed to be in a society where such events can occur peacefully for the most part.  But there is still a lot of fear/ hate we need to change.  A recent post on Feministing reminds us how some want us to stay hidden:


“…Florida Family Association has spend several thousand dollars to fly a plane over the theme park to warn visitors that The Gays are Coming.  Gay Day is actually not just one day, but a week-long event in Orlando around Pride Month that includes a day at Disney World on the first Saturday in June. As that Saturday just passed, so did the huge plane and banner that flew around the theme park on Friday, warning folks looking for a “normal day” at the Magical Kingdom that they’ll find the horror of past Gay Day"s…”


I was actually in Orlando over the Memorial Weekend holiday.  As I was riding along, I saw a large billboard promoting “Gay Day.”  I perked up as soon as I saw the sign.  I was happy to see that even local theme parks were catering to the LGBTQ community (even if just for our dollars).  What I saw as a heartwarming experience, groups such as the Florida Family Association saw as a great danger.  I look forward to being part of the festivities on Sunday even more after such moments.  It shows me the importance of standing with other like minds and reminding that world that we’re here…we’re “queer”…so get used to it already!

Parisian Street Fair…Philadelphia Style



This past weekend was the finale of the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts (PIFA).  The festival, which started on April 7th, ended with a Parisian style street fair.  Broad Street was transformed with lights, music, food, even acrobatics.  Throughout the month, French inspiration could be found across the city in restaurants, museums, theaters, and beyond.  Even a replica of the Eiffel Tower was created in the Kimmel Center.






Great events such as this are a reminder of how lucky we are to be in such a great city with an amazing arts scene.  How many places can you get the opportunity to feel as if you traveled to another country, without leaving your hometown?  As a person who grew up in a small town, I always dreamed of such experiences.  Now as a proud citizen of Philadelphia, I relish these opportunities to “explore the world.”  And with the internet, everyone can participate in such events “virtually”, when they can’t make it in person.  Thanks PIFA for all you do!


Please enjoy pictures of the street fair by photographer (and brother) extraordinaire Harish Pathak.  For more of his photos, visit Flickr.  Scroll to the bottom for several videos of the “La Compagnie Transe Express” performance.  I picked the best clips I could find online capturing the highlights.  Enjoy!















Screen Free Week: A Break from Media


Being the procrastinator that I am, I am posting this event up a bit late…but better late than never!  The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) presents “Screen Free Week” from April 18th-24th.  Individuals are urged to turn off their media devices and explore the world around them.  It is a chance to be in touch with our creativity, environment, community, and spirit.

Media Education Foundation (MEF), one of my favorite resources, created a great video in support of this event.

The statistics are very eye opening and an important reminder of media’s influence on our lives.  The one that sunk in deep for me was:

“We spend about 40% of our time on the planet exposed to some type of media.”

A statistic such as this helps us to understand why media is so powerful.  From the moment we wake up to the time we go to bed, we depend on media outlets to exist in this world.  Groups such as MEF have been working hard to add a new voice to media.  One that turns the lens on what we are watching, and examines the impact of this information.  So take some time this week to be media-free.  Step out in the sun, breath in the fresh air, and sit in silence while admiring the world around you.  Take time to meditate, even if it’s just ten minutes, and visualize a life with less distraction.  I guarantee you will fee refreshed and alive, filled with new energy and calm.  Have a wonderful week!

HAPPY 4/20!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sahra Indio “Jah Fire”

To all the weed smokers out there: HAPPY 4/20!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Preeti’s Purpose family supports the legalization of marijuana.  And this auspicious holiday is a worldwide reminder that weed smokers exist and are fighting for their rights.  One day, instead of using code and hiding in the shadows, we will all be able to light up a blunt just as easily as drinkers guzzle down a beer.  The prohibition of alcohol was fought by the masses and brought down.  Great organizations such as the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Legislation (NORML) are working to revise legislation and finally change the classification of marijuana.  To learn more about Philly NORML check out the open meeting on 4/21.

Visit Philadelphia Weekly to find out about local Philly 4/20 events.  One awesome event to check out is the Rasta Reality International all-day/night celebration today in West Philadelphia (view details at PW).

Check out the Preeti’s Purpose Youtube Channel for our “Tokin’ Tunes” playlist.  Just some music to kick off your celebration.  Have a fun and safe holiday (please smoke and drive responsibly).  And always remember: Puff, Puff, Pass.

“Invest in Caring Not Killing”: Global Women’s Strike

Mother’s March Video Responses

Everyday people are organizing to bring human rights to all.  Activists all over the world do there part to add to the bigger goal of changing life for the better.  One such group, fighting the good fight, is the Global Women’s Strike. As stated on their site:

“Women & girls do 2/3 of the world’s work, most of it unwaged. +$1 trillion/year is spent on the military worldwide, more than half by the US. 10% of this would provide the essentials of life for all: water, sanitation, basic health, nutrition, literacy, and a minimum income. ”

These facts are astounding and unsettling.  It shows that human life is not of most value in our world.  It makes it clear that oppression is part of our system deliberately, and we cannot ignore this anymore.  Half the population is dismissed and dehumanized simply because of biology.  The Global Women’s Strike is cognizant of reality and there demands are simple:

Payment for all caring work – in wages, pensions, land & other resources. What is more valuable than raising children & caring for others? Invest in life & welfare, not military budgets or prisons

Pay equity for all, women & men, in the global market.

Food security for breastfeeding mothers, paid maternity leave and maternity breaks. Stop penalizing us for being women.

Don’t pay ‘Third World debt’. We owe nothing, they owe us.

Accessible clean water, healthcare, housing, transport, literacy.

Non-polluting energy & technology which shortens the hours we work. We all need cookers, fridges, washing machines, computers, & time off!

Protection & asylum from all violence & persecution, including by family members & people in positions of authority.

Freedom of movement. Capital travels freely, why not people?”

Global Women’s Strike is a coalition of people working to make the lives of girls and women better all over the world; working to make their demands a reality.  Their site is full of resources from current events, important links and media, to marches taking place in your backyard.  Learn more on how to get involved locally to change human rights for women by visiting the “contact us” page.  And take the time to share this great site with others.  Awareness is the first step to social change, so be part of it!

Marijuana Taxation and Regulation Rally Cry

While checking out Philly NORML, I found out about a great pro-legalization rally taking place this Sunday, 10/10/10.  President Obama will be in Philadelphia, which will give us citizens an opportunity to be heard.  Marijuana legalization advocates rally around the world, day in and day out, to be heard by those in power.  And each time people gather in the name of change, the possibilities are limitless.  I urge all those who are free to join this great event.  You can check out this earlier post to learn more about resources to educate yourself on the history of marijuana and legalization.  If you partake in the green, but don’t know the history, it’s time to get online and start researching.  And if you find yourself frustrated by the findings…take a hit, mellow out, and take action as an advocate.  Raise awareness among those you know, start attending Philly NORML meetings, and attend the great events.

For details and updates on the 10/10/10 rally please visit the Philly NORML site.  And remember there is strength in numbers, so gather all those you know to come out and be an advocate for reform!

M.I.A. Concert Tonight in Philly!

Just wanted to update all the M.I.A. fans out there that she will be performing at the Electric Factory tonight (Sunday, 9/26/10), at 8 pm.  Her protégé, Rye Rye, will be opening for her.  Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster.  M.I.A. is known for her international beats, great stage presence, and deep rap lyrics.  Check out her music on her MySpace page to get a taste of this amazing artist.  Also check out this piece at the Philadelphia Inquirer about this upcoming concert and her tour thus far.


Maya” Album Art

An Emmy Reminder of Improvements in LGBTQ Equality

I hopped onto Feministing for my daily dose, and found this post of Jane Lynch’s Emmy acceptance speech.  She won for “Outstanding Performance as a Supporting Actress in a Comedy”, and definitely deserves it for her amazing acting.  Her acceptance speech was a reminder of her quick wit and comedic strengths.  It was also a reminder that in 2010, a lesbian woman can thank her partner without fear.  It wasn’t too long ago in history that one could not even be open about their sexuality if they were not straight.  But with time individuals revealed the truth about their sexual identity, started the fight for gay rights, and never looked back.  Because of all the little steps those before us have taken, we are able to be more open today.  People still face adversity due to their sexual orientation everyday, but the triumphs do have their ripple effect.  Mainstream media is a litmus test of what is considered acceptable in society.  And it’s heart-warming to know that a celebrity who is gay feels comfortable enough to thank her spouse on national TV.  It gives me hope that people will not judge others based on their sexual orientation and that the LGBTQ community will one day be equal members of society.  Celebrate this positive moment by enjoying the video and having a few laughs.  Go Jane Lynch – you rock!

PhillyNORML Open Meeting – Highlights of my Return to Affiliation


Boston Common, Boston, MA (I love this unique tree!)

For most of my life I had been confused by the laws surrounding marijuana.  I couldn’t understand how a plant could get so much press!  I got the chance to take a great Psychology course,”Drugs and Human Behavior”, which taught me the truth behind marijuana and drug policy.  From then on, I knew sooner or later I would have to get involved in the cause to legalize marijuana.  I saw countless people use the substance and suffer no adverse effects, while others had positive medical benefits.  The range of experience for all substances is wide with many outliers, but I learned from an early age that weed was not the drug they claimed it to be.  I believed the universe was guiding me toward my mission, so I let it do it’s thing, as I tried to think of ways to be an advocate.  This started with me looking at all sides.  Through a series of random chance events, I found PhillyNORML, and my guidance was completed.

Tonight was my second time attending a meeting, and I was glad I did.  The group is a interesting mix of concerned citizens.  And those who come with connections help to spread more awareness about cannabis.  The meeting included much discussion on the HB1393 hearings of 8/19.  Videos and more information can be found here.  Fundraising and marijuana awareness ideas such as letters to the editor, phone banking, and tables at events were shared.  One of the cool events coming up is a table at the PW concert series in Rittenhouse Park.  The next one will be held 8/25 from 7-9 pm.  To find out more about the meeting, I highly recommend reading the minutes which can be found here.

Gathering with like minds about changing society in a positive way is so important.  Getting involved in a cause gives us a greater connection to our community, beliefs, and stimulates the mind.  The key to marijuana law reform is to get the third most popular recreational drug in the U.S. (after tobacco and alcohol) out of the darkness and into the public eye.  The supporters must speak.  The more we hide our beliefs from society, the harder we make it to be free.  For a drug that is enjoyed recreationally, used medicinally, and grows in dirt I wonder, is the fear in the power of nature?  Because we know the earth speaks louder than any corporate or political voice.  So join your local chapter of NORML, start one in your area, or begin discussions with others on this important topic.

I leave you with a poem that is from the perspective of an individual trying to make sense of the criminalization of marijuana.  It highlights the medicinal, creative, and recreational aspects of weed.  Please enjoy and share your experiences with the great green bud:)

Trust the Bud

They tell me not to trust the bud.

Blooms in forests, free in the sun.

Try to fight it, but I have seen.

The truth behind the shady screen.

Breaking up the dark green love.

Rolling it up, now my mind flies above.

Starry skies, atmosphere.

Now my mind feels so clear.

Inhalation of the calm.

Exhalation of the storm.

Light and airy, I float on words.

I float on sights.

I touch the sun.

No longer shall my body waste.

As my senses stimulate.

Finest tastes in my glands.

Not for any feast, I demand.

Happy to eat straight from the earth.

The farmer learns to worth of dirt.

Writing flows from fingertips.

Artistic visions conjure within.

Read I won’t have aptitude.

Read I’d lack the drive to move.

But I am flying past the rest.

My broken body can pass the test.

Facts as high as the Himalayas smeared.

For many the benefits, still unclear.

But I attest to the strength.

Of Bhagwan’s medicine.

From dusky dawn to setting sun,

I’ll blaze the truth until we’ve won.

8/16/10 —–Preeti Pathak