In Memoriam: The Kora Fund

UntitledThe Kora Fund lifts up voices that the world sorely needs to hear. The fund supports women committed to often-stigmatized issues that Kora herself cared about including sex education, sex worker advocacy or eco-conscious approaches to waste and refuse.

Elizabeth Nell Reilly was adopted and raised in Keene, NH, by loving parents Susan and Brian Reilly. Like so many visionary spirits, she found a home in San Francisco’s vibrant alternative culture, where she created the art name Kora Hayes. Liz to her family, Kora to many friends, she was a uniquely brilliant, loving and creative spirit who brought joy, healing and insight to every life she touched.  The untimely loss of both her mother and beloved brother, Andy, fostered in her a profound awareness of the cycles of human life and our relationship to the planet.

Weeks before her passing, she received a scholarship to attend The OpEd Project’s Write to Change the World seminar. The experience intensified her efforts to call attention to crucial but frequently marginalized topics of sex and trash, both essential elements of her cradle-to-cradle vision of harmony between humans and the Earth that sustains us all.

A gifted writer, Kora fell silent at the age of 37. The Kora Fund ensures that others like her will be heard. The Kora Fund will:

  • provide a full “pay in words” scholarship for one attendee of every Write to Change the World seminar in San Francisco
  • support a woman who could not otherwise afford the program
  • give special consideration to women from alternative communities or with a shared passion for Kora’s topics

To donate to the Kora Fund, please click here. The OpEd Project’s founder Katie Orenstein has committed to matching donations made in Kora’s name, up to the first $1,000.

You may use the comment section of this post to share memories of Kora. The OpEd Project will be in touch with all donors via email.

Tell me, what else should I have done? Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon? Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?

–Mary Oliver

Pictured Above: Kora (in denim jacket) at the Write to Change the World seminar in Seattle, January 30, 2016.

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