We empower our community by helping people craft and share their personal stories. Storytelling is a powerful tool for developing self-efficacy, building relationships, and gaining perspective.

Our Mission:

We exist to provide opportunities for at-risk, marginalized individuals to own their stories and experience empowerment through the power of story.

Some of the ways that we engage in our mission:

  • Providing free workshops to students at the elementary, middle, and high school levels

  • Helping to coordinate story sharing spaces for students

  • Working within hospitals to provide story development services to patients to assist with recovery

  • Developing story-based legacy projects with senior citizens

Self Narrate is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit so your donation is tax-deductible. A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE WITHIN THE STATE. REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL, OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE. The toll-free number of the department is 1-800-HELP-FLA (435-7352) – calling from within the state of Florida, or (850) 410-3800 – calling from outside of Florida. The department’s website is www.800helpfla.com

Brandon Telg, M.S.
Co-Founder, Treasurer, and Executive Director

Brandon is a social entrepreneur who strives to help people grow through understanding and developing their personal stories. He combines his experience in communication with a hands-on mentoring approach to work with people  and organizations to achieve their goals. He also utilizes his theatre background to facilitate captivating storytelling.


Jaron Jones, Ph.D.
Co-Founder, Facilitator and Chairman of the Board

Jaron brings a wealth of expertise in personal leadership development for higher education. He is passionate about working with faculty, student organizations, administrators, and athletics to enhance student experiences and outcomes during their time in high school, college and beyond.

Alise Vick
Director of Community Initiatives

Syraj Syed
Board Member, Secretary

Syraj trained in the fields of communications, education and behavioral health only to find his greatest fulfillment in working with people to re-author their life stories.  He has found that whole-person healing occurs best when individuals can move forward with the empowerment that comes with authoring one's own narrative.  Syraj has helped many individuals find their best selves through being deterministic within their own storyline--to write that next chapter that is authentically theirs.  Syraj works with people recovering from addiction, growing through mental health challenges, developing as learners or finding their vocational expression.  


Book Published by Self Narrate Co-Founders

Break Your Invisible Chains by Brandon Telg, Dr. Jaron Jones & Carly Barnes

Literary Journal: Braided Brook

Volume 1
Volume 2
Volume 3

Published Articles by Self Narrate

Daughters of a Revolution published in UCF’s journal Aquifer: The Florida Review Online
The Best Life Is One Lived for Others published in UCF's journal Aquifer: The Florida Review Online
Story Development for UF/IFAS' EDIS Publication Database
Letting Them In: Sharing Your Story with People outside of Your Industry for UF/IFAS' EDIS Publication Database
Face-to-Face Storytelling for UF/IFAS' EDIS Publication Database
Storytelling Through Social Media for UF/IFAS' EDIS Publication Database

Self Narrate Column In The Gainesville Sun

Starting in May 2016, Self Narrate and The Gainesville Sun newspaper have partnered to share the many amazing stories of Gainesville residents. These are those stories:

Jhody Polk: Embracing my name and shedding society’s labels
Kristy Sutton: Saying hello to the next goodbye
Katie Robinson: The turkey that visited the target range
Kristen Stone: How to (not) write a family secret
Mackenzie Patel: The clarity of Wacahoota Road
Brandon Telg: The mind-blowing power of music
Collin Whitlock: The battle for an IKEA parking spot
Daniel Webster: Facing uncertainty with faith
Garrett R. Hall: Dad music
Alise Cross: Success in slow motion
Heather Halak: A space in which an inner life is fostered
Tamara Herchel: Learning to be my own cheerleader
Justine Mara Andersen: Pete Best, Ringo Starr and me
Liz Pratt: The side effects of studying counseling
Cassie Selleck: For angels lost, forgotten
Sally Breedlove: Waiting for a woman's guidance
Jasmine Gibbs: What they don't tell you about snow
Katie Hyson: He could not touch her worth
Taylor Durant: When unforeseen events shift your life's path
Kristine Crane: Reflections on my Roman girlhood
Quanisha Madison: Overcoming a fear of failure is key to success
Glenna Auxier: Being a southerner shouldn't require false pride
Lauren Walker: Coping with the death of my sister
Michelle C. McAdams: Looking for love, for a friend
Sara Pedroni: When one moment changes your life
Pascale Belony: Growing up as a Haitian immigrant in the U.S.
Adreenh Wynn: What it means to be African-American
Anna Grace Sampson: A love for trees turned into a life's work
Dylan Klempner: Music and art have impact in hospital
Syraj Syed: The power of storytelling in making change
Stacey Marquis: Our first holiday season without Babci
Deborah Lyn Thompson: Giving thanks during difficult times
Michaelyn Luttge: The kiss that changed my life 
Benny Torres: Sharing my truth with my family
Zachary Pindar: We all have countless occupations
Jennifer Aponte: A lesson for my daughter - Live like you are dying
Levy Odera: Getting an education the hard way
Gretchen Casey: Ending shame for sexual assualt victims
Jacob Atem: A life-changing educational journey

Self Narrate In The News

The Alligator: Heartwood Soundstage to host biannual Story Summit
Gainesville Sun:
Gainesville once exported goods, now export ideas
Today@Santa Fe:
Voices of Gainesville interactive art reception at SF’s Blount Center
The Alligator:
Gainesville residents lament inequity at Alachua County schools
The Alligator: 
‘Storytelling bridges gaps’: Three former inmates speak at the Hippodrome
Gainesville Sun: 
Story Summit to share 'healing, powerful, silly, fun' sagas
GainesvilleScene: Story Summit: A night of Gainesville's best storytelling
HOME Magazine: Enhancing students' personal and educational growth through storytelling
StoryCenter:  Publishing digital stories (Reference)
Third House Podcast: Episode One - The Storytellers
Gainesville Magazine:  Creative Gainesville: The power of a well-told tale
The Gainesville Sun: The Spirit of Gainesville Award Nomination for Entrepreneurship (2017)
The Alligator: UF to host business, health and education storytelling conference in Fall
The Alligator: Gainesville organization creates storytelling meetups
InSession Film Podcast: Episode 211
BettermeTV: Invisible Chains
The UF Advisor: Snapshots from the 2017 UF Advising Conference!
frank: A Storytelling Takeover
Gainesville Scene: Culture Shock
Ocala StarBanner: Millenial Entrepreneurs Making a Go of it
Gainesville Sun: A Community of Storytellers
The Alligator: Company Invites Gainesville speakers to share life lessons
WUFT: Self Narrate: The Story Behind The Storytellers
Gainesville Scene: TEDxUF: A Journey to the Breakthrough
The Gainesville Sun: TEDxUF focuses on 'breaking through'
The Gainesville Sun: Project gets people to bare their souls to strangers
The Gainesville Sun: Self Narrate Storytelling Meetup (Photoset)
The Alligator: Heartbreak stories tonight at The Bull downtown
AEC Review Newsletter: Self Narrate: Expanding Self-Awareness Through Storytelling