babes of wrath

  • Babes of Wrath

    Welcome to the new honorary 
    Babe of Wrath!

    Honorary Babe Barbara

    Barbara James of Texas has joined the ranks of the Babes of Wrath for her outstanding service on our
    Dismazed & Left Out tour!


    Keep up with
    the Babes!

    Babes of Wrath on Facebook!


    2022 Babes' Events

    Memorial Blanket Project

    Blanket Pat DDNDecember 21, Memorial Blanket Project, US Capitol lawn,
    Washington, DC

    HEAR US is joining with the Charles Bruce Foundation to create a 9,000+ sq. ft. display of handmade blankets (quilted, knitted, crocheted) to commemorate National Homeless Persons' Memorial Day. More info:

    Want to learn more about the Babes of Wrath?

    D D cvr FINAL small

    Diane's new book, 
    Dismazed and Driven - My Look at Family Homelessness in America,
    contains several of their escapades!
    > MORE INFO 


    Pat and Diane each wrote a book about homelessness that have gotten amazing reviews, including in the prestigious LA Review of Books.


    In 2011, Pat LaMarche and Diane Nilan hit the pavement in Tillie, the HEAR US corporate office/wheels and residentialsouthern discomfort-PLM DDN headquarters. Their maiden voyage, Southern Discomfort, was the first of the EPIC Journeys, (Everyday People In Crisis). They traveled through 7 southern states, generating massive media coverage and large crowds in communities desperate for attention to the homeless children and youth crisis.

    They received tremendous tech support and graphics from Max Donnelly, the stationary member of the team. 

    Pat and Diane survived. And the excitement, response and media coverage of Trip 1 guaranteed a sequel. Thus Babes of Wrath was born (inspired by the Grapes of Wrath).

    In January 2013, the Babes headed westward for a month through Steinbeck-land and beyond to call attention to and raise compassion for homeless children and youth. They collaborated with local activists and held events, including film screenings (My Own Four Walls and on the edge: Family Homelessness in America), book talks (Left Out in America and Crossing the Line), and met with mayors to really survey them about local homelessness issues and efforts.

    See the Babes of Wrath on Current TV's news magazine,
     The Young Turks


    In November 2013, the Babes did a daring dash to Maine, stopping in Massachusetts and New Hampshire along the way. 

    Babes HomelessRange


    October 2014
     Trip # 4, Homeless on the Range. The rolling duo ventured through CO, WY, MT, NB, KS, and landed at the NAEHCY conferencein Kansas City, MO at the end of October. 

    This was the maiden voyage of Tillie2, the sleek new camper-van that will be the HEAR US headquarters, offfering a lighter eco-footprint as HEAR US travels to raise awareness of homeless children and youth. 

    Pat LaMarche also blogged about our trip on her HuffPo blog.

    Speaker of the House Paul Ryan's office was the scene of a Babes visit. DDN1.IMG 7947

    DDN5.IMG 7963DDN2.IMG 7957DDN4.IMG 7959

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    P D Frost BitesBabes of Wrath visited Speaker Paul Ryan's Janesville, WI office in 10/16. Pat stood outside his office with a sign seeking support for homeless persons. Diane sat in her van across the street, filming the excitement in this excitement-deprived town. A nearby shopkeeper called the police who came and checked out these, ahem, middle-aged activists who want to Make America Kind Again.

    Babes CA logoIn July '18, Pat and Diane were invited to present at the NOW (National Organization of Women) national conference. Their topic--Homelessness is a Feminist Issue. The discussion was electric! 


    This event created the opportunity for the Babes to put together their California Dreamin' Nightmaretour, and the Babes found plenty of nightmares--homelessness abound.


    TunaGate, an outrageous attempt to punish impoverished households by handing tuna sandwiches to students in Cherry Hill, NJ, a fairly affluent enclave east of Philly. Babes of Wrath Pat LaMarche and Diane Nilan popped into this community and spoke with the district McKinney-Vento liaison and others. Before too long it was quite evident that families experiencing homelessness were being unfairly caught in this punative effort aimed at lunch scofflaws. National media attention on this included an interview with Diane.(9/19) 

    The simple math lesson indicates why this is such a concern. 

    Babes CherryHill 9 19

    Babes of Wrath by a dinosaur statue near Cherry Hill.CherryHill

    Contact Diane
     for information and to get your community on the path of
    these bodacious advocates











  • Babes' Banned Book Tour 22

    Babes Banned 22Babes banned logo

    Babes of Wrath will be taking their books, banned and not, on a one-month 12 state tour. 
    The Babes' presentations will hit an array of audiences. Some of the stops will be fundraisers, with book proceeds going to a local cause.

    Babes Banned Book Tour (BBBT) Schedule:

    Books available for purchase at events.

    Sept. 14, Lindenhurst, IL  7 -  8:30 pm, Lake Villa District Library, Program Room A, 140 N Munn Rd., Lindenhurst. Public, no charge.


    Sept. 15, Minneapolis, MN  My Very Own Bed and Eastside Neighborhood Association are hosting the BBBT. 
    Thursday, 7 - 8:30 pm, 1700 Second Street NE, Mpls, MN 


       TRAVEL to MT
    Sept. 18-21, MT

    19, 6 pm,Glendive, Dawson Community College, Toepke Auditorium, public, no charge

    20, 6 pm, Bozeman, location TBA, public, no charge 

    21, 3 pm?, Bozeman, Clearwater Properties, TBA

    21, 6 pm, Whitehall Community Library, public, no charge

    22, 2 pm, Pablo, Salish Kootenai College, public, no charge

    Sept. 23-24, Spokane and Cheney. WA

    23, 12 pm*, Liberty Park Library, public, no charge

    23, 2 - 3:00 pm*, Central Downtown Library, public, no charge

    24, 10 - 11 am, Medical Lake Library, public, no charge

    24, 12:30 - 1:30 pm, Cheney Public Library, public, no charge

    * times subject to change

    Sept 25-26  TRAVEL
    Sept. 27-29, Paradise, CA

    28, Cal State University, Chico, 7 -  8:30 pm, Colusa Hall 100, community awareness, 
    Butte County Office of Education, morning, time TBD
    29, 2:00 Cal State Chico, Child Welfare Class

    Sept. 29-30 TRAVEL after Chico event and monring of Salt Lake City event
    Sept. 30, Salt Lake City, UT  2:00, 2 - 3:30 pm, Salt Lake City Public Library
    Oct. 1  Travel to NM
    Oct. 3-9, Santa Fe/ABQ, NM  TBD
    Oct. 12, Joliet, IL University of St. Francis, 7 -  8:30 pm, San Damiano Hall, Main Campus, 500 Wilcox St. Joliet, IL, public, no charge



  • Calendar 2023

    2022-23 Month

    Event Details About Diane/HEAR US

     NC Piggies Blanket Events, Brevard, Morganton, Asheville

    DDN-canonBWDiane's Bio

    Diane's Facebook Page

    Diane's books: 
    Crossing the Line: Taking Steps to End Homelessness

    Changing the Paradigm of Homelessness

    Dismazed and Driven - My Look at Family Homelessness in America

    Diane's blog: MEDIUM

    Diane's Awards:

    • 2022, Honorary membership, ODK, SUNY, Oneonta
    • 2015, NAEHCY, Best Targeted Campaign, Worn Out Welcome Mat - KS
    • 2015, Sisters of St. Francis, Joliet, IL, Mother Alfred Moes Award
    • 2014, University of St. Francis, Joliet, IL Sister Clare Award
    • 2013, Texas Homeless Network, Kathy Reid Award
    • 2012, National Association for Education of Homeless Children Youth, Sandra Neese Lifetime Achievement Award
    • 2012, The Education Center, Naperville, Kids’ Best Friend Award

    • 2012, Georgia Alliance to End Homelessness, Community Builder Award

    • 2012, Bridge Communities, Transforming Lives Award (YouTube video of her acceptance speech)

    • 2008, Naperville Church Women United, Human Rights Award

    • 2007, NAEHCY, Outstanding Media Award

    • 2006, Kane County (IL) Hidden Hero; and University of St. Francis Award of Merit


     1Dismazed/Driven virtual author talk, DLFF
    20, w/Pat Van Doren, Heritage Woods, Bolingbrook, IL


     Details on the Babes Page: Babes of Wrath Banned Book Tour

    Babes banned logo


     12, 7 - 8:30 pm, University of St. Francis, San Damiano Hall, Dismazed and Driven talk, free, public.1 USF details small





    24, Univ. Wisc. BASES class 3 - 4:30 pm


     1, 7 - 8:30 pm, DeKalb (IL) Public Library, Panel on Family Homelessness

    12, 10 a.m., Congressman Bill Foster Honoring Pat Van Doren, at Heritage House, Bolingbrook, IL

    December 21, noon - 9 pm, US Capitol, Memorial Blanket Project (www.memorialblanket.orgfor info)



    9, NCHE McKinney-Vento State Coordinator Conference, Washington, DC

    15, Office of Student Life conference, Newark, NJ 


    7, New Hampshire McKinney-Vento conference (virtual) 

    May  Filming, North Carolina

    Filming, North Carolina 

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