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Black History Month 2024: Celebrating Black Excellence

“The more you know of your history, the more liberated you are.”

Maya Angelou

February is more than just the second month of the year; it’s a dedicated time to honor and celebrate the profound impact of Black individuals throughout history. As we embark on Black History Month, it’s an opportunity not only to reflect on the struggles and triumphs of the past but also to embrace the vibrant tapestry of Black excellence that continues to shape our present and inspire our future.

Throughout history, Black individuals have displayed unparalleled resilience in the face of adversity. From the abolitionists who fought for freedom to the civil rights activists who advocated for equality, every step forward has been marked by unwavering determination. Black History Month allows us to pay homage to these heroes and heroines, recognizing their contributions to the betterment of society.

Black excellence extends across various fields, shaping the world in profound ways. In the arts, luminaries like Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, and James Baldwin have left an indelible mark. In the sciences, figures like Mae Jemison and George Washington Carver have paved the way for future innovators. Black History Month provides a platform to celebrate this diversity and highlight the achievements that have shaped our global landscape.

While Black History Month is a time of reflection, it’s also a call to action. It encourages us to break down barriers, challenge stereotypes, and actively contribute to a more inclusive future. By acknowledging and appreciating the accomplishments of the Black community, we take a step towards building a society that values diversity and equity.

As we commemorate Black History Month, let’s actively engage in learning, sharing, and celebrating. Attend local events, explore Black literature, art, and music, and participate in conversations that promote understanding and unity. Embrace the opportunity to educate ourselves on the history that has shaped our world and continues to influence our collective journey.

Black History Month is not just a calendar event; it’s a celebration of the enduring spirit, creativity, and resilience that defines the Black experience. By taking the time to learn, reflect, and celebrate, we contribute to a more inclusive and compassionate world where every individual’s story is acknowledged and valued. Join us in honoring Black history not just this month but every day, as we collectively shape a future that embraces the richness of diversity.

“History is not just facts and events. History is also a pain in the heart and we repeat history until we are able to make another’s pain in the heart our own.”

Julius Lester

Resources

Delve into the rich history, achievements, and contributions of Black individuals across various fields. Explore the profound impact on art, literature, science, and more.

History and Education:
2. The Black Experience Project (https://www.theblackexperienceproject.ca/)
3. The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (https://humanrights.ca/)
4. Ontario Black History Society (https://blackhistorysociety.ca/)
5. African American History Month (USA) (https://africanamericanhistorymonth.gov/)
Literature:
7. CanLit Guides – Black Canadian Literature (https://www.canlitguides.ca/black-canadian-literature/)
8. Hakim’s Bookstore (https://www.hakimsbookstore.com/)
9. A Different Booklist (https://www.adifferentbooklist.com/)
10. African American Literature Book Club (https://aalbc.com/)
Film and Documentaries:
12. Black Screen Office (https://blackscreenoffice.ca/)
13. CaribbeanTales Media Group (https://www.caribbeantalesmedia.com/)
14. National Film Board of Canada – Black Communities in Canada (https://www.nfb.ca/)
15. African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) (https://aafca.com/)
Music:
16. The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) (https://www.carasonline.ca/)
17. Black Canadian Music (https://www.blackcanadianmusic.com/)
18. The Remix Project (https://www.theremixproject.com/)
19. African Music Publishers Association (AMPAL) (https://www.ampal.com/)
Activism and Organizations:
20. Black Lives Matter – Toronto (https://blacklivesmatter.ca/)
21. The Black Business and Professional Association (BBPA) (https://www.bbpa.org/)
22. Federation of Black Canadians (https://www.fbcfcn.ca/)
23. NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) (https://www.naacp.org/)
Art and Culture:
24. AfroChic (https://afrochic.ca/)
25. Nia Centre for the Arts (https://niacentre.org/)
26. Black Artists’ Network in Dialogue (BAND) (https://www.bandgallery.com/)
27. National Museum of African American History and Culture (https://nmaahc.si.edu/)
Podcasts:
28. Media Girlfriends](https://www.mediagirlfriends.com/)
30. The Kitchen Table Collective](https://www.kitchentablecollective.ca/podcast)
News and Magazines:
32. ByBlacks (https://byblacks.com/)
33. The Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce (https://www.canadianbcc.ca/)
35. The Root (African American News) (https://www.theroot.com/)
Social Media and Online Communities:
37. Black In Canada (https://blackincanada.com/)
Health and Wellness:
39. Black Health Alliance (https://blackhealthalliance.ca/)
40. Black Mental Health Canada (https://blackmentalhealth.ca/)
41. WellNest Psychotherapy Services (https://www.well-nest.ca/)
42. National Medical Association (NMA – USA) (https://www.nmanet.org/)
Business and Finance:
43. Canadian Black Chamber of Commerce (https://blackchamber.ca/)
44. Black Business Initiative (BBI) (https://www.bbionline.org/)
45. Afro-Caribbean Business Network (ACBN) (https://www.acbnetwork.org/)
46. National Black Chamber of Commerce (NBCC – USA) (https://nationalbcc.org/)
Science and Technology:
47. Canadian Association of Black Journalists (https://www.cabj.ca/)
48. The Canadian Multicultural Inventors Museum (http://cmim.ca/)
49. Blacks in Technology – Toronto (https://www.bitontario.com/)
50. National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE – USA) (https://www.nsbe.org/)
Environment and Sustainability:
51. Soul of the Earth (https://www.souloftheearth.co/)
52. Black Environmental Initiative (https://www.blackenvironment.org/)
53. African Conservation Foundation (https://africanconservation.org/)
LGBTQ+:
54. Black Queer Youth (https://www.blackqueeryouth.org/)
56. Black CAP (Black Coalition for AIDS Prevention) (https://www.black-cap.com/)
57. National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC – USA) (https://nbjc.org/)
Mental Health:
58. Black Therapy Canada (https://blacktherapists.ca/)
59. Black Girls Gather (https://www.blackgirlsgather.org/)
60. R.I.S.E (Reaching Intelligent Souls Everywhere) (https://rise-edt.ca/)
61. Therapy for Black Girls (USA) (https://therapyforblackgirls.com/)
Parenting:
62. Black Moms Connection (https://blackmomsconnection.com/)
63. Mama’s in the 6ix (https://mamasinthe6ix.com/)
64. Black Daddies Club (https://www.blackdaddiesclub.com/)
65. National Black Child Development Institute (NBCDI – USA) (https://www.nbcdi.org/)
Religion and Spirituality:
66. African Methodist Episcopal Church in Canada (https://www.amechurch-canada.org/)
67. The Black Canadian Network (https://blackcanadiannetwork.com/)
68. National Black Catholic Congress (NBCC – USA) (https://nbccongress.org/)
Fashion:
69. Tru-Story Clothing (https://tru-story.com/)
70. Che Kothari (https://www.chekothari.com/)
71. House of Aama (https://www.houseofaama.com/)
72. Essence (African American Fashion) (https://www.essence.com/fashion/)
Food and Cooking:
73. Afroculinaria (https://afroculinaria.com/)
74.  Black Foodie (https://www.blackfoodie.co/)
75. Vegan Nigerian (https://vegannigerian.com/)
76. Black Culinary Association of Canada (https://blackculinaryassociation.com/)
77. Soul Food Therapy (USA) (https://soulfoodtherapy.com/)
Travel:
78. Black Canadian Travel (https://blackcanadiantravel.com/)
79. Black Travel Movement – Canada (https://blacktravelmovement.net/)
80. Nomadness Travel Tribe (USA) (https://www.nomadnesstv.com/)
81. Travel Noire (African Diaspora) (https://travelnoire.com/)
Social Justice:
82. Black Legal Action Centre (BLAC) (https://www.blacklegalactioncentre.ca/)
83. Black Youth Helpline (https://blackyouth.ca/)
84. Equal Justice Initiative (USA) (https://eji.org/)
85. Black Voters Matter Fund (USA) (https://www.blackvotersmatterfund.org/)
Business/News:
87. Black Business Directory – Canada (https://blackbusinessdirectory.ca/)
88. Black-Owned Business Network – USA (https://officialblackwallstreet.com/)
89. Buy Black Canada (https://buyblackcanada.ca/)
90. National Black Arts (USA) (https://www.nationalblackarts.com/)
91. Blavity (Black News & Culture) (https://blavity.com/)
Educational Resources:
92. African Studies Association (https://africanstudies.org/)
93. National Council for Black Studies (USA) (https://www.ncbsonline.org/)
94. The Afritorial – African Literature (http://afritorial.com/)
95. Zinn Education Project – Teaching People’s History (https://www.zinnedproject.org/)
Mentorship and Support:
96. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada – Black Youth Program (https://www.bigbrothersbigsisters.ca/)
97. 100 Black Men of America (https://100blackmen.org/)
98. Black Girls Code (https://www.blackgirlscode.com/)
99. Boys and Girls Clubs of America – Black Achievers Program (https://www.bgca.org/)
100. The Mentorship Challenge (Canada) (https://www.thementorshipchallenge.com/)
101. The Steve Fund – Mental Health Support for Students of Color (USA) (https://www.stevefund.org/)

Tools for Equity

ICA’s Tools for Equity training program for businesses and organizations, addresses racial disparities and employment barriers faced by immigrants, refugees, and communities of colour in the Capital Regional District.

Bystander Intervention Training

The Bystander Intervention Training Program is designed to equip individuals and organizations with practical skills and tools to be anti-racist allies and create cultures that promote dignity.

Racial Justice

We have to speak out against systemic racism and discrimination and move from being non-racist to anti-racist. We need to make commitments and take clear actions against racism.

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GVLIP Anti-Racism at Work

Anti-Racism at Work is everyone's job. Organizations from small to large will find local resources to help implement anti-racism strategies at work.