Faith & Family

Spelman Alumnae Launch $1 Million Fundraising Initiative

Spelman Fundraising Initiative
Spelman College Class of 1974 alumnae mark their upcoming 50th anniversary by committing to raise $1 million to address the most urgent student needs.

ATLANTA, GA – Taking a major step beyond merely reuniting for their 50th anniversary since walking across the stage as graduates of Spelman College, leaders of the class of 1974 have opted to give back to their alma mater and its current students, having developed and launched the national “Women for Golden Futures” (WFGF) fundraising initiative.

With their set goal to raise $1 million dollars annually in philanthropic donations within the next year, the group is rallying alumnae friends of Spelman, Black female entrepreneurs, and those who want to make a difference to unite and invest in, affirm, and support the nation’s young Black women who will positively transform the world. The funds raised through the campaign will go directly to the college. They will be used specifically for the Women for Golden Futures Scholarship and the Student Support Fund for those deserving young women whose education and futures are at risk due to a shortage of financial resources.

“This is a unique effort that welcomes supporters to contribute to helping fulfill the dreams and aspirations of our nation’s coming generations of Black women leaders,” says Mildred Whittier, WFGF campaign spokesperson. “Anyone is invited to partner with us. One may not necessarily be an alumna of Spelman College, but all of us have a keen awareness of the need, as well as the critical importance of uplifting our young Black women—especially in times like these,” she added.

“Our heartfelt intent is to help anchor our young women by providing financial assistance to cover vital costs like housing, food insecurity, technology equipment, books, medical attention, childcare, transportation, school fees and more,” Whittier relates further. “While the College certainly works hard to secure funding for emergency student assistance, we want to step up and do our part to fill the gap, and make sure that that funding is never depleted so they can stay in the classroom and continue their educational journeys. If not us, then whom?”

For more information and to give to the “Women for Golden Futures” campaign, visit: www.womenforgoldenfutures.org. Specify Women for Golden Futures as the donor designation. Or, to contribute by mail, make all checks payable to:

Spelman College
Designate in Memo:  Women for Golden Futures
Mail to: Office of Annual Giving, Spelman College
ATTN: WFGF

350 Spelman Lane SW, Box 1551
Atlanta, GA 30314

Spelman College is a tax-exempt organization defined by section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Gifts to the College are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Founded in 1881, Spelman College is a leading liberal arts college widely recognized as the global leader in educating women of African descent. Located in Atlanta, Georgia, Spelman is the country's leading producer of Black women who complete Ph.D.’s in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The College’s status is confirmed by U.S. News & World Report, which ranked Spelman No. 51 among all liberal arts colleges, No. 19 for undergraduate teaching, No. 5 for social mobility among liberal arts colleges, and No. 1 for the 16th year among historically Black colleges and universities.

Notable Spelman alumnae include actress Esther Rolle of Good Times; local radio personality and journalist Traci Cloyd; archivist and founder of The Black Archives - Dorothy Jenkins Fields; actress Keshia Knight Pulliam; actress Danielle Deadwyler; social media influencer and multi-talented performer Lynae Vanee; author Alice Walker; political leader Stacey Abrams; lawyer, minister, and activist Bernice King; and corporate business leader Rosalind Brewer

To learn more, please visit spelman.edu and @spelmancollege on social media.

 


Happy Father's Day 2023: First and Always

Beige Floral Scrapbook Father's Day Instagram Post

Father’s Day is a special day dedicated to honoring the father figures in our lives. It is a day to celebrate and appreciate the love, guidance, and support that fathers provide. On this day, we take the time to express our gratitude and show our love for our dads and father figures.

The origins of Father’s Day can be traced back to the early 20th century. It was first celebrated in the United States in 1910 when a woman named Sonora Smart Dodd wanted to honor her father, who had raised her and her siblings as a single parent. She proposed the idea of a day to celebrate fathers, and the first Father’s Day was celebrated in Spokane, Washington on June 19, 1910.

Since then, Father’s Day has become a popular holiday around the world. It is celebrated on different dates in different countries, but the sentiment remains the same – to honor and appreciate the role of fathers in our lives.

On Father’s Day, families often gather together to spend time with their dads. This may involve going out for a special meal, giving gifts, or simply spending time doing activities that the father enjoys. It is also a time to reflect on the positive impact that fathers have on their children’s lives and to express gratitude for their love and support.

Father’s Day can be a difficult time for those who have lost their fathers or who have strained relationships with them. It is important to remember that not all families are the same and that Father’s Day can be celebrated in many different ways. Some may choose to honor father figures who are not biologically related or to celebrate the role of single mothers who have fulfilled both parental roles.

Whatever your situation may be, Father’s Day is a reminder of the importance of family and the love that we share with those who have helped shape us into the people we are today. So, take the time to appreciate your father and father figures this Father’s Day, and let them know just how much they mean to you.


Celebrating Juneteenth: 5 Facts You Should Know

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American history will forever remember the 46th President of the United States, Joseph R. Biden, officially signed into law a Juneteenth National Independence Day on June 17, 2021. Juneteenth is short for June 19. On that day in 1865, U.S. Major General Gordon Granger notified the enslaved African Americans in Texas that they were free, or at least that is the big lie, so many of us were told and have repeated ad nauseam.

For 158 years, blacks in Texas have celebrated this holiday. One woman, Opal Lee, made it her life's work to see that Juneteenth became a national holiday in the United States. It took her decades, but she accomplished her mission. She is proof that persistence wins and the power of one person can move mountains.

If you don't understand anything else about Juneteenth, know that its history is messy, brutal, painful, and shameful. Depending on your ethnicity, age, and academic training, you might know a lot about Juneteenth, or you might know very little. Either way, the establishment of Juneteenth as a national holiday has triggered interest and much-needed conversation about the Civil War, Reconstruction, reparations, and the vestiges of anti-black racism that remain in society.

Here are five facts you should know when celebrating Juneteenth:

1.    Blacks knew they were free BEFORE U.S. Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865.

In his article, The Hidden History Of Juneteenth, historian Gregory P. Downs documents a conversation with former slave Felix Haywood. He was one of more than 2,300 former slaves interviewed during the Great Depression by members of the Federal Writers' Project, a New Deal agency in the Works Progress Administration (WPA).

"We knowed what was goin' on in [the war] all the time," said Haywood, "We all felt like heroes and nobody had made us that way but ourselves."

Felix-Haywood
Felix Haywood




2.    The last of the enslaved people were not free upon the legal notification of the emancipation of blacks in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865.

Proclamations, pronouncements, and declarations did not free enslaved Black people. Some stubborn Texans continued to keep blacks in bondage months after Granger and some 2,000 Union soldiers rode into Texas.

Remember the Emancipation Proclamation freed enslaved people in the Confederate States still in rebellion in 1863 (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, and North Carolina), but not those in North-South border states. Blacks remained enslaved in Maryland, Delaware, Missouri, and Kentucky for almost six months after Juneteenth because their state legislatures rejected the 13th Amendment after Congress passed it in January 1865. Slavery was legally banned upon the ratification of the 13th Amendment in December 1865.

Also, note that Native American territories were not subject to U.S. jurisdiction in the matter of slavery. Consequently, after Juneteenth 1865, about 10,000 blacks remained enslaved among five prominent Native American tribes --- the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminole. It would also be a year later before enslaved blacks were freed from Native American territories. So some of you need to think on that when you hear a black person brag about having "good hair" because they have Indians in their family. [Insert side-eye.]

3. President Abraham Lincoln was not an abolitionist.

As a candidate for the U.S. Senate, Lincoln was accused of supporting "negro equality" by his opponent, Stephen Douglas. On September 18, 1858, in Charleston, Illinois, Lincoln clarified his position during a debate.
 

"I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and Black races," said Lincoln. He also said he opposed Blacks having the right to vote, to serve on juries, to hold office and to intermarry with whites.

So, don't get it twisted, President Lincoln freed enslaved blacks not out of benevolence but for political reasons and as a war tactic. If the secessionist Confederate States had accepted Lincoln's Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation in September 1862, enslaved blacks would have remained in legal bondage. Still, since the stubborn Southerners refused to give up, Lincoln took away their best asset, the enslaved blacks.

4. The Compromise of 1877 marked the end of the Reconstruction Era and resulted in the dismantling of much of the progress of African Americans.

Despite Black Codes and Jim Crow Laws enacted after the Emancipation Proclamation, newly emancipated African Americans made tremendous progress. Blacks ran for political office, opened schools, and started businesses.
           
During this period of Reconstruction (1865-1877), Blacks were members of the Republican Party, and the Democrats were the Party of slaveholders. Republican Rutherford B. Hayes and Democrat Samuel Tilden were candidates for President of the United States. The election results were highly disputed, much like what the country is still experiencing since the presidential election of 2020. During a secret meeting, an unwritten deal was made; Democrat Samuel Tilden agreed to allow Republican Rutherford B Hayes to become President of the United States if Hayes would agree to pull the troops from the South that were protecting emancipated Blacks.

The shock of the violence of the January 6, 2021 insurrection at the White House was mild in comparison to the terror, death, and destruction heaped upon Blacks after the troops were pulled from the South. Yep, the Republicans and the Democrats. [Insert side-eye, again.]


5. While June 19, 1865, symbolizes our national day of observance of the end of slavery, those of us in Florida should know our state's Emancipation Day is May 20, 1865.

After the end of the Civil War, on May 10, 1865, Union Brigadier General Edward M. McCook arrived in Tallahassee to take possession of the capital from Southern rebels. On May 20, 1865, after official control of the region was transferred to Union forces, he declared the Emancipation Proclamation in effect. That same day an announcement arrived in Tallahassee sent by Major General Quincy A. Gillmore via train from Jacksonville. General Gillmore's Special Order Number 63 noted that "the people of the black race are free citizens of the United States."

 

In conclusion:

It is incumbent upon us to ensure the true history of Emancipation Day in Florida, Juneteenth, and the Reconstruction Amendments are taught despite legislation enacted and practices implemented to whitewash and in some cases eliminated. When necessary, we must teach our children history outside of the traditional public and private school setting. 

With the expeditious bipartisan approval of the 117th Congress to make Juneteenth a national federal holiday, let's always be mindful of what this holiday represents and the progress yet to be made for equitable treatment of Black people in America. Let's not allow Juneteenth to become just another day off from work and school. Let us demonstrate the proper homage to our ancestors. Let's share our history not from the lens of trauma porn but from a perspective of pride in the achievements of our ancestors and commitment to duplicate their success despite obstacles and deception.
 

(This post was originally published on June 19, 2021.)

 


Remembering: Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott

Rosa Parks mugshot
Rosa Parks mugshot, Montgomery, AL, 12/01/1955

On a public bus in Montgomery, Alabama, on this date, in 1955, Mrs. Rosa Parks had enough. On this date Mrs. Parks refused to give up her seat to a white man. She was already seated in the “colored” section of the bus, but the “whites” section was full. It was customary for Blacks to give up their seat for whites, but Mrs. Parks was not feeling compliant that day. She was not tired as she is frequently depicted in historical recounting of the incident, at least not physically. She was tired of the denigrating treatment of Black customers who used the public transportation system in Montgomery Alabama. She had enough.

Unbeknownst to many today, prior to Mrs. Parks’ arrest, Black women had already started organizing a protest through a group called the Women's Political Council or WPC. They started a couple of years earlier in 1953. In March 1955, a few months prior to the arrest of Rosa Parks, a teenager by the name of Claudette Colvin refuse to give up her seat. The people had enough.

The Montgomery bus boycott would last 381 days from December 5, 1955, through December 20, 1956. Two years after the Montgomery Bus Boycott began, Mrs. Parks and her husband, Raymond, lost their job jobs and received numerous death threats after her arrest. They later moved to Detroit, Michigan where he passed away in 1977 and she in 2005.

So, as you take a seat on a bus or an airplane, or even in a movie theater or restaurant, be mindful of the people who paved the way for you to casually move about in America. Also be sure to tell and retell American history.

 

 

 


Giving Thanks in 2022

Happy Thanksgiving2

On this fourth Thursday in November many will gather with family and friends for a sumptuous meal with all the trimmings. We will enjoy a Thanksgiving Parade and football game as we wait in anticipation for Black Friday sales and the Christmas shopping season. For others the reality of the challenges of life --- food insecurity, housing insecurity, illness, debt and loss of loved ones make this day difficult to navigate. Let's be mindful of that. 

The Thanksgiving holiday, as many have been taught, is based on a mythical dinner between Native Americans and Pilgrims. As with many American traditions, we have drifted so far away from the original intent that we basically just enjoy the day off from work or school without consideration of its origin or purpose. In the case of Thanksgiving that is a good thing. To the indigenous peoples of America, Thanksgiving, like Columbus Day is traumatic as it was not peaceful but violent and resulted in the death of their ancestors. Let's be mindful of that. 

As history is being whitewashed and in some cases erased, it is ever more crucial that we teach ourselves and our children the truth outside of their traditional classroom. So, know the facts about Thanksgiving. Continue to express gratitude and enjoy your time with family and friends even if you are trash-talking each other about a football game or a game of bid whist. 

Family is the foundation of our community. We thank you for joining us in this movement as we strengthen our family bonds for future generations. Give Thanks every day. Asé. Amen.

 

 


NAACP features Rev. Dr. Jimmie L. Bryant and Lady Estella King-Bryant on "Meet the Pastor"

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This evening, the Religious Affairs Committee of the Miami-Dade Branch NAACP will continue with their series on local religious leaders, Meet the Pastor.

This episode’s special guests are Rev. Dr. Jimmie L. Bryant, Senior Pastor and Lady Estella King-Bryant of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church of Liberty City. You don’t want to miss this lively, educational, engaging and motivational conversation. Pastor and Lady Bryant are inarguably one of the most forward-thinking religious couples around.

  • When: TONIGHT, July 11, 2022, 7:00 PM ET 
  • Where: Via Zoom & Facebook Live 
  • ZOOM Meeting ID: 853 4173 4135  Passcode: 640493 
  • Facebook Live: @MiamiDadeNAACP

What is Juneteenth? Know the Truth

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Juneteenth became a federal holiday when President Joseph Biden signed it into law on June 17, 2021. To much fanfare, the holiday has received much media coverage and commentary. This year, the actual date, June 19, fell on Father’s Day to the chagrin of many people who don’t support Juneteenth. Those same folks said Juneteenth overshadowed Father’s Day. It's crucial to know the real history of Juneteenth and separate fact from folklore. June 19 is a Texas holiday that has now become a holiday for America. Please watch this interview with Dr. Carl Mack to put the Civil War, the legal end of chattel slavery in America, and Juneteenth in context for an accurate understanding.

 

 


Celebrating Mamas + Mama Figures on this Mother's Day

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Happy Mother's Day to all mothers everywhere. If you can give your mother a hug or talk to her on the telephone, understand that you are blessed. If your mother is no longer with you in the natural, understand that you are blessed because she is always with you. Most of all, understand that you don't need a 'special' day to show love to your mother or anyone else. 


CNN Senior Legal Analyst and SiriusXM Talk Show Host Laura Coates Will Lead the Miami-Dade NPHC Virtual Voting Rights Symposium at 6 PM ET on Sunday, Feb. 20

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As Americans witness the advancement and passage of laws making it more difficult to vote throughout the nation, the Miami-Dade Chapter of the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) is hosting an important symposium on Sunday, February 20, 2022, 6 PM ET, “Voting Rights Act-The Power of Now: Why it’s important to you!” This virtual event is designed to educate, inform, mobilize and empower voters.  Visit https://tinyurl.com/36e6a7dj to pre-register for the event. 

The NPHC is a collaborative council of Black Greek-letter fraternities and sororities informally known as the “Divine Nine.” These organizations have historically played a significant role in fighting for civil rights in America and in Get Out The Vote initiatives. 

Laura Coates will lead this conversation on voting rights. She is a CNN senior legal analyst, SiriusXM talk show host, attorney, author and college professor. Other panelists are Congresswoman Frederica Wilson (AKA), State Senator Shevrin Jones (ΑΦΑ), State Representative Christopher Benjamin (ΩΨΦ), Wilkie D. Ferguson Jr. Bar Association Trelvis Randolph (ΦΒΣ), and Vanessa Woodard Byers (ΑΚΑ), creator and editor of Blogging Black Miami. 

Don’t miss this lively, engaging and informative discussion Sunday,  February 20, 2022, at 6 PM ET. Join the conversation by pre-registering at https://tinyurl.com/36e6a7dj. 

Dr. Keietta Givens (ΔΣΘ) is president of the Miami-Dade Chapter of the NPHC. 


CHI Partners with the American Dental Association to Offer Free Dental Care to Children 

CHI partners with the ADA

MIAMI – February 3, 2022 – Community Health of South Florida Inc. (CHI), is proud to host Give Kids A Smile Day on February 4, 2022. The annual event provides free dental screenings, cleanings, vanish, sealants and giveaways to children ages one to 16 years old.

“Every year we see children who have never been to the dentist on this day,” said Dr. Sheri Watson Hamilton, D.M.D., CHI Dental Director. “That’s a sad state of affairs, as lack of dental care can leave a child in pain or suffering with other health related consequences.”

CHI, a non-profit healthcare company has been a beacon of hope providing access to high quality healthcare for all regardless of insurance status, income level or background since 1971. To mitigate against the COVID-19 virus, various safety protocols have also been implemented to promote a safe, welcoming environment. As such, appointments will be required to ensure patient safety.

In partnership with the American Dental Association (ADA) Foundation, the Give Kids A Smile (GKAS) program provides oral healthcare to underserved children at no cost. Since 2003, local GKAS events have helped more than six million children get access to dental services with the help of dentists and healthcare organizations across the United States.

“With so much focus surrounding the pandemic, it is important to remember not to neglect routine healthcare,” said Dr. Watson-Hamilton. “Children should not be deprived of good oral health, which studies have shown can have a positive impact on the body’s overall health and wellbeing.”

CHI will be offering these free services for children at the following locations:

  • Doris Ison Health Center 10300 SW 216 St. Miami FL 33190

8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

  • West Perrine Health Center 18255 Homestead Ave. Perrine FL 33157

8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

  • South Miami Health Center 6350 Sunset Dr. South Miami FL 33143

8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

  • West Kendall Health Center 13540 SW 135thAve. Miami FL 33186

8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.

  • Martin Luther King Health Center 820 SW 1st. St. Homestead FL 33030

8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Appointments are required, call (786) 272-2100.