Black History Month has always had a special meaning. We somehow always end up giving it a remembrance. However, the meaning we give to it and how we acknowledge it changes over a course of time, as we grow older and have more experience.
“Since its inception, Black History Month has never been just a celebration of black America’s achievements and stories—it’s part of a deliberate political strategy to be recognized as equal citizens.” –Dr. Theodore R. Johnson
When we are kids, Black history Month is mainly associated with giving respect to our ancestors for their fights as African Americans. We hear stories of African American leaders and civil rights activists, read biographies or visit museums with our parents. As you get into your twenties the meaning of Black History Month takes a different path. You start looking at it as a time of both reflection and assessment. One reflects on the sacrifices that millions of our ancestral African Americans have made to gain the rights that we often take advantage of.
What I have learnt during the last few years is the reminder that Black History Month also means assessing my role at all possible levels to continue fighting for the rights of African Americans. It is important to reflect on how far African Americans have come yet how far they still need to go.
Black History Month makes me realize not only the trauma of African Americans but the efforts and the respective results gained, which adds so much more to the history than just the trauma. There was and is resilience and the talent that many possess. With ones’ growing age and experience you realize how Black History Month is not only meant to honor the people before us but to continuously celebrate the achievements of Black Americans in all fields. Here are a few ways you can celebrate Black history – all around the year.
- Learn about Noteworthy Black Figures
- Support Black-owned Businesses
- Donate to Charities that support Anti-Racism and Black Live Matter movement
- Read books by Black Authors
- Learn about Black women’s contributions
- Advocate for change
- Participate in events both online and physical
Something that all of us can do is helping out with events, participating in awareness campaigns, attending virtual events if being on-site is not a possibility. Black History Month is not only for awareness but to connect with our people on a deeper level, as it must remain a significant aspect of our lives.