As Instagram was muted this past #blackouttuesday, we all gave voice to black creatives, change makers and charitable causes that have been drowned out by privileged voices for centuries too long. But as more black people die at the hands of police, fall victim to hate crimes and experience more complications from COVID-19 than their white counterparts, we know that activism cannot stop here. This is just the beginning, and it’s up to each of us to understand the perspectives and stories of our black brothers and sisters.
&SISTERS was founded in the spirit of inclusivity, and we strongly condemn all acts of racism – violent or otherwise. We believe the best way forward is to lean in and listen to black voices with open ears, so we’ve rounded up a few of the most powerful black voices on the internet today. Listen, learn, repeat.
We can and will do better – and as one of the world’s most influential black leaders, Nelson Mandela, beautifully said, “no one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”
Support black charities: Black Minds Matter
One of our favourite anti-racist, UK-based charities is Black Minds Matter, an organisation dedicated to helping black people who struggle with their mental health. As with physical health, the black community has been disproportionately affected by mental ill health for centuries, but COVID-19 and recent police killings make this a particularly troubling time. Black Minds Matter provides much-needed mental health care to the black community by linking black people with black therapists, and it offers free sessions to those who are unable to fund themselves.
Support black artists: Sacrée Frangine
Based in France, creative duo Célia Amroune and Aline Kpade of Sacrée Frangine are childhood friends turned illustrators who use their art to explore modern themes. If you’ve logged onto Instagram at any point in the past few days, you’ve probably come across their beautiful pink #blacklivesmatter illustration, which has racked up just over 120k likes.
Support black podcasters: The Nod
We all love a good podcast, so next time you have a spare moment, stream The Nod, the podcast that “tells the stories of black life that don’t get told anywhere else.” Gimlet Media’s Brittany Luse and Eric Eddings explore everything from the battle between Cardi B and Nicki Minaj, to the story of a black dance troupe that travelled the USA in the 1940s. Give it a listen.
Support black filmmakers: Ava Duvernay
If you type ‘female directors’ into your Google browser, you’d be hard-pressed to find more than a few women of colour. But Ava Duvernay is paving the way for black women, as she worked on the critically-acclaimed film Selma and became the first black woman to be nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Director. Duvernay’s 2018 children’s film A Wrinkle in Time earned $100M USD at the box office, and her Netflix drama When They See Us, based on the 1989 Central Park jogger case, got her a staggering 16 Emmy Award nominations.
Support black activists: Munroe Bergdorf
British model Munroe Bergdorf made history when she became the first transgender model in the UK for L’Oréal, but she was controversially dropped after a racial row, leading many black activists to boycott the brand. Bergdorf has since used her platform to raise awareness for issues affecting people of colour, particularly members of the black LGBTQ+ community, winning her Cosmopolitan’s coveted ‘Changemaker of the Year’.
At &SISTERS, we’re always listening. If you have any stories, ideas or suggestions that you’d like to share with us, please get in touch.