Honoring Black History Month
By Lowell Dempsey, Janet Firshein, February 26, 2018
More than 50 years after the civil rights movement, we’re reflecting on how our partners and others are working to reduce discrimination and increase health equity in the US. We’re inspired by the progress, but there’s still a lot of work to do. Here are three resources we’re learning from and sharing this month.
1. New Narratives of Hope This Black History Month–And Beyond
An NPR/Harvard survey funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation reveals disturbing new statistics about the prevalence of racism in America. Forty-five percent of black people, for example, say they have faced discrimination when trying to rent a room or apartment or buy a house. In this blog post, RWJF senior advisor Dwayne Proctor reflects on these statistics and the importance of using stories in the search for solutions.
2. How to Resolve Racially Stressful Situations
Howard Stevenson is a psychologist who directs Forward Promise, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grantee that helps boys and young men of color heal, grow, and thrive after experiencing trauma. Stevenson describes how he talked to his eight-year-old son about racism following the Trayvon Martin shooting and affirms that racial healing can emerge from telling stories and having frank conversations.
3. Tell Them We Are Rising: The Rich History of America’s HBCUs
This documentary details the history, rise, influence and future of the 101 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the US. It’s a powerful story about how these institutions have shaped history—including the civil rights movement—and the role they continue to play in American life and culture.