black history month events

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TSOCG presents day two of Black History Month 2014: “The Divine Nine”

These are the nine historically Black Greek Letter Organizations (BGLOs) that together comprise the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC). The NPHC was created in an era when racial segregation and disenfranchisement plagued African Americans. The establishment of each of these organizations bore witness to the fact that despite hardships African Americans refused to accept a status of inferiority.

The organization’s stated purpose and mission in 1930:

“Unanimity of thought and action as far as possible in the conduct of Greek letter collegiate fraternities and sororities, and to consider problems of mutual interest to its member organizations.”

Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.: Founded December 4, 1906 at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Its founders are known as the “Seven Jewels” and its principles are “manly deeds, scholarship, and love for all mankind.” Its motto is First of All, Servants of All, We Shall Transcend All.

Alpha Phi Alpha evolved into a primarily service-oriented organization and provided leadership and service during the Great Depression, both World Wars, and during the Civil Rights Movement. The organization addressed (and still addresses) social issues such as apartheid, AIDS, urban housing, and other economic, cultural, and political issues of interest to people of color. The Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial and World Policy Council are programs of Alpha Phi Alpha. It also conducts philanthropic programming initiatives with March of Dimes, Head Start, Boy Scouts of America, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

Notable members of Alpha Phi Alpha: Jamaican Prime Minister Norman Manley, Nobel Prize winner Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Olympian Jesse Owens, Justice Thurgood Marshall, United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young, singer Lionel Richie and Atlanta mayor Maynard Jackson.

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.:Founded January 15, 1908 at Howard University in Washington, D.C. by a group of twenty students, led by Ethel Hedgeman Lyle.  Alpha Kappa Alpha was incorporated on January 29, 1913.

After the organization’s establishment over a century ago, Alpha Kappa Alpha has helped to improve social and economic conditions through community service programs. Members have improved education through independent initiatives, contributed to community-building by creating programs and associations, such as the Mississippi Health Clinic, and influenced federal legislation by Congressional lobbying through the National Non-Partisan Lobby on Civil and Democratic Rights. The sorority works with communities through service initiatives and progressive programs relating to education, family, health, and business.

Notable members of Alpha Kappa Alpha: actress Loretta Devine, actress Phylicia Rashad, author Toni Morrison,  and vocalist Cassandra Wilson.

Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.: Founded as Kappa Alpha Nu on the night of January 5, 1911 by ten African-American college students at Indiana University Bloomington.

The motto of the fraternity is, “Achievement in every field of human endeavor”. During this time there were very few African-American students at the majority white campus at Bloomington, Indiana and they were a small minority due to the era of the Jim Crow laws. Many African-American students rarely saw each other on campus and were discouraged or prohibited from attending student functions and extracurricular activities by white college administrators and fellow students. African-American students were denied membership on athletic teams with the exception of track and field. The racial prejudice and discrimination encountered by the founders strengthened their bond of friendship and growing interest in starting a social group.

Some believe the Greek letters Kappa Alpha Nu were chosen as a tribute to Alpha Kappa Nu, but the name became an ethnic slur among racist factions. Founder Elder Watson Diggs, while observing a young initiate compete in a track meet, overheard fans referring to the member as a “kappa alpha nig”, and a campaign to rename the fraternity ensued. The resolution to rename the group was adopted in December 1914, and the fraternity states, “the name acquired a distinctive Greek letter symbol and KAPPA ALPHA PSI thereby became a Greek letter fraternity in every sense of the designation.” Kappa Alpha Psi has been the official name since April 15, 1915.

Notable Members of Kappa Alpha Psi: Gospel musician Byron Cage, comedian Cedric “The Entertainer” Kyles, and Civil Rights leader Ralph D. Abernathy.

Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.:  Founded on November 17, 1911 by three Howard University juniors, Edgar Amos Love, Oscar James Cooper and Frank Coleman, and their faculty adviser, Dr. Ernest Everett Just. Omega Psi Phi is the first predominantly African-American fraternity to be founded at a historically black university.

Since its founding, Omega Psi Phi’s stated purpose has been to attract and build a strong and effective force of men dedicated to its Cardinal Principles of manhood, scholarship, perseverance, and uplift.

In 1924, at the urging of fraternity member Carter G. Woodson, the fraternity launched Negro History and Literature Week in an effort to publicize the growing body of scholarship on African-American history. Encouraged by public interest, the event was renamed “Negro Achievement Week” in 1925 and given an expanded national presence in 1926 by Woodson’s Association for the Study of Negro Life as “Negro History Week.” Expanded to the full month of February from 1976, this event continues today as Black History Month.

Since 1945, the fraternity has undertaken a National Social Action Program to meet the needs of African Americans in the areas of health, housing, civil rights, and education. Omega Psi Phi has been a patron of the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) since 1955, providing an annual gift of $350,000 to the program.

Notable members of Omega Psi Phi: poet Langston Hughes, comedians Rickey Smiley, Steve Harvey, and Bill Cosby.

Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.: Founded on January 13, 1913, by 22 collegiate women at Howard University. These women wanted to use their collective strength to promote academic excellence and to provide assistance to persons in need. The first public act of Delta Sigma Theta was the Women’s Suffrage March in Washington D.C., March 3, 1913. Delta Sigma Theta was incorporated as a perpetual body in 1930. Today, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority is the largest African-American Greek-lettered organization.

Since its founding, Delta Sigma Theta has been at the forefront of creating programming to improve political, education, and social and economic conditions. Delta Sigma Theta has been pivotal in assisting the African American and International communities through education, lobbying, and economic initiatives, including Delta Days at the State and Nation’s Capitol, Delta Days at the United Nations, Summits and various conferences which focus on pertinent issues of the day. In addition to establishing independent programming, The Sorority consistently collaborates with community and corporate organizations Such as Chase (bank), Habitat for Humanity, Coca-Cola, Wal-Mart, Lawry’s, and General Electric to further its programming goals.

Notable members of Delta Sigma Theta: actress Keshia Knight Pulliam, singers Natalie Cole and Roberta Flack, and athlete Wilma Rudolph.

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. Founded at Howard University in Washington, D.C. on January 9, 1914, by three young African-American male students with nine other Howard students as charter members. The fraternity’s founders (A. Langston Taylor, Leonard F. Morse, and Charles I. Brown) wanted to organize a Greek letter fraternity that would exemplify the ideals of Brotherhood, Scholarship and Service while taking an inclusive perspective to serving the community as opposed to having an exclusive purpose.

The fraternity exceeded the prevailing models of Black Greek-Letter fraternal organizations by being the first to establish alumni chapters, youth mentoring clubs, a federal credit union, chapters in Africa, and a collegiate chapter outside of the United States, and is the only fraternity to hold a constitutional bond with a predominantly African-American sorority, Zeta Phi Beta (ΖΦΒ), which was founded on January 16, 1920, at Howard University in Washington, D.C., through the efforts of members of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity.

Notable members of Phi Beta Sigma: George Washington Carver, James Weldon Johnson, Kwame Nkrumah, and activist Hosea Williams.

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.:  Founded on January 16, 1920 by five collegiate women (Arizona Cleaver Stemmons, Myrtle Tyler Faithful, Viola Tyler Goings, Fannie Pettie Watts, and Pearl Anna Neal) at Howard University. The organization was founded “on the simple belief that sorority elitism and socializing should not overshadow the real mission for progressive organizations – to address societal mores, ills, prejudices, poverty, and health concerns of the day.”

In 1948, Zeta Phi Beta became the first Greek-letter organization to charter a chapter in Africa (in Monrovia, Liberia). It was also the first organization to establish adult and youth auxiliary groups and centralize its operations in a national headquarters. Today, there are also chapters in U.S. Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Bahamas, Japan, Korea, Barbados, and Haiti.

Zeta Phi Beta is the only NPHC sorority that is constitutionally bound to a fraternity, Phi Beta Sigma. The sorority also maintains connections to several organizations including the NPHC, American Diabetes Association, March of Dimes, American Cancer Society, American Red Cross, National Council of Negro Women, and the United Negro College Fund.

The sorority also holdsZeta Day on the Hill, which provides an opportunity for Zetas to exercise another level of civic responsibility by learning the protocols for interacting with and the knowledge needed to maximize engagement with congressional representatives. As members of a “Community Conscious-Action Oriented” organization, Zetas schedule meetings with their representative or their representative’s designee to discuss, during brief sessions, issues of interest to the local, state and national Zeta membership.

On January 25, 2001, Zeta Phi Beta was granted Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) status with the United Nations.

Notable members of Zeta Phi Beta: author Zora Neale Hurston, singer Sarah Vaughan, comedienne Sheryl Underwood, singers Minnie Riperton and Towanda Braxton.

Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.:  Founded on November 12, 1922 at Butler University in Indianapolis, Indiana by seven young educators. It was incorporated within the state of Indiana in December 1922 and became a national collegiate sorority on December 30, 1929, when a charter was granted and the Alpha chapter was established.

The sorority is a non-profit whose aim is to enhance the quality of life within the community. Public service, leadership development and the education of youth are the hallmark of the organization’s programs and activities.

Founded in the midst of segregation, Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. is the only sorority of the four historically African-American sororities in the NPHC that was established on a predominantly white campus.

Notable members of Sigma Gamma Rho: singer Kelly Price, rapper MC Lyte, and actress Victoria Rowell.

Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc.: Founded on September 19, 1963 at Morgan State University (then Morgan State College) in Baltimore, Maryland. 

The fraternity was founded in the midst of the Civil Rights Movement even though there were already four other prominent historically Black fraternities at the time. Influences included organizations such as the Black Panthers, SNCC, and figures such as Malcolm X and Stokely Carmichael. The Iota founders were distinguished from their peers as they were all non-traditional students. Being anywhere from three to five years older than their peers, many had served in the military, worked full-time while attending classes full-time, and had families with small children. These elements gave the Founders a different perspective than the typical fraternity member.

A key appeal of Iota Phi Theta is that, as an organization, it refuses to have its members bind themselves to a defined fraternal image but celebrates the individuality of its members.

Notable members of Iota Phi Theta: actor T.C. Carson and athlete Calvin Murphy.

The importance of the “Divine Nine”: During the time in which the first BGLO was established, African Americans across the country were faced with the harsh realities of race-related discrimination. As a result of the various situations that stemmed from these discriminatory practices, various organizations established by the African American community began to surface and some of them were Black Greek Letter Organizations. Since 1906—the founding year of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.—nine fraternities and sororities (affectionately known as the Divine Nine) have had the privilege of developing and establishing chapters throughout the United States and the world. The establishment of these brotherhoods and sisterhoods brought together men and women who were passionate about the goals and ideals of their organization and made a commitment to work together to make a difference in the world in which they lived.

More than this, they gave networking opportunities and all of the other benefits of being a member of a Greek-Letter Organization to people who were barred entry from the historically White Greek-Letter Organizations. The NPHC organizations stand apart from all others in that at their core stand scholarship and service to the community.

I am a proud and active member of an NPHC sorority myself, the lovely, alluring, remarkable, and oh SOOOOOO SWEET Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. I love my organization, and I love my fellow black greeks…the history of all of our organizations shine brightly in all of our missions.

laugh.grow.change.[serendipity]

297. Hazel organiced a “Black history month” event with all the black demigods(greek and roman) and - after Percy and Annabeth talked to the rest of the camp about them - magicians. Sadie is invited too, because - even when she’s white skinned and blond - she’s a biracial girl… A whitepassing PoC. They sang “Lift every voice and sing”, shared their experiences with racism and created a “Way of action” against racism at camps and a mitin about anti-racism with the help of the other PoC demigods.

Submitted by anonymous.

Black Gamers Revolution 24-Hour Livestream Fundraiser for Flint

BGR will be hosting our first ever 24 hour livestream on TwitchTV for Black History Month. In addition to hosting our event, we will be running a fundraiser to provide support to those in Flint, Michigan who are suffering at an everyday basis due to the water system being contaminated with extremely high levels of lead. 

The team behind BGR will not stand idle to those in need. Their cries for survival and justice will not go unheard. Within this event, we will raise funds to contribute to the efforts of those who provide the essentials Flint residents need to survive while their water remains undrinkable. For 24 hours consecutively, @blackpoeticinjustice will stream gameplay such as Overwatch, For Honor, and other popular titles while he raises awareness.

While @blackpoetininjustice streams, the BGR Broadcast Team will also have the option to contribute to cause by streaming within the timeframe of the event. They will push for donations as well as bringing about awareness to their followers. Not only will this promote the cause, but this will also add exposure to the Black gaming community and display unity within the Black community as a whole.

Our long term goal as a movement is to provide funds and express support to causes that help our community, the Black community. 

This is our chance to achieve that goal and show the world that we’re more than just gamers. 

We’re Black gamers. 

We’re Black gamers that support our community. 

- BGR Team

awareness week...?

so, following a discussion regarding kin awareness month (this one: https://the-stars-within-us.tumblr.com/post/162026692261/kin-awareness-month-is-not-needed) and after recieving many of the same suggestion, i have been thinking of modifying the event again to span a single week.

there are a number of reasons of this: first being that i don’t want the scope of the event to compare to more serious and important events such as mogai/lgbt pride or black history month, and second because i think it would be hard to keep up such an event for 31 days! that’s a seriously long time.

why a week? seven days is a good chunk of time, not too long and not too short. everyone would have a chance to participate. it would not infinge on any other events of greater scale (to my knowledge).

many suggested a day, but i would rather not go that short. my main concern is so eone not remembering or being unable to long in on the day and missing the event entirely.

i have stated before that i want this event to be for all kin, and i don’t want anyone feeling uncomfy with the set up or anxious about being open with their support and interest. 

so, a week is my proposition. is this more agreeable to everyone? 

Hello everyone!!

I just wanted to let yall know that some good has come out of this recent discourse…

I have created a new blog with the goal of showcasing OC’s of color MADE by Poc!!

We have alot to do before its up and running, ( like a THEME lmao ) so any help you can offer would be appreciated!!

But the main thing we need is CONTENT and ARTISTS/WRITERS of color who’d like to be involved!! 

Please reblog and share this post, and either in the tags or by IM’ing me or @fatalmirage directly! 

We plan on doing an event for Black History Month, which would showcase black oc’s or black coded oc’s!! I will keep you all updated!

Please go ahead and follow the blog!! We will NEED yalls support!!

Black History Month Discrimination At School

My name is Grace Duah and I’m a senior and SGA President at West Springfield High School in Virginia and I am a member of our newly founded Black Student Union(BSU). Every year our school, with a predominantly white majority, has a MANDATORY Black History Month Assembly. And this may sound good, but it is generally a cookie cutter version of the reality, spreading an undertone of racism doesn’t exist and Black History started with slavery. Every year, black students at our school have sat in silence during this performance and taken ,with an air of denial and pain,the reality that we lack a voice in something that is supposed to be representative of us and our situation. This year BSU decided to take a stand. We respectively asked to take the assembly from leadership and plan an event that would be truly representative of black people as well as an honest look into our reality. We planned for five months, even managing to get a former employee who marched alongside Dr. King in Selma to come talk about his experiences as a protestor during the civil rights movement. Finally we would have an assembly run by black people for black people that would not only help black students at our school, but promote diverse representation for all minorities in our school. However, this past Tuesday, our sponsor was informed by another teacher that the school Administration had decided to make the assembly optional and there would be one performance instead of two. This seems small, however the assembly is in a week and to make this decision would alter the event entirely and would give us only a week to prepare despite us preparing this event for months. Along with that, this event has been required for years and years ,when it is finally in the hands of black students, it no longer is essential. Also if the teacher had not informed our sponsor the admin had no intention of informing us of anything, because apparently we are valued so little in the school they didn’t even bother telling us despite it being our program. Lastly, when things are optional students will not come and everyone including administration knows this. Their intention was to sabotage this from the foundation. Wanting to go about this in as dignified way as possible, we contacted the administration hoping to set up a meeting and discuss their reasoning and how we can go about changing it. However, the meeting only proved to solidify our suspicions. The administration, especially the principal, was very short with us continuously cutting us off and calling us “hostile”. When we even tried to express our reasoning behind wanting this assembly so badly because of past racial injustices done against us, we were told “it’s Virginia so we should be used to it”.They even went as far a saying they wouldn’t want to force students to sit through an event they cared nothing about and had “no educational value”. In the end we got a “sorry"and a “maybe a change would be done”. So basically yeah you’re offended but this doesn’t matter anyways so we’ll just let this die. Beyond just the damage this whole situation has had on the assembly and it’s potential success, the mental and emotional damage has been far worse. A lot of black students at West Springfield feel under valued and unappreciated. They feel looked down upon, that people expect them to be nothing more than negative stereotypes and they have no voice to say anything against it. Some are even verbally abused to the point where their own self image is being damaged. You hear of the protests and incidents happening in the world regarding racism, but in our very own school kids are forced to deal with little acts of discrimination that make them feel less of a person and in result these students sometimes lash out. Many a times I personally have cried myself to sleep replaying words spewed to me in the halls. Despite being a predominantly white school, the N word is used often and in a derogatory manner to black students on a daily basis. At one point kids even tried to organize a “Gangsta Out” where they would all dress up as “ghetto” gang members to a basketball game. This assembly was our chance to show black people how we wanted to be seen. Not as “gangstas” or “ratchet” or whatever negative stereotype used to keep us down, but rather as beautiful intelligent people who have gone through things yet have overcome. People who have a voice. Yes many people think Black History Month is seperatist or a waste of time and regard the assembly in the same way, but what those people don’t understand is: Black History Month is about equality and unity. It’s about showing off the side of American History not seen in textbooks. In the same way Black Lives Matter is about lifting black people to be valued and respected in the same way as the white majority, Black History Month as well as this event was designed to do the same. At the end of the day Black History is American History and should be heard. It’s hard when you walk through school and feel like an outsider due to the color of your skin , and then feel like a person. Its hard when you open history textbooks and the only black people you see are slaves or in pain, and then feel valued . Validating the black history month assembly doesnt merely validate one event but it validates an entire people who are made to believe they are not good enough with no voice otherwise. Its about educating the youth on issues that face our world today. Its not anti anyone, rather its pro equality. Showing you can be of a different race and still have the world at your finger tips, we were under the impression the school wanted that message heard, but we were proven wrong. Not only did they prove they regarded us as whiney thugs by calling us hostile for speaking our minds and our hearts; but going as far as saying this event is not educational, when not only does this event highlight an aspect of history but they force us to sit through 3-4 pep rallies a year. I know our school would love it, if we continued to be silent and let this injustice occur,but no more. Enough is enough we are the next generation and we’re tired. Tired of working to find reasons to love ourselves in a sea of self-hate. Tired of working twice as hard to get half as much as our white peers. Tired of being told we are smart for a black girl or guy. Or that we talk like a white person. No more. Personally I am a proud young black woman, with melanin skin that reflects the sun and no longer will I sit aside as injustice is being made. I am writing this post on behalf of every black student in my school, as well as every black student who has been made to feel like their feelings are less important. That their history is not valid. That they are not intelligent people destined for greatness. We plan on doing whatever it takes to get this decision repealed and discrimination and unfairness in our school exposed. West Springfield expected silence when they made this decision, but it is the age of the black revolution and they will learn it whether they like it or not: no JUSTICE no PEACE! We are black kids and we will not be silenced✊🏿✊🏾✊🏽

6

Saturday FEBUARY 13th in honor of black history month me and my friend Nakel Smith did our first ever event together which was a giveaway at Westchester skatepark in Los Angeles, CA

We just wanted to show everyone that not every young black man is negative, also just give back to our people in the community as well, thanks to  the whole Hardies hardware team and “IC” @illegalcivilization for showing up and giving to the people as well

We didn’t do this on the intent to make money or to gain anything, strictly for the love and fun of a good time and this was the end result as you can see it was “lit”!  

Oh yea btw, for the record, we broke the record 400-500 people showed up this is word from the park enforcer himself, even though the city didn’t want us to go through with it… This was more people then on opening day, just some young dudes straight out of south central with goal to chase

Video recap come soon.
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https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfbcu8BWInSO3edhFGcDSXA

Black History Month is here! And we’re excited to start this blog up, so what better way than to celebrate Black History Month with our black OCs? 

This is an event for Black creators, by Black creators. This month will be all about showcasing our Black OCs and sharing their personalities, goals, interests, love interests, friendships and so on through whichever medium you fancy: fanart, fanfic, music, screenshots, edits, gifs, etc.~

Week One: Will be all about your OCs’ backstories, including their birthplace, culture, family, experiences, and just about anything that happened in their past that shaped them into who they are. 

Week Two: This week, will be focused on your characters’ personality and traits. What do they believe in? What are the favorite things to eat and drink? Do they have hobbies? If so, what kind? What are the little details that make your character distinctly them? Let us know!

Week Three: Love will be the main focus of this week. Share about your Black OCs’ love interests. How do they get along? What’s the dynamic of the relationship? Is your OC monogamous or polyamorous? Pan or ace? If your character is aromantic, then focusing on friendships and platonic love is fine too! Any and all forms of love are welcomed and appreciated, so show us what you’ve got.

To make sure we see your work, put posts and reblogs under the tag:    bhmoc event

You may also submit directly to us! Smash that submit button and attach your work and a description!

Let’s get into formation and make this month a memorable one.

graphics created by: fatalmirage

Images provided by: elfyourmother, giwatafiya, belowbedlam, blkwonderwoman, bunabi, fatalmirage