Hey everyone, it's Black History Month! This is a time for us to celebrate and honor the incredible contributions and achievements of Black individuals throughout history. This is an important part of our American story and should really be recognized and celebrated all year round.

One of the best ways to celebrate Black History Month is by educating yourself AND your children about the history and experiences of Black individuals. We can do this by reading books, watching movies, or engaging with media that highlights the struggles and triumphs of Black people throughout history. Maybe reading some of Maya Angelou’s wonderful poetry. A couple great movies I love are Hidden Figures and The Help. I personally will be spending time this month learning more about noteworthy Black female figures and their contributions. These resources can provide a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by the Black community, as well as the incredible resilience and perseverance that have been shown in the face of adversity. My kids and I had a great time last weekend taking a Black History tour at the local history museum. It was great to see them learning! Taking a trip to your local history museum is a great place to start when learning about Black History!

Another important way to get involved in Black History Month is to support Black-owned businesses. There are tons of them out there all you have to do is search for them on the internet. This could be anything from food and clothing shops to nail salons and home decor. We’re always looking for new places to shop and new restaurants to try! (If you have any recommendations for some good spots in Tennessee, let me know!)

Donating your time and resources to Black-owned and Black-run organizations is another way to support the Black community. This could include volunteering your time, making a monetary donation, or offering other forms of support to organizations that serve the Black community. Remember, when you are helping, you are happy!

Amplifying and listening to Black voices is another important way to celebrate Black History Month. This means paying attention to Black authors, artists, entertainers, and speakers and engaging with their work. Whether it's reading books, listening to podcasts, watching videos, or attending events, there are many ways to engage with Black voices and perspectives. By amplifying Black voices, we can help create a more inclusive and diverse cultural landscape and ensure that black perspectives are heard and valued. I’m downloading a new Black history podcast playlist to listen to this month that I’m so excited about.

Finally, using our own voices to advocate for anti-racism and equality is crucial to creating lasting change. This means speaking up when we witness discrimination and using our platforms, whether it be social media or in-person conversations, to raise awareness about important issues facing the Black community. It also means working to address our own biases and educating ourselves on how we can be better allies in the fight for equality.

Black History Month is a special time, but it's just the beginning. I want to challenge you to do something this month to learn and to celebrate, especially with your kids. We can all work towards a future where Black voices are more heard and valued and where Black history is celebrated and honored all year round. As we celebrate this month, let’s commit to working together to create a better world for all of us.

Your friend,