By now, we have all heard the phrase "representation matters" and we have seen the cute reaction videos of little Black babies seeing a Disney princess that looks like them for the first time. Representation in the media gives children (and adults) a window to a world filled with possibilities. This same logic is why supporting Black businesses and non-profit organizations is so important. These are the places that are often created specifically to meet the needs of Black children, people, and families. This Black History Month, here are some easy ways to support Black-owned non-profit organizations and businesses:
Learn Your History
First, learn about your history. Atlanta is full of historical landmarks, museums, and events that honor and celebrate all eras of Black history. Auburn Avenue is a great place to start with the APEX Museum, the Auburn Avenue Research Library, and the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park all within walking distance of each other. In other parts of the city, you can find a dance performance by the Alvin Ailey Dancers or a theatrical performance of Mufaro’s Beautiful Daughters: An African Tale.
Support Black Authors
For every age and stage of development, there are books that depict history in a way that children can understand while imagining what they can be in the future. Change Sings by Amanda Gorman, I Am Enough by Grace Byers, and Dream Big, Little One and Little Legends by Vashti Harrison are great books to start with to inspire children, especially young girls.
Donate and Spend Your Money
When you find something that speaks to you, buy it, make an appointment, or donate toward the cause. Black businesses and nonprofits are often run by small teams and have less access to capital, so every dollar counts. Donating to Black-owned non-profit organizations or buying from Black businesses that donate their profits helps to invest in the Black community as a whole.