Black History Month

Wed, 31 Oct 2018
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As we celebrate the last days of Black History Month where we all appreciate and acknowledge Black history culture, here at Impact we are wanted to mark the occasion with speaking with our creatives in the industry and ask them how they reflect on this month and what it means to them.

Chané Barnes – @cparies
Dancer – Bristol

Most people think it starts and ends with skin not realising that is the least of it every pep in my step every shine in my smile the inherent royalty running through my veins the coil of my hair and the width of my lips this blessing often mistaken for burden oh my how grateful and proud am I to have the pleasure to wake up every morning and be black, this blessing that few get to carry cannot be imitated or duplicated  a blessing given only by birth right passed down with wisdoms strength power greatness and MELANIN.”
Chané Barnes

DK – @OfficialDK100
Music Artist – London

“Black History:
Black history to me is a celebration of melanin.

All that we as black people have managed to overcome, but not only overcome but to innovate, to add value, to improve, to create.

History shows how much adversity that we have been exposed to but yet we have managed to always endure and to flourish regardless of the country or the time.

It’s a time to celebrate our existence, our diverse cultures, our arts and inventions, our skin tones and body types and afro hair.

For me Black History shows that we are fighters, we are survivors, we are overcomers we are scientists, artists, musicians, politicians, spiritually in tune.

This month celebrating our future highlights where we have come from, what we have gone through, survived and a clue to where we are going.
YES, to Black People.
YES, to Black History.”

Jamell René – @tailrmdelvn
Poet & Writer – London

An Ode to the Queens

“Black girl rocking, Melanin poppin
Afros and thick hips
Strong hearts and full lips
Mother of the earth
Hair dangling like a fairy-tale
Pulsating hearts that inspire revolutions
Creative lioness,
It’s you in the wild the king is runnin with
Love your natural essence
Embrace your own presence
As even after being ridiculed and played down it’s still your shade that they write songs about
Pretty brown, Pretty brown brown
Be beautiful like my hero,
My mother
As in our community our heroes don’t wear capes or even get the praise
they deserve
Yet they still put in the work
Remind you of your worth even when at your worse
Always did way more than was needed
it’s no secret
You’ve worried about all of us whether we were bloodline or not
Everyday keeps on flowing
Hearts been broken with moments yet our conversations are what keep me lifted
How did your heart get so big?
the world will never be enough for you
Nor appreciate all you really do
Forever my hero, Forever our mothers, Forever our sisters, Forever Queens
The realest out here!”
Jemell René

Julian E. Obubo – @julianobubo
Senior Campaign Manager (Manifest London) – London

What does being Black mean to me?
“For me being black means being aware that I’m part of a rich and long history that originated and is rooted in Africa. Being black means honouring the pain and sacrifice of those that have gone before me by taking pride in and celebrating my blackness. Being black means understanding past and current traumas but not being defined by them.
It means fighting overt and insidious attempts to erase, belittle or harm the Black Collective.
Being black means embracing the diaspora of blackness. It means tapping into that collective memory that unites West Africa and West Indies and West Philadelphia.
Black History Month is an important tool in pushing back against our erasure. It’s a necessary corrective against the harmful narrative that we don’t matter, or that we have not sacrificed or contributed our due.”
Julian E. Obubo

Helena Alyssa – @helzzzrich,
Social Media Manager & Blogger – London

“Growing up mixed always meant a bit of confusion my whole life by people asking – “what I am”. For me it meant getting a mixture of both worlds, the wild uncontrollable hair with the skinny nose. Having golden brown skin but fluently speaking an Eastern European language. My parents made sure I knew where I came from and that I wasn’t more one than I was of the other. Having such a large black family meant it was really important for me to learn about the history of that side, where my family came from and the struggles they had to go through because even we didn’t look all the same it was still a part of me and important to me. I think having to relate to what my parents went through even being together from certain people and even family members gives you a whole new perspective of what racism means, and how it’s such a massive problem that still goes on until this day that is really so pointless when I just really think of the fact that I’ve been created from black and white mixing.”
Helena Alyssa

Chanelle Morgan –
Impact Creative – London

“Black History Month isn’t just 31 days for me, it’s every day of my life. It is a time, where I can reflect on how the world sees me and people like me. To silence the negative voices, but most importantly celebrate and embrace the black boy joy and black girl magic. I am grateful for who I am, where I come from and where I am going. Thankful for the ones who came before me to ensure that I can have a bright future, and forever paving the way for my children and others like them. Hoping for a world that evolves over time to where they can rise above all expectations and break all limitations

I honour the black people around the world who helped shape our history. They are remarkable. But I also celebrate the unsung heroes, the ones who help shape our lives every day. Thank you!”
Chanelle Morgan