Tag Archive | "Community"

Are Black Non-Profits Drowning?

Non Profit Organisation

Non Profit Organisation

Black non-profit organisations are fighting for air as they currently feel the financial squeeze. Funding, funding and more funding is what nearly every non-profit organisation wants or fears they may not receive. The other pulling factor is that their valuable work is not being recognised. So what you will find is that many organisations end up defunct due to lack of funding, support and recognition.

Now you may agree or disagree but if you remember earlier this year the government made decisions to cut the budgets of voluntary sector grants despite their claim to be huge supporters of non-profit organisations in communities I expect more cuts to follow gradually.

How can they stay afloat? Well, relying on government grants from the London Development Agency should not be the one and only source of revenue as many non-profit organisations know. There are so many other sources of funding available including Comic Relief, the Big Lottery Fund, The Capital Fund, Greater London Enterprise, Urban Partnership Group, London’s Future 500 and many more. For Black social enterprises this is key but the participation and support of the community is even more so important.

Supporting what we have in the community makes a huge difference. The more numbers we have the greater non-profit organisations are seen to be benefiting the community through their work. By this happening funding becomes a little easier as people, particularly funders, can see that there is a need for this service in the community. It sounds simple but a lot of effort is put into establishing social enterprises and it is the enterprise which sometimes gets overlooked.

Just recently a friend invited me to support a project he was representing ? the Daddy Cool Project www.daddycoolproject.org.uk via Facebook. A valuable project in the community for young men who are non-fathers, fathers and expectant fathers. For a project like this we should be lining up to support their efforts if we want a strong male community of future fathers.

But as ventures like the Daddy Cool Project will realise non-profit organisations also have their work to do to attract those in the community. They must now start seeing their enterprises as ‘brands’ or even the leading face of the company must be seen as a ‘brand’ to attract people in the community.

The term ‘brand’ is now frequently being used to refer to individuals and businesses. ?It is not the most attractive word but it sums up what you need to be in order for your valuable service to be seen and heard. Your ‘brand’ will more than likely keep you afloat attracting a swarm of keen funders. Remember the more you are seen and the more people you are supporting, eventually the more your ‘brand’ will be seen worth investing in.

So what do non-profits need to do?

Well, here are some quick thoughts of action:

Annual reports are essential ? they show where you started, what you have done and where you are going. Every non-profit should at least have one ? you will be surprised that not every organisation has one.
Social media ? Do not over populate yourself to say you are connected to Twitter and Facebook. Use the form of media that you feel will be most valuable to you and utilize it well.

Build your organization as a brand. See your CEO as a brand ? build representations in the community, see yourself as an expert in your field and build that brand in the community as an advisor, a commentator and expert in your field. Your branding will build your organizations representation and ultimately make you stand out to funders.
Finally, what do we need to do?

Well, lack of support will eventually result in broken communities, so we obviously need to do the opposite.

Support our non-profits, go to workshops, become committee members, encourage others to programs that will benefit them. Growth in numbers creates funding and stabilizes valuable non-profits in the community to benefit future generations.

The writer of this piece, Samantha Watson, is a journalist and media strategy consultant. She is the director of Sawa Communications (www.sawacommunications.co.uk).

Sawa Communications

Sawa Communications

Posted in Black Britain, Black WomenComments (3)

Oak Bluffs – Summer's Home For Elite Blacks

Home of the black elites

Home of the black elites

Washington Post Staff Writer DeNeen L. Brown wrote an interesting? August 20, 2009 About how Americas Elite blacks are flocking to Martha’s Vineyard to take their annual holidays.

Over the 4 page web article. Brown highlights the fact that this isn’t a new phenomenon, but a generational thing. Black families have been attracted to the area for well over 100 years. The first African Americans to visit the area were attracted by the areas safeness.

The town was once a Methodist retreat where anti-racism sermons were preached.? Some of the first African Americans? to visit the area came as servants to wealthy white families. Others worked in the hotels. These early pioneers were later followed by, elite blacks from New York, Boston and Washington retreated here for summer vacations

Further down the road is West’s cottage, and farther down the road is Shearer Cottage, an inn built by a Charles Shearer, the son of a slave and a slave master. Shearer built the inn to provide lodging for blacks during segregation. Famous guests included singers Paul Robeson, Ethel Waters and Lillian Evanti; and composer Harry T. Burleigh as well as Madame CJ Walker, an early self-made millionaire . More recent visitors and home owners include Henry Louis Gates Jnr, Spike Lee and Valerie Jarrett.

It’s all about class and money. American high flyers from the Black middle classes are acutely aware of their position in the social strata. Money is known and respected; though not necessarily flaunted. The Area has been described as “The black Hamptons”.

Despite the emphasis on class and regular “summering”, there is a group in Marthas Vineyard that doesn’t let class and breeding affect your membership. That is the early morning swimming group, “The polar Bears”. The group takes the name, somewhat ironically because of the cold temperature of the sea in the early morning.

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The Only Black Man on the Titanic

There was a Haitian man on the Titanic

Hatian family on the titanic

Hatian family on the titanic

There was a Haitian man on the ship!
His uncle was President of Haiti!
Joseph Phillippe Lemercier Laroche was the only black man, a Haitian man, to perish in the Titanic; that’s after he saved his wife and kids. Laroche was born in Cap Haitian, Haiti , on May 26, 1889.

In the blockbuster film Titanic, Leonardo DiCaprio’s role could have easily been played by a Black man and it would have been historically accurate. In fact, the life story of Haitian native Joseph Phillippe Lemercier Laroche is far more intriguing than the movie’s lead character, but no one knew of his existence until recently.

The silence about the stranger-than-fiction life story of the Titanic’s only Black passenger astonishes noted Titanic historian Judith Geller, author of Titanic: Women and Children First, who said, “It is strange that nowhere in the copious 1912 press descriptions of the ship and the interviews with the survivors was the presence of a Black family among the passengers ever mentioned.”

The story of this interracial family was not known until 2000, three years after the movie’s release, when the Chicago Museum of Science & Industry and the Titanic Historical Society revealed the information as part of a Titanic exhibit.

Joseph Laroche was born into a powerful family. His uncle, Dessalines M. Cincinnatus Leconte, was the president of Haiti . When Joseph Phillippe Lemercier was fifteen, he left Haiti to study engineering in Beauvais , France . Several years later, he met Juliette Lafargue, the 22-year-old daughter of a local wine seller. The two eventually married.
Despite having an engineering degree, Joseph’s skin color left him unable to find employment in France . The Laroches decided to return toHaiti and booked second-class reservations on the Titanic. After the ship struck an iceberg, Joseph loaded his wife and children onto a lifeboat and he went down with the ship. His body was never recovered.
Shortly before Christmas of that year, Juliette Laroche gave birth to their son, Joseph Laroche Jr.
Juliette never remarried.


Posted in Black Britain, Caribbean HistoryComments (1)

Music, New Markets, African and Caribbean Biodiversity

I’m browsing the shelves of my office bookshelf. This is, in fact, the philosophy section at the local library, but i’m sure that many of the web community out there will be familiar with this analogy.

I’m also very excited at the impending Summer launch of the BBake entertainment service.
BBake at www.bbake.com will allow you to get the entertainment that you want, your way.

I have spent quite a bit of time discussing the  possibilities that this could yield, and I have found that many music industry officials get excited at the prospect of discovering a new pop band in Manchester, or the possibility of satisfying an underserved Chinese population in some part of London, however, when I suggest that this mechanism could also illuminate the UK appetite for more than 1 R ‘n’ B act per year, this is often seen as unrealistic.

I believe that mechanisms for supporting all talent are very important for society and for the economy and this includes African talent of all lineages.

Right now, as part of the Spring, pre-launch ramp-up, BBake is offering ‘Forest 1-Generation’ and ‘Forest Now’, two music-driven, sustainability services.

Forest 1-Generation allows you to buy music downloads from our music partner and for every purchase of music credit (from as little as $3) we will donate to African Biodiversity by supporting one of the world’s last lion reserves in Kenya.

Forest Now allows you to download free music from our music partner and we will donate to Caribbean Biodiversity by supporting Guyanese rainforest.

This is just the start of how BBake intends to nurture fun, talent and the environment.

I’ll be glad to keep the Black Presence community up-to-date with developments and I hope that Black Presence will contribute to BBake development.

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Taking the BNP seriously: Simplistic condemnation is not enough

British National Party

British National Party

What the BNPs modernisation reveals about modern Britain

The BNPs rebranding strategy reveals something very interesting about Britain, and white British people in particular. For years, by promoting racial nationalism, the BNP remained an utterly marginal organisation, largely attracting hardcore racists, skinheads, and social misfits. The fact that the BNP now feels the need to tell its activists to cover skinhead haircuts, to not make extreme statements, to avoid any violent rhetoric or acts, and to appear normal and respectable clearly demonstrates firstly that there are still plenty of extremists in the BNP, but also shows the extent to which Britain has changed – the vast majority of Britons want nothing to do with racist bigots and do not want to be associated with a party that represents hatred. It is also interesting that, as with other far-right groups, as well as with Islamist and pro-Jihadist organisations, the BNP is attempting to tap into the widespread feelings of alienation and atomisation felt by many in a society that is perceived to have poor social cohesion and to lack a sense of old fashioned community.

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12 Things The Negro Must Do

Nannie Burroughs

Nannie Burroughs

Found an Interesting post today called

12 Things The Negro Must Do – How Not To Become Scapegoats For Degenerate Black Community Behavior.

It was written in around the turn of the last century by a woman called Nannie Helen Burroughs.

Nannie Helen Burroughs – Nannie Helen Burroughs (1879-1961) was an educator, orator, religious leader and businesswoman who moved to Washington, D.C., as a young woman to take advantage of the city’s superior educational opportunities. While living in Washington she decided to open a school for African American girls to prepare them for a productive adult life. Burroughs was an active member of her church, where she organized a women’s club that conducted evening classes in useful skills such as typewriting, bookkeeping, cooking and sewing. Her responsibilities within the church increased when she became secretary of the Women’s Auxiliary of the National Baptist Convention, which supported missionary work and educational societies in Baptist churches throughout the nation. Burroughs’s dream lifelong dream was realized when she opened the National Training School for Women and Girls in Washington, D.C., in 1909.

1. The Negro Must Learn To Put First Things First. The First Things Are: Education; Development of Character Traits; A Trade and Home Ownership.The Negro puts too much of his earning in clothes, in food, in show and in having what he calls “a good time.” The Dr. Kelly Miller said, “The Negro buys what he wants and begs for what he Needs.”

2. The Negro Must Stop Expecting God and White Folk To Do For Him What He Can Do For Himself.It is the “Divine Plan” that the strong shall help the weak, but even God does not do for man what man can do for himself. The Negro will have to do exactly what Jesus told the man (in John 5:8) to do-Carry his own load-”Take up your bed and walk”

3. The Negro Must Keep Himself, His Children And His Home Clean And Make The Surroundings In Which He Lives Comfortable and Attractive.

He must learn to “run his community up”-not down. We can segregate by law, we integrate only by living. Civilization is not a matter of race, it is a matter of standards. Believe it or not-some day, some race is going to outdo the Anglo-Saxon, completely. It can be the Negro race, if the Negro gets sense enough. Civilization goes up and down that way.

4. The Negro Must Learn To Dress More Appropriately

Knowing what to wear-how to wear it-when to wear it and where to wear it, are earmarks of common sense, culture and also an index to character.

5. The Negro Must Make His Religion An Everyday Practice And Not Just A Sunday-Go-To-Meeting Emotional Affair.

6. The Negro Must Highly Resolve To Wipe Out Mass Ignorance.

The leaders of the race must teach and inspire the masses to become eager and determined to improve mentally, morally and spiritually, and to meet the basic requirements of good citizenship.

We should initiate an intensive literacy campaign in America, as well as in Africa. Ignorance satisfied ignorance-is a millstone abut the neck of the race. It is democracy’s greatest burden.

Social integration is a relationship attained as a result of the cultivation of kindred social ideals, interests and standards.

It is a blending process that requires time, understanding and kindred purposes to achieve. Likes alone and not laws can do it.

7. The Negro Must Stop Charging His Failures Up To His “Color” And To White People’s Attitude.

The truth of the matter is that good service and conduct will make senseless race prejudice fade like mist before the rising sun.

God never intended that a man’s color shall be anything other than a badge of distinction. It is high time that all races were learning that fact. The Negro must first QUALIFY for whatever position he wants. Purpose, initiative, ingenuity and industry are the keys that all men use to get what they want. The Negro will have to do the same. He must make himself a workman who is too skilled not to be wanted, and too DEPENDABLE not to be on the job, according to promise or plan. He will never become a vital factor in industry until he learns to put into his work the vitalizing force of initiative, skill and dependability. He has gone RIGHTS mad and DUTY dumb.

8. The Negro Must Overcome His Bad Job Habits.

He must make a brand new reputation for himself in the world of labor. His bad job habits are absenteeism, funerals to attend, or a little business to look after. The Negro runs an off and on business. He also has a bad reputation for conduct on the job-such as petty quarrelling with other help, incessant loud talking about nothing; loafing, carelessness, due to lack of job pride; insolence, gum chewing and-too often-liquor drinking. Just plain bad job habits!

(No fallback on what Whites or other people ‘get away with’)

9. He Must Improve His Conduct In Public Places.

Taken as a whole, he is entirely too loud and too ill-mannered.

There is much talk about wiping out racial segregation and also much talk about achieving integration.

Segregation is a physical arrangement by which people are separated in various services.

It is definitely up to the Negro to wipe out the apparent justification or excuse for segregation.

The only effective way to do it is to clean up and keep clean. By practice, cleanliness will become a habit and habit becomes character.

10. The Negro Must Learn How To Operate Business For People-Not For Negro People, Only.

To do business, he will have to remove all typical “earmarks, ” business principles; measure up to accepted standards and meet stimulating competition, graciously-in fact, he must learn to welcome competition.

11. The Average So-Called Educated Negro Will Have To Come Down Out Of The Air. He Is Too Inflated Over Nothing. He Needs An Experience Similar To The One That Ezekiel Had-(Ezekiel 3:14-19). And He Must Do What Ezekiel Did.

Otherwise, through indifference, as to the plight of the masses, the Negro, who thinks that he has escaped, will lose his own soul. It will do all leaders good to read Hebrew 13:3, and the first Thirty-seven Chapters of Ezekiel.

“A race transformation itself through its own leaders and its sensible common people. A race rises on its own wings, or is held down by its own weight. True leaders are never things apart from the people”. They are the masses. They simply got to the front ahead of them. Their only business at the front is to inspire to masses by hard work and noble example and challenge them to “Come on”! Dante stated a fact when he said, “Show the people the light and they will find the way!”

There must arise within the Negro race a leadership that is not out hunting bargains for itself. A noble example is found in the men and women of the Negro race, who, in the early days, laid down their lives for the people. Their invaluable contributions have not been appraised by the “latter-day leaders.” In many cases, their names would never be recorded, among the unsung heroes of the world, but for the fact that white friends have written them there.

“Lord, God of Hosts, Be with us yet.”

The Negro of today does not realize that, but, for these exhibits A’s, that certainly show the innate possibilities of members of their own race, white people would not have been moved to make such princely investments in lives and money, as they have made, for the establishment of schools and for the on-going of the race.

12. The Negro Must Stop Forgetting His Friends. “Remember.”

Read Deuteronomy 24:18. Deuteronomy rings the big bell of gratitude. Why? Because an ingrate is an abomination in the sight of God. God is constantly telling us that “I the Lord thy God delivered you” through human instrumentalities.

The American Negro has had and still has friends-in the North and in the South. These friends not only pray, speak, write, influence others, but make unbelievable, unpublished sacrifices and contributions for the advancement of the race-for their brothers in bonds.

The noblest thing that the Negro can do is to so live and labor that these benefactors will not have given in vain. The Negro must make his heart warm with gratitude, his lips sweet with thanks and his heart and mind resolute with purpose to justify the sacrifices and stand on his feet and go forward- “God is no respector of persons. In every nation, he that feareth him and worketh righteousness is” sure to win out. Get to work! That’s the answer to everything that hurts us. We talk too much about nothing instead of redeeming the time by working.

At first Read, I’m not sure who this edict is intended for, Black People themselves or ‘benevolent white benefactors’. Naturally the language is derrogatory by todays standards, but I want to ask you whether you think:

1) Does what she’s saying apply today?
2) Is she right or wrong – why?



Posted in African American History, Black Women, SlaveryComments (0)

Is marriage outdated?


Has Marriage had it's big day?

Has Marriage had it’s big day?

Every day I trawl the web looking for interesting articles to bring to your screen. Tonight I happened to chance across an article called…
Do we need Black Mariage Day?” Personally, & I have to be honest here, I hadn’t actually heard of the initiative and so proceeded to read the whole article.

The author made the assertion that there was a general marriage crisis, amongst all ethnic groups, not just African Americans.  Reading further the article Quoted a piece by Joy jones in the Washington Post entitled, ‘Marriage Is for White People’

Personally I was shocked just by the title, but had to read the article because so many journalists use the headline to lure you in, hiding the fact that the main thrust of the article isn’t at all what you might have believed by the Headline.

Jones goes on to Quote the Black feminist Alice Dunbar-Nelson;
“Why should well-salaried women marry?”

Making the point that these days women have no real NEED to marry, as they are financially self sufficient.  Furthermore all the old benefits of marriage are now mostly attainable for women without the baggage any man might bring with him.  I find the whole debate fascinating.

Are you Married?  Do you intend to be…Or, if you have been married before would you marry again?   Given that there is a massive dropoff in Marriage rates within the African American Community.

In 2001, according to the U.S. Census, 43.3 percent of black men and 41.9 percent of black women in America had never been married, in contrast to 27.4 percent and 20.7 percent respectively for whites. African American women are the least likely in our society to marry. In the period between 1970 and 2001, the overall marriage rate in the United States declined by 17 percent; but for blacks, it fell by 34 percent.

How do you feel about Marriage yourself?  Do you think that marriage is an outdated institution or do you feel that marriage still has a strong role to play within the developmrent of STRONG communites?  I’m keen to know what you think?

Related Articles:

  1. Why do we need Black Marriage Day?
  2. Marriage Is for White People 

Posted in Black Women, Editors BlogComments (3)

Obama may be President but don't take your eye off the issues!

Use your exposure, Mr President!

Use your exposure, Mr President!

Blogger John Ridley points out that whilst the President of the worldsmost powerful country enjoys cosy nights on comfy chatshows, and other African American high flyers like Eric Holder, Michael Steele and Richard Parsons are making headlines the situation is considerably worse for the average African American male.

My response to this is, “Yeah, tell us something we don’t know”.   Ridley isn’t criticsisng Obama but merely pointing out that the apparent success of the President and other high flyers should never be mistaken for , or allowed to maksk the dire straits that many black famiilies are facing in America.

He goes on to point out that in the USA only just over half young black men are working.  The global recession has hit african Americans hard, but even that is only part of the story.  Sisters, it seems are doing better due to a higher college (University)   education, which is fantastic but still needs to be maintained and cultivated.  He states…

“The current size of the overall gap in employment between black women and black men is historically unprecedented, and black Americans are the only group for whom the gender employment gap is in favor of women,”

These stats cant be good for the Self esteem of African American Men, and it will take more than A few High Profile African americans Who are “Making it” to convince the communities otherwise.  These High Profile Personalities MUST speak for the black community and Use their wealth and influence to Stimulate growth and support within Black communities, otherwise all their posturing and Preening is nothing more than a sideshow put on by the establishment.

Just because there’s a black Preseident doesn’t mean the end of innequality. Enen if the media likes to paint it that way.

What do you think?

Related Link:

Visible Man  – John Ridley

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Do Community groups make a difference?

AUGUSTA, Ga. – It was a gathering to reclaim black manhood–a conference for all ages, men and women, held at Paine College.

“You can achieve, you can believe, you can conceive, that truly this country is made for you and you need to use the world as your oyster,” said Dr. Mike Weaver, organizer.

Men and women of all ages were empowered and encouraged at the Let Us Make Man Conference. It was an all-day event that consisted of programs and sessions that Weaver says hit real issues.

“We deal with issues such as law and society, restoring the black family and educating our youth, issues such as finances,” Weaver said.

Twenty-year-old college student Jeremy Hill was glad to be at Let Us Make Man. The sessions opened his eyes and motivated him.

“It hit home. It helps you realize that in your local community things need to be changed,” Hill said.

Statistics show that almost 31 percent of African American males will be imprisoned by the age of 18. Right here in the CSRA, almost 50 percent of the males in jail are African American. Let Us Make Man says it takes a community to bring about change.

“We need to empower the young boy and young girl in our community so they don’t fall victim to the drug trade so when you look at a lot of the homicide and the murders that are talking place, is because you’re talking about an idle mind is a devil’s work shop,” Weaver said.

“We need to bring more of a positive image for black males who are in school, who are in graduating, who believe in taking care of there children, who believe in marriage,” said Duke Carter.

The event’s organizers say the program teaches black men and women to understand that they’re not just a citizen of their town or state, but a citizen of the world.

Source: http://www.nbcaugusta.com/news/local/41636547.html

Posted in Black Women, Editors BlogComments (0)

Was OPD's Treatment of Inner Circle racist?

Revellers at Inner Circle

Revellers at Inner Circle

Last week, Geoffrey Pete–long a well-respected figure in Oakland’s African-American community, and the owner of Geoffrey’s Inner Circle nightclub–held a press conference outside Oakland City Hall to announce he’s considering filing a complaint against the OPD for unlawful harassment.

Pete has previously raised allegations that OPD and former mayor Jerry Brown instituted a crackdown on Oakland’s African-American clubs in the downtown area–which happened to coincide with Brown’s plan to bring 10,000 new residents to the city and a surge of development. On Tuesday, he charged the police with “extortion practices as it relates to the closing of my establishment” and threatened a lawsuit unless mediation occurs.

As reported on the front page of the Oakland Post (both the Chron and the Trib neglected to cover the press conference), Pete claims that OPD gave “false information” to the manager of a parking garage the nightclub used, which led to the cancellation of Pete’s contract, and refused to allow him to hold an event at Sweet’s Ballroom unless 18 police officers were hired to provide security, at a cost of $7,600 (OPD later dropped the number of officers needed to six, which Pete also refused to pay for, and the party was shut down when officers blocked the entrance).

Read the full article>>

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