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    For the second year in a row, Ujima, Inc. hosted its Domestic Violence Awareness Month Op-ed Writer’s Workshop. On Saturday, October 5, 2019, in partnership with the Georgetown University Law Fellowship program, Ujima, Inc. continued its work around domestic violence by hosting a workshop that would engage the community and provide best practices on how to write an op-ed for a newspaper, magazine or blog.

    Facilitated by Ujima’s very own LisaLyn Jacobs, the workshop explored the importance of op-eds, how to successfully write one and how to pitch your op-ed to editors.

    A brand new event for Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Ujima, Inc. hosted its first Coffee & Conversation: Black Maternal Health at Busboys and Poets in the Anacostia neighborhood of Washington, DC on Monday, October 14, 2019. Moderated by Megan Simmons, Senior Policy Attorney for Ujima, Inc., the panel discussion provided insight into the intersection of violence and Black maternal health. The conversation centered on violence, bias, and preventable deaths experienced by Black women throughout the duration of their pregnancies.

    Panelists for the event included:

    • Jamila Perritt, MD, MPH, FACOG
    • Jessica Pinckney, In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, Vice President of Government Affairs

    Dr. Perritt shared practical experiences and how her medical care is guided by trauma informed skills. Ms. Pinkney offered her knowledge on policy implications on Black women’s maternal health, as well as policy recommendations to improve outcomes going forward. Dr. Perritt and Ms. Pinkney, both activists and advocates, often work together to educate others on reproductive justice.

    Both women shared their personal experiences on how they arrived at incorporating reproductive justice into their professional lives.

    If you missed the event, click here to view the entire discussion on our Facebook page.

    Ujima, Inc.: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community was thrilled to present two Issue Forums at the 2019 Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference. On Thursday, September 12, 2019, we held our first panel, What We Need Is Love: Preventing Sexual and Dating Violence on HBCU Campuses. Moderated by award winning actress Tanya Wright, the panel explored issues around sexual and dating violence on the campuses of Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Panelists included:

    • Tricia Bent-Goodley, Director of the Howard University Interpersonal Violence Prevention Program and Chair/Director of the University’s Women’s Leadership Initiative
    • Candy Young, Title IX Coordinator, Delaware State University
    • Darlene Johnson, Associate Director, Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice
    • Megan Simmons, Sr. Policy Attorney, Ujima, Inc.: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community

    On Friday, September 13, 2019, we held our second panel, The Untold Story: Trafficking in the Black Community. Also moderated by award winning actress Tanya Wright, the panel took an in-depth look at human trafficking and why Black women and girls are trafficked at a higher rate. Panelist included:

    • Austen Williams, Human Trafficking Advocate and President, The Culture Catalyst
    • Tanisha Murden, Human Trafficking Survivor
    • Gretta Gardner, Deputy Director, Ujima, Inc.: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community
    • Dr. Monique Howard, Executive Director, WOAR-Philadelphia Center Against Sexual Violence

    In addition to events hosted by Ujima, Inc., our Executive Director, Karma Cottman served as a panelist at the “You Matter to Me: Domestic Violence and Strategic Community Alliances” discussion. The panel was a part of the “S.M.E. (Show Me Everything) Speaker Series,” hosted by Reverend Janelle Johnson of Reid Temple AME Church in Glendale, Maryland.

    Ujima, Inc.: The National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community was thrilled to be a part of the 25th ESSENCE Festival in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Ujima team had the opportunity to meet thousands of women and men from all over the country. Guests were eager to share their survivor stories with the team and loved hearing about the work we are doing in the Black community. Ujima distributed resources, giveaways and received over 600 signatures from guests who are interested in participating in addressing domestic violence, sexual violence, and community violence in their own communities.

    The ESSENCE Festival, which was held July 5th – July 7th is known as the world’s largest celebration of global Black culture, entertainment, and empowerment. The 2019 Festival promoted Black culture, economic ownership, and inclusion. The Essence Festival has an international audience of over 500,000 attendees and brings a $4 million economic impact to the city of New Orleans.

    Because of the overwhelming support we received, Ujima, Inc. plans to attend and support the Festival annually.


    Star Jackson
    Ujima Communications Intern

    Black Philanthropy Month (BPM) is a multimedia campaign created in August 2011 that celebrates African-descent giving. Founded by Dr. Jackie Bouvier Copeland and the Pan-African Women’s Philanthropy Network (PAWNet), BPM is an annual, global celebration that invites African and Black communities and allies to use August as a month to give back. The theme for 2019 is: Let’s Make History.

    BPM’s purposes are to lead civic engagement, amplify stories, cultivate next generation givers, and to expand the ways of giving through month long of events. BPM promotes the power of giving to transform lives and aims to inform, involve, inspire and invest in Black philanthropic leadership in order to strengthen giving in all forms in black communities. Public participation began in 2013 and has grown throughout the years. Participants can now get involved in BPM through various avenues, unique to their philanthropic styles – online and offline, locally and globally. Involvement can occur by attending a philanthropy or community related event, writing an op-ed piece inspired by the theme of the campaign, sharing news and stories using the #BPM2019 hashtag on social media, joining or starting a giving circle, becoming a mentor, hosting local civic engagement forums, engaging in community service projects and donating to a cause of their interest.

    BPM was recognized by the United Nations as part of its Declaration of 2011 as the International Year for People of African Descent. Each year, a new organizing concept frames the BPM campaign.

    For more information about Black Philanthropy Month, visit blackphilanthropymonth.com. To support Ujima, Inc. and our mission, click here.

    Star Jackson
    Ujima Communications Intern


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