Black History Month was first celebrated at Kent State University in January and February of 1970. The popularity of the event quickly spread to other educational institutions throughout the United States and in 1976 President Gerald Ford formally recognized February as National Black History Month.
The purpose of Black History Month is to recognize the contributions that African Americans have to every aspect of America life: medicine, law, government, music, literature, math, science, the performing arts, and every other field of learning and achievement. These contributions have often gone overlooked in schools and in the public arena and Black History Month is a great opportunity to remind ourselves of the many ways African Americans have helped to make America what it is today.
You could start by making February a month dedicated to reading African American literature, studying books on U.S. History from African American perspectives, and learning about famous figures in your chosen field of interest where there are sure to be many African Americans who have contributed greatly to that subject matter.
Another important way to celebrate Black History Month is to support Black-owned businesses in your local area and online. Just as African Americans struggle to get recognition for their contributions to society, African American-owned businesses often face an uphill battle in getting support for their products and services. Be sure to visit these awesome Black-owned businesses, this month and all year long!
Written by: Daniel Mauna
We would like to celebrate Black History Month by spotlighting some great Black Owned Businesses with you!
Check out the businesses highlighted below. They are businesses that Mei-Lon & Toni met at the NRF Big Show! All business names are linked to their home page, so be sure to check them out!
AQUA WATERPROOF HEADWEAR
Aqua Waterproof Headwear's mission is to, "develop innovative products that function easily, solve everyday problems and enhance the lifestyles of our customers."
EARTH ELEMENTS SOAPWORKS
Earth Element Soapworks mission is to, " build self-esteem and empower people to love their skin naturally by making products that are safe, non toxic, and highly effective."
GREEN TOP GIFTS
Green Top Gifts aims to "bring diversity to your celebrations with apparel, home decor and stationery." They "began in 2016 making Christmas products solely for their two year old son and have continued to spread joy to thousands of other households across the United States expanding to other holidays and special celebrations."
GWEN BELOTI JEWELRY
Gwen Beloti Jewelry's mission is "to design pieces that are stylish, accessible and inclusive does not come at the expense of quality."
Marjani Jewelry "aims to not just be a retailer, but a community where shopping is a fun, affirming, memorable experience. Bringing international beauty and cosmetic products to the local consumer, and using this platform to empower women of color, across nationalities, age, hair textures and shades to embrace and claim their beauty.”
REGINA FLEMING PHOTOGRAPHY
Regina Fleming Photography specializes in weddings, events, and portraits around the world. Fleming has been published in various magazines and journals for her photography and activisim.