February Changemaker Series | Black History Month

February Changemaker Series | Black History Month

We are excited to launch our CHANGEMAKERS series that spotlights the innovative + inspiring non-profits, businesses, creators and thinkers who are pioneering thought leadership and POSITIVE CHANGE DAILY.

What is a changemaker? A changemaker is an innovator who takes creative action to solve a problem and has the motivation and courage to see and do things differently. Changemakers are focused on making positive, transformative differences with a genuine goal of making the world a better place. They inspire others to evolve their thought processes by sparking conversations that are necessary for unity, healing and advocacy. It is now more important than ever to amplify our voices and be open to evolving our mindsets and behaviors for the greater good of our communities.

“Find the courage to have hard conversations and also find the courage to listen to hard conversations.” -Minaa B.

For those of us ready to find a path to advocacy and change-making, we support you. Advocacy begins with being mindful of investing time to seeking out new connections, listening to experiences without judgement, and understanding the challenges of others with empathy. Only by bringing your most authentic self to your discovery work will you be able to take the actions necessary to becoming an advocate.

Lasting change does not happen alone, it requires teams of people, strong institutions, and support from every part of society. Below are some resources from our own advocacy work at ALEX AND ANI to help get you started. There are many, many more notable organizations, creators and businesses in addition to what we spotlight below. Remember, we all have the potential to be changemaker's.

 

“It isn’t where you come from; it’s where you’re going that counts.” -Ella Fitzgerald

NON-PROFITS TO KNOW

Each February, the United States observes Black History Month. This month is dedicated to honoring the history, struggles, and triumphs of Black people in America and around the world.

Today and everyday, consider supporting to these noteworthy, highly-rated organizations that are working diligently to promote black health, education, rights and community development in the United States. There are of course many, many more organizations and causes outside of the below and as we continue our own advocate work here at ALEX AND ANI, we will continuously update this list.

 

The National Black Child Development Institute (NBCDI) is dedicated to improving and advancing the quality of life for Black children and their families across America.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NBCDI>

 

The vision of NAACP is to ensure a society in which all individuals have equal rights without discrimination based on race.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NAACP > 

 

The National Urban League is dedicated to economic empowerment in order to elevate the standard of living in underserved urban communities.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE > 

 

The Loveland Foundation is committed to showing up for communities of color in unique and powerful ways, with a particular focus on Black women and girls.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE LOVELAND FOUNDATION>

 

Campaign Zero encourages policymakers to focus on solutions with the strongest evidence of effectiveness at reducing police violence.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CAMPAIGN ZERO >

 

Color of Change designs campaigns powerful enough to end practices that unfairly hold Black people back, and champion solutions that move us all forward.

LEARN MORE ABOUT COLOR OF CHANGE >

 

The Equal Justice Initiative is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment and to protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.

LEARN MORE ABOUT EQUAL JUSTICE INITIATIVE>

 

SURJ is a national network of groups and individuals working to undermine white supremacy and to work for racial justice.

LEARN MORE ABOUT SHOWING UP FOR RACIAL JUSTICE > 

 

CHANGEMAKERS TO LEARN FROM

February may be Black History Month, but the celebration to honor, listen and support Black individuals who are transforming the world should be supported year round. Discover a selection of a few noteworthy changemakers we would like to spotlight, and of course there are many, many more.

 

[left to right, top to bottom] Alex Elle, Morgan Harper Nichols, Lalah Delia, Rachel Ricketts, Rachael Adams, Rachel Cargle

1. Alex Elle (@alex_elle): Host of @theheygirlpodcast, Author of @aftertherainbook

2. Morgan Harper Nichols (@morganharpernichols): Artist, Poet and Musician

3. Lalah Delia (@lalahdelia): Author of Vibrate Higher Daily: Live Your Power, Spiritual Writer, Wellness Educator

4. Rachel Ricketts (@iamrachelricketts): Spiritual Activist, Racial Justice Educator, Healer, Speaker, and Author

5. Rachael Adams (@rachaeladams): Olympic Medalist, Motivational Speaker, Founder @journeystrength

6. Rachel Cargle (@rachel.cargle): Academic, Writer, Lecturer, Founder of The Loveland Foundation and The Great Unlearn

7. Brittany Packnett Cunningham (@mspackyetti) Writer, Activist, Educator, Podcaster and Co-founder of Campaign Zero

8. Lauren Ash (@hellolaurenash): Yoga and meditation instructor, Founder of Black Girl In Om

9. Blair Imani (@blairimani): Writer and Educator

10. Layla F. Saad (@laylafsaad): Author, Speaker, Teacher and Podcast Host of @goodancestorpodcast

11. Luvvie Ajayi Jones (@luvvie): Author, Speaker, Podcast Host

12. Austin Channing (@austinchanning): Writer, Speaker, Producer, Author of I'm Still Here

13. Minaa B. (@minaa_b): Therapist, Wellness Coach

14. Lindsay Peoples Wagner (@lpeopleswagner): Editor-In-Chief of The Cut

15. Yasmine Cheyenne (@yasminecheyenne): Self-healing Expert, Teacher, Speaker, Advocate for Mental Health, Host of @thesugarjarpodcast

16. Maryam Ajayi (@maryamajayi) Energy Healer, Entrepreneur, Writer, Activist, Speaker, CEO & Founder @diveinwell

 
 

ARTISTS TO SUPPORT

Supporting the Black creative community is vital right now and always. Art is a powerful tool that inspires, heals and unites. Supporting Black artists by purchasing their work as well as following their social media is a small, tangible way to show your commitment to support the community.  

Below we spotlight a selection of Black creators who are bringing light to the social injustices of our times through their powerful creative works of art. This is a small selection of a much larger community that is creating powerful works that spark change.

 

STORMY MAE NESBIT (@_stormae)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

SHAE / She is This (@sheisthisdesigns)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

Perryn Ryan (@perrynryan)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Queenbe Monyei (@queenbmonyei)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Melissa Koby (mkoby_)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

KaceyKal (@kaceykal)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Jade Purple Brown (@jadepurplebrown)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Kyzia Wint (@kyziamarie)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

Kendra Dandy (@theebouffants)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Sharee Miller (@coilyandcute)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Lo Harris (@loharris_art)

Follow on Instagram

Buy Art

 

Edinah Chewe (@wildlogic)

Follow on Instagram

Visit Website


BLACK-OWNED BRANDS TO SUPPORT

Shopping and supporting Black-owned business not only helps to strengthen Black economies, it also helps foster more jobs in local communities, and contributes to reducing the racial wealth gap. Below is a selection of black-owned brands we suggest you follow on social media and consider shopping from.

 

GOLDE / Health & Beauty

Shop Golde

 

Fe NOEL / Fashion & Accessories

Shop Fe Noel

KINTUNE NEW YORK / Consciously-crafted Handbags + Leather Goods

Shop Kintune New York

 

CLARE / Interior Paints

Shop Clare

THE LIP BAR / Vegan & Cruelty Free Beauty Brand

Shop The Lip Bar

CIVIL JEWELRY / 20% of sales reinvested in underrepresented founders.

Shop CIVIL

 

HANIFA / Fashion Brand for Limitless Women

Shop Hanifa

YOWIE / Home & Life Shop

Shop Yowie

RAYO & HONEY / Handcrafted Pennants & Totes

Shop Rayo & Honey

 

THIRD CROWN / Contemporary Jewelry Brand

Shop Third Crown

HONEY POT / Plant-based Feminine Care Products

Shop Honey Pot

NUBIAN SKIN / Skin-tone Lingerie and Hosiery

Shop Nubian Skin

HARPERIMAN DOLLS / Handmade Linen Dolls

Shop Harperiman Dolls

 

TREE FAIRFAX / Leather Goods

Shop Tree Fairfax

 

EFFIES PAPER / Stationery & Lifestyle Accessories

Shop Effies Paper

 

ALIYA WANEK / Sustainable Women's Fashion

Shop Aliya Wanek

BROTHER VELLIES / Artisan Lifestyle, Shoes & Accessories

Shop Brother Vellies

 

HONEYCHILD BOOKS / Children’s books that help build big confidence in little people

Shop HoneyChild Books

PUR HOME / Non-toxic Household Cleaning Products

Shop Pur Home

 

White Space Jewelry / Custom Jewelry Design and Engraving

Shop White Space Jewelry