We must create spaces to uplift the voices of those who have not been heard.
Black History Panel led by Black Males: Our History, Our Voice, Our Time: February 24, 2022
A dynamic virtual discussion, led by Council Member Kevin Riley, Dr. Lou Hart, Kenton Kirby, LCSW, Hugh Campbell, hosted by CEO, Shanequa Moore and Executive Director Letecia Stewart
NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK – “Black, young males. They don’t get a chance to be kids,” says Shanequa Moore, CEO and founder of I’RAISE Girls and Boys International Corporation, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting youth holistically.
The Black-led nonprofit organization is hosted a virtual Black history panel led by Black males on February 24, 2022, to decode the historical and present violent attack on the Black male in American society, retelling the Black male story from the right eyes, and reclaiming the Black male voice.
“When they’re young, they’re black, they’re males, they’re not seen in the eyes of society as a child. Their childhood is essentially robbed from them. Their ability to go through life and develop is taken from them,” says Moore.
The panel consists of influential activists New York City Council Member Kevin Riley, Dr. Lou Hart, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the Yale University of Medicine, Kenton Kirby, LCSW, Director of Practice at Center for Court Innovation, and Hugh Campbell, an attorney at Rodman and Campbell, P.C.
Panelists referenced their professional knowledge and personal experiences to address and dispel stereotypes that Black males in America face.
“You don’t get the ability to be a child because you’re a black child, especially a black male child and we see this throughout every system,” says Moore.
“The mass incarceration of young, black males, we see this in the foster care system, we see this in schools when black males are receiving harsher punishments for acting out in class. This is a consistent theme, the vilification of black males,” she says.
The panel came after a weekly film and discussion series focusing on the story of Emmett Till. During February, in honor of Black History Month, I’RAISE held virtual screenings of “Women of The Movement” and community discussions around topics, such as systemic racism, mental health, collective trauma, and how to support Black men and boys.
“Women of the Movement” is a limited series that details the heartwrenching story of Mamie Till-Mobley’s fight for justice after her son, Emmett Till, was brutally murdered at the age of 14. For centuries, Black people have been the target of brutal violence for being perceived as aggressive or threatening. Unfortunately, these acts of violence are still prevalent today.
I’RAISE has created a safe space where marginalized people are welcome to tell their stories. All are welcome to contribute to a dynamic conversation about the Black community's past, present, and future.
To watch a live recording of the virtual screening and discussion, click Here.
More information on this series can be found at www.iraiseinc.org/blackhistorymonth.