Hi readers,

It’s been a while! I hope you have all been staying safe and enjoying the sunshine 😊 

Just as you think the world couldn’t get any more negative, this past week has certainly tested the limits. The murder of George Floyd amongst other racially motivated incidents in the US have been deeply upsetting to witness via social media, but sadly these issues are just the tip of the iceberg of the treatment of black communities across the globe. Consequently, trying to stay positive in today’s world is becoming harder with each day. 

Although this blog usually focusses on positive news stories and ideas from children’s organisations, I believe in times like these we owe it to the oppressed to use our voice to amplify theirs. So this week, I have gathered some positive stories to reflect on in these negative times, and raise awareness on anti-racist work that deserves wider recognition. This includes work by amazing black men who work hard every day to challenge society, as well as ways you can help fight the battle against racism whilst sat at your computer. 

So, without further ado, here are some positive stories to start your week as you mean to go on, making the most of Monday:

  

* Mentivity is a mentoring organisation providing support for young people, schools and parents. They pride themselves on being able to curate BAME centred sessions focussing on topical subjects, such as: Issues facing young people of mixed ethnicity, Rates of exclusions for BAME students and Mental health issues amongst the BAME community.

Recently one of their founders, Sayce Holmes-Lewis, was subjected to an unjust stop and search by the police and has gone on to use this experience to discuss racial profiling in the media. But what struck me was his passion and optimism rather than anger, he truly wants to help eradicate racism within the policing system and has already created a partnership between Mentivity and Lambeth Metropolitan Police!

 

* 56 Black Men started off as an organisation that looked to challenge stereotypes associated with ‘the black man’ and the negative connotations and stigma attached to the cliché image of a black man wearing a hoody. And as the need for 56 Black Men continued, it too has evolved by continuing to push boundaries for black men in the world of media, culture and within the community. 

Founder, Cephas Williams, recently spoke with Curtis Hayes on how he turned his life around and is now making a difference with young black men and women across the globe. Watch the video here.

 

* With the current pandemic, it may feel that it is harder than ever to help in the battle against racism. However there are many ways you can still help, here is a link to a thread including petitions that you can sign, links to donate to if you can afford to, and resources to educate yourselves and others around you. And if you have been watching footage from the US and have seen only violence, this thread of 'beautiful moments' captured amid the protests may offer you a much-needed counterbalance.

And remember all, ‘If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor’ – Desmond Tutu

 

That’s it from me, I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of #MaketheMostofMonday. If you enjoyed reading this blog and want to share something for future editions, please drop me a line at [email protected] or tweet/DM. In the meantime, I hope you have a lovely rest of your week, stay safe, and stay positive 😊