Updated: Feb 13
Sometimes it's important to write about recent history, so I'm focusing on that for our this Black history month blog article.
1. Did you know we're in a magazine?
I was asked in 2021 to write a monthly article for the Urban Experience Magazine because its Black woman Editor-in-Chief realized how important it was for our sisters to have the information and supports our LLC and nonprofit provide regarding domestic violence (DV) identification, safe exit from crisis, and rebuilding after the crisis. In our first year, we concentrated on telling stories to help our readers understand what the lesser-known types of DV can look like when they show in up in the life of a Black woman.
However, researching about, talking with, and being a Black woman, I understand that my sisters and our community have a hard time accepting that we as Black women can be lured into these situations. So this year, I set out to help illustrate how the traps are set and maintained using the traditions our culture teaches and therefore our community expects. I have mapped out a Perpetrator Pattern Roadmap in 7 steps that demonstrates it in detail, and I am taking the first 7 months of this year to walk you through it in storytelling format using real-life scenarios from survivors.
Don't worry, though! I also mapped out Survivor Safe Route in 5 steps that demonstrates how Black women can get out of the trap and stay out of any more of his traps AND any other predators' future traps tha tI will walk you through in storytelling format from real-life survivor scenarios as well.
Have you missed January? No problem! Here's the link
And here's the Urban Experience Magazine Black History Month edition: link. You'll find our article on Page 12, Beloved.
2. Did you know our mission broadened?
Our nonprofit portion of this mission to change the narrative for Black women regarding DV has broadened and formed 2 distinct sections:
Courageous Access - is our nonprofit side of this mission. The holistic support that directly serves the Black woman DV survivor and the children she is raising after she has established a permanent separation from the abuser
Courageous Fire, LLC - is our for profit side of this mission.
The education of women who may already be unsuspecting victims of lesser-known types of DV
The education of Centers of Trust on the Black woman's needs - places Black women go because we trust we are safe here
The education of Centers of Must on the Black woman's needs - places Black women go only because we have to receive services here
3. Did you know we've expanded?
Our groundbreaking program to end DV cycles began at the 2 intersections of Black womanhood trauma - DV and being a Black woman. There are other intersections that may join as well, including homelessness (often due to economic abuser), alcohol/substance abuse (often due to the accompanying depression and hopelessness), and incarceration (often due to the abuser's ability to manipulate systems against the victim). We have been invited to begin a pilot of Empowerment through the Arts™ on location at The Beacon residential facility! The more we expand into new places where DV intersects with other co-occurring trauma, the more Black women we can support.
4. Did you know we've been funded?
Our nonprofit, Courageous Access, has received its first official grant funding from United Way of Central Iowa! This funding covers our groundbreaking program to end DV cycles. We now are able to add professional costume design, a costume budget per participant, professional lighting/sound/theatre stage for the final empowerment exercise, and have our sessions housed in a Black woman-owned therapy clinic, ForWard Consulting, LLC. Our first funded class begins on March 3, 2022!
5. Did you know YOU could make history?
We have several services we're already providing and several services we're building. Some of the ones we're in planning sessions with Black professionals on right now are:
Personal Security. Teaching survivors how to use the weapon we always carry with us - our BODY. We're in talks with 2 Black self-defense professionals right now!
Fixing Debt. Teaching survivors how to do debt recovery from the standpoint of likely economic abuse. We're reviewing the outline from a Black career banker to build the curriculum to co-publish!
Estate Planning. We're awaiting the first draft of the curriculum to co-publish with a Black career estate planning attorney. Equipping survivors with short and long term plans for:
How to ensure the abuser will not receive custody of your children in case of your passing
How to ensure your children receive financial assistance from your life insurance in case of your passing
Your tax deductible donation to start our community giving will put YOU in the Black history books as one of the people who helped Courageous Access create a curriculum series that can be facilitated for countless Black women to help rebuild a healthier legacy than the one they had before DV battle-scarred their lives. GIVE HERE
"Individual empowerment for the Black woman - Collective accountability for her community"