Founded by the African Women's Development Fund USA (www.usawdf.org) and recognized by the United Nations and Congress in August 2011, Black Philanthropy Month was created as an annual, global celebration of African descent giving in the United States and worldwide. BPM 2013 is a multimedia campaign to inform, inspire and invest in Black philanthropy leadership online and offline as well as locally and globally starting with a month of activities in August 2013 and extending concerted efforts through February 2014.
The month of August has become a momentous time in the global history of the Black giving movement. Entering its third year of observance, Black Philanthropy Month 2013 (BPM 2013) is an unprecedented coordinated initiative to strengthen African-American and African descent giving in all its forms. High impact events, media stories, service projects and giving opportunities compose the campaign, which kicks off in August 2013 and continues through February 2014.
"Black Philanthropy Month gives our diverse communities an opportunity to celebrate and renew their rich, shared traditions of giving, self-help and innovation throughout the US and the world," says Dr. Jackie Copeland-Carson, Executive Director, African Women's Development Fund USA (AWDF USA).
Coinciding with commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and Dr. King's unforgettable "I Have a Dream" speech, BPM 2013 provides both time for reflection on the state of the "dream" a half century later and calls for action to address the most pressing challenges of the 21st century.
With a base of activities in place, the primary goals of the campaign are to inspire people to improve their communities locally and globally, give back in smarter and more strategic ways and transform people's lives for the better. Self organized events, community conversations and charitable fundraising in recognition of BPM 2013 are encouraged.
Events across the country start in August 2013. Special gatherings taking place in cities nationwide include: a summit on Black philanthropy on Martha's Vineyard; a Northern California benefit in support of improving maternal health in Africa; and a moderated panel discussion in Charlotte commemorating the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington while examining the history and possibilities of African American giving and civic engagement.
Click here for AWDF USA events. A regularly updated calendar of events can be found at BlackPhilanthropyMonth.com.
According to Tracey Webb, founder of BlackGivesBack.com, BPM 2013's media hub, "Combining the power of print, broadcast and digital media will strengthen Black philanthropy's voice and increase its impact for new times."
BPM 2013 also aims to expand the ways that people give. Fundraising efforts and community drives to be mounted and publicized in August and beyond include Black Gives Back to School (school supplies and clothes); Community Investment Network 2013 National Conference (giving circles and collective giving); and AWDF USA's Mother Africa Campaign (maternal health).
"We expect to see more people giving in strategic, new ways as well as groups investing in Black philanthropic know how and leadership, across generations," says Valaida Fullwood of the Giving Back Project.
"Empowering communities to be the change they wish to see will help shape the philanthropic landscape of the 21stcentury," says Chad Jones, Executive Director, Community Investment Network.
Beginning this August, help us renew the commitment of time, voice or money to be a part of Black Philanthropy's future. Join the campaign to create a diverse global community that Dr. King spoke of, thousands marched for and you can be a part of.
In addition to AWDF USA, Black Philanthropy Month 2013 organizers include the Giving Back Project, Community Investment Network and Black Gives Back along with a growing list of partners and allies.