Monterey Bay Black Folks Event Calendar
Week of Mon July 6th through Sun July 12th, 2020
About the Monterey Bay Black Folks Event Calendar

The purpose of the Monterey Bay Black Folks Event Calendar is to connect the Black Community of CSU Monterey Bay with the local Black Communities of the Greater Monterey Bay Area. The Calendar is edited by Steven Goings, MSW and is entirely voluntary and looking for institutional support. To submit an event for possible inclusion, please send to AfricanQuazar@gmail.com. The plan is to send out the Calendar every Monday at 9 AM for those who wish to receive it. The deadline for Monday submissions is midnight of the previous Thursday.
Steven's Take

Bi-monthly CSUMB & Black Community Town & Gown Forum

July 6 from 6 to 7:30 PM. Contact Steven Goings at AfricanQuazar@gmail.com or sgoings@csumb.edu for zoom link and password.

If you are a leader in or concerned member of the Black community and are receiving this calendar, I encourage you join our first meeting on July 6th.

In the meantime, I have also created an informal survey to ascertain the needs of the Black Community. I encourage everyone reading who has ideas about out to improve our communities to take this survey: Monterey Black Folks Needs Survey


Steven is a Village Project, Inc. Jubilee Campaign Leader!

Due to COVID-19, The Village Project, inc. will not be able to present their 5th Annual Luncheon Fundraiser this year. Nevertheless, it is crucial that the community continue to support this most outstanding organization. In fact, I can tell you most sincerely, that I personally consider The Village Project, Inc. to be the most effective primarily Black/African Heritage serving institution in Monterey County! That is why, I hope that you will join me in generously contributing to The Village Project Jubilee Fundraising Campaign through the month of July. The goal is $50,000. Every week we will highlight one of The Village Project, Inc.'s many programs in the Monterey Black Folks Calendar.

The unequal impact of the pandemic on the African American community has been compounded by more police killings of African Americans. In addition to the ongoing stressors of inequality, both these violent stressors weigh heavily on the community. Your response and donation is an important and needed reminder that folks in the wider community care.

See the weekly progress towards our goal and make your donations at https://www.villageprojectinc.org/donations .
The Village Project Mae C. Johnson Education & Cultural Enrichment Academy and the Class of 2020


This week we highlight the Mae C. Johnson Education & Cultural Enrichment Academy and the Class of 2020!

The Village Project celebrates all of its students for their resilience and perseverance amid racist systems and this pandemic; particularly the graduating Class of 2020. Two such graduates are E’raya J. from York School and Anthony K. from Seaside High School. Both credit The Village Project’s Afterschool Academy and its donors in supporting their growth and achievements as learners and individuals. With individualized tutoring, E’raya gained the confidence and skills to read despite her vision challenges and learning differences. With their support, she achieved High Honor Roll her senior year and received the York Faculty Award for her enormous contributions to the School and community. E’raya knows firsthand what support from The Village Project can do, so she’s back as a tutor; paying it forward. Similarly, with the support of TVPI tutors over many years, Anthony was able to earn 4.0 grades in his senior year; overcoming language barriers and learning differences. Both graduates plan to continue their education, a desire not present before TVPI’s interventions: Anthony hopes to study music composition and E’raya plans to explore a degree in the medical field. Congratulations, E’raya, Anthony, and all of the 2020 graduates Kindergarten to Ph.D.!

The Village Project’s work is unconditional; your support is crucial.

In the Spotlight: January Brown


January L Courtney Brown is a Peer Recruiter/Professional Expert for Family to Family Monterey County. January speaks and does presentations to different organizations in the community about becoming a resource family for children in the Monterey County welfare system. January specializes in providing resources on how to become a successful foster parent. Statistics have shown that children do much better when they are able to stay in their own communities, schools, and churches. January enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, crafting, mentoring and giving back to her community. January believes that in the words of Dr Martin Luther King Jr “Not everyone can be famous, but everyone can be great because greatness is determined by service. You only need a heart full of grace and a soul generated by love.”

January's Take

"Monterey County currently has so many children and youth in foster care right now. Unfortunately, we don’t have enough foster homes to place them in. We desperately need more foster families who live in Monterey County so that we can keep kids safe, in their community, close friends and family.

To address the growing need for foster parents, Monterey County Family 2 Family is trying to spread the word to as many people as possible in hopes to bring awareness. We ask the question, “Who can be a foster parent?” www.f2fmc.org

Monterey County Family to Family is working locally as part of a state- wide effort to recruit new foster parents. If you are interested, please let me know and I can help arrange interviews with of our our courageous foster families."
Truth Be Told w/ Dirrick Williams
In Dirrick Williams' inaugural column for the Black Folks Calendar, we look back at an article that Williams wrote for the Cedar Street Times following the Ferguson Uprising in response to the police shooting of Michael Brown.

Williams, was himself the target of racially motivated violence in 2018 and will explore that in next week's Truth Be Told Column.


Recently, during a conversation regarding the events of Ferguson, Missouri, a white friend asked, “Why do YOU GUYS always do that?”
A hurtful question. To me a stupid question. I have come to realize questions such as these cannot be answered but must be addressed and overcome. This question is in line with questions like, how does it feel to be black? What do “you guys” like to be called? How come black people can’t swim? Can “you guys” get a tan?

I was stuck on what he meant by “you guys.” I wondered if he truly identified with this sense of separation and implied superiority. And I was offended by his use of the word “always.” “Always” means in the past, in the present, and in the future. “Always” is an extremely powerful word; and in this case it is filled with judgment and condemnation.

I wanted to reply belligerently, “Yeah, you’re right WE always do that,” “WE” always behave “that” way. Instead, I politely re-directed our conversation. I am sure he was completely unaware or too insensitive to consider the full impact of his question.

With this in mind, I did what he could have easily done to answer his own question (if he actually car ed enough to do so),....

About the Above Ghana Tour...

Families can sign-up directly for the Ghana tour by following the information in the above flier. However, The Village Project, Inc. has received funding for 10 scholarships. If you would like an opportunity to be sponsored by The Village Project, Inc., please contact Regina Mason directly at regina@villageprojectinc.org or at 831 392 1500 . Mrs. Mason would like applicants to know that your family MUST be available to attend each day of the tour: " It is better to let the funds go to another family in another project than to sign up and not follow thru and participate. Thanks!" -- Regina Mason


Secure the Bag Registration Link: Click Here
4 New Photos from Nic Coury Below Photographer Nic Coury has launched a new portrait project highlighting the voices of Black people in Monterey. He does a photo shoot while asking the subject how they are doing in light of the George Floyd killing and recent protests.

If you would like to participate in this project, message Nic Coury on Facebook. If you aren't on Facebook, you can email me (Steven Goings) at africanquazar@gmail.com and I will forward it to him.
Tyller Williamson: “I definitely have up and down feelings. On one side, I feel encouraged there is a level of energy surrounding the struggle, and folks reaching out asking how they can be true allies, gives me a lot of hope," says Tyller Williamson, who was elected to Monterey City Council in November 2018. He was the youngest, first openly gay and first black man elected. “At the same time, why are we even still here in the first place? It’s frustrating, because I understand the need for us to make some dramatic change and create this revolution, but recognizing that we still live in a democracy and there is still a need to educate folks about what the struggle is and how we overcome that. I just hope we continue to find ways to work with each other to move forward.”
Alana Myles: “There is something a little different about it. There is more buy-in to the needs of the African-American community and other communities of color. I am encouraged by seeing the age range of people involved, as well as more white people who are supporting the movement," says Alana Myles, a trustee for the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District board in #Monterey #California . “I am also feeling stressed, because, being in education, I want to ensure all of our kids are going to get the education they need to be successful. There are certain needs that communities of color need, but aren’t there for the majority of marginalized communities. Teachers, and really everyone involved in the school district, need to develop an awareness that we’re here to service all students, and we need to check our own implicit bias.”
Dirrick Williams: “I am excited. I go back to the Malcom X mentality of “any means necessary,” so I really enjoy watching these people stand up, to seeing them do whatever they need to do to bring light to their voice and no longer deal with the oppression," says Dirrick Williams, an author in #Monterey #Californa who also works as a life coach and inspiration speaker. "But the thing that frightens me most is if we don’t come together and become an organization of hierarchy and agenda, we may lose. We need to be able to organize and put it into a place where there are strategic arms of the mission in order to be effective.”
Simeon Etoria: “It’s difficult to process. In the majority of the Black community, we don’t really speak about our emotions. We were taught to hide our emotions and don’t speak about them. So when you see George Floyd being executed, people react without thinking, because we can’t process our emotions. It’s hard to process, because it’s all unraveling so fast. At the beginning of all this, I was pissed. Black people have been suppressed so long, but a lot of people can’t see it, because they’re in their own bubble. I’m feeling anger, sadness and hurt. How much I have cried this month and last, I haven’t cried that much since my grandmother died from cancer," says Simeon Etoria ( @simeon.etoria ), a realtor in #Carmel #California . “It’s great seeing 50 states protest. It’s the biggest civil rights protest in history, and it’s opening eyes. It’s easier not to face it, because discomfort is what we avoid. Now that it’s in the limelight and people have to see it, because without discomfort there is no change or growth.”
Free Webinar

Black Minds Matter
announcing confirmed guest speaker Professor Ivory Toldson from Howard University
hosted by J. Luke Wood & Donna Y Ford

A Five Part Series Beginning July 16, 2020

Addressing the Parallels Between the Policing of Black Lives
and Schooling of Black Minds
Useful Links:


  • Here is something the Monterey County Branch NAACP is working on. You can send your entries directly to lbogene@yahoo.com

  • Check out the list and add your bio and photo to it.

  • We all know the so-called criminal justice system treats our folks much more harshly than others, sometimes just having community members show up at court can make a difference in how things turn out.

  • Check it out or add your favorite to the list

  • With so few African Americans working in our K-12 and higher education systems, our kids have too few opportunities to see professionals and role models who look like them. We are looking for Black community members and professionals who can be called on to be occasional guest speakers in local classrooms.

Black Voices and Photo Portrait Project
  • Local photographer Nic Coury has launched this Black Portrait Project and looking for subjects. If interested in posing for a professional picture message him on Facebook or send me (africanquazar@gmail.com) your contact info for me to forward.

  • Just the basic public contact and position info

  • Click on this google document to share your thoughts about what is needed in the Black community. We will prioritize them for further action.

  • Check out the current list of churches, update existing entries or add new ones.

Monterey Bay Black Folks Weekly Event Calendar 
Submit to AfricanQuazar@gmail.com