Yesterday (February 18, 2014), a national story-gathering campaign kicked off to acknowledge black men and boys as assets to society.
BMe Community, a high-growth, mission-driven social enterprise is leading this campaign, and has set a goal of getting thousands of people to share stories about black males they know who help others.
Trabian Shorters, former vice president of communities for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and founder of BMe Community said, “We believe that black men and boys are assets to society. So, we are asking people to share the stories about the black men they know – the coach, the pastor, the neighbor, the co-worker or the friend who inspires in an everyday kind of way.”
Shorters believes such stories are plentiful if we stop to think about them. He quotes data from the U.S. Census, W.K. Kellogg Foundation studies and researchers such as Ivory Toldson showing that one quarter of all adult black males are military veterans; black people start businesses at a higher rate than other Americans, black Americans give 25% more of their income to charities than do white Americans, and that black males are nearly twice as likely to be in college as they are to be in prison.
“Patriotic, enterprising and generous is far more normal than the other views of black males. If we told that truth more often, America would be stronger for it,” says Shorters.