October: Black Girl Festival & #BHMWithSaabirah
During the month of October I celebrated black history month with a series of posts on a range of topics focused on the black British experience. Catch all of those posts on my #BHMWithSaabirah page. I also collaborated with some of my favourite people this month.
I went to a ton of events this month, if you follow me on social media you would of caught some of the action. I went to five events in total and experienced a soft launch for a new black owned Caribbean take away in Bank - Lunch At Baygo.
I have covered a few of those events already, I still have two more posts coming for the last two events I went to. In this post I thought it would be good to do a quick recap on the Black Girl Festival.
I also wanted to speak about my Black History Month series #BHMWithSaabirah. Reflecting on what I've learnt throughout this series.
Black Girl Festival
The Uk's first Black Girl Festival! 249 supporters helped Paula & Krystal raise over £7,000 for "the UK's first arts & cultural festival celebrating black British women and girls".
I knew of Paula and Krystal's work before, so there's no surprise they were able to gain this much support for such a huge event.
|Met the awesome Tracey at BGF ❤|
I love what black women are doing for each other. Providing black women and girls with events to uplift and to educate. In this time where black women are denied a voice and a seat at most tables, it is vital to have spaces like these to encourage each other to be proud.
Black Girl Festival was a day for black women and girls to meet new people, network, support a black owned business or two, to enjoy some good food and music.
I went to two of the panel discussions; Natural Hair and Mental Health & Self Care.
Hearing the The Slumflower talk about colourism gave me life. The topics of texture discrimination and coloursim amongst other issues within the black community inspired my Understanding & Utilising Your Privilege post.
I do believe we need to continue the conversation around colourism, however we need to near more about the ways to remove colourism from our communities. The conversation will encourage an understanding, which is what a lot of people need. They need to understand why colourism exists in order to end it.
The mental health panel was my favourite. The panel was filled with my favourite writers and influencers. I also got to learn about the work of two women I didn't know about. Mental health is always an interesting topic, even more so when the conversation is with black women.
Therapist Guilaine, was great. It was interesting hearing a professional be so real and honest about the impact social media and race has on our mental health. Discussions around therapy and healthy ways to utilise social media is key.
I didn't realise there was an issue with the way mental health is addressed in the black community until I started to experience mental health issues of my own. It's kind of like being in an ignorant bubble, when faced with an issue head on you're exposed to everything. The Stigma is real and needs to end, black people are not robots we all have emotions, doubts and are allowed to just be, without all the armour.
I plan on doing a more in depth post on the points made on the mental health panel. I know what I'm like, I'll get carried away and before I know it this post 5,000 words. It best I keep this post short and sweet. Read - Why I Attend Self Care & Mental Health Events to know more about the mental health panel.
Overall BGF was amazing, I got to support some more black owned businesses and see some familiar faces. An event for black women by black women was needed. A really postive way to end the month, proud to say I attened the first Black girl festival.
I'll be completely honest this Black History Month series was poorly organised. I planned out posts but quickly remembered why I don't normally plan posts. I wouldn't say I wasn't motivated, I think I just gave myself way too much to do in such a short space of time. Ideally I would of done all the posts and had them up and scheduled, ready for me to do the promo on social media. That didn't happen,I don't know if you could tell but...most of my posts were done days and even hours before they went live.
I work better when I have time and I can just freely write about whatever is on my mind. That's all good and well for a time, but I need to start planning and scheduling posts.
I honestly didn't anticipate how well this series would be received. Not only have my followers gone up but my page views have increased massively. I really didn't expect it, big moments like this send my mind into overdrive. Normally I fill my head with negative thoughts, telling myself that those good moments weren't for me, preparing myself for something bad to happen. Surely all this good has to come with some bad?
Instead of feeding those negative thoughts, I spoke louder about my achievements. When I felt good I would tweet about it, when an exciting opportunity came up or someone recognised me at an event I would tell my family about it. At times speaking positively on my achievements felt uncomfortable and forced. I recognised that it was only uncomfortable because the negatives were a lot easier to believe.
More followers on my Twitter and Instagram has me closer to reaching 1k followers. I wasn't watching the numbers until I got to this point and realised that reaching this number gives me the chance to give back to those who have given me so much support. When I hit 1k on twitter & Instagram I will be celebrating with a giveaway.
This month has been amazing, I have been unapologetically me, in my own special way and that has given me so much more confidence and opportunities. I hope November is just as great!
Thank you everyone for supporting me throughout this month and to everyone who has supported me from the beginning ❤
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Email me: Saabirahlawrencexo@gmail.com