Takeaways from #OYW Africa's First #BlackUnity Event

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By Simone Zhao

On July 10th, the OYW Africa leadership team led the first ever episode of the #BlackUnity campaign. Participants from around the world came together to speak on their visions for a world free of anti-blackness, and the concrete steps we must take to achieve this.

The #BlackUnity platform encourages open, transparent and uncomfortable conversations around issues of racism and racial justice.

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Here are some key points from the discussion:

  • “We cannot change what we cannot name”. Our panelists spoke on the importance of having uncomfortable conversations, including issues around white fragility, the need to recognise colour, the dangers of colourblindness and the need to learn through discomfort.

  • The definition of Black unity. Dara Latinwo spoke about the distance between the diaspora and the need for investment in Africa. Khanya Mkoto also touched on the issue of wealth disparities within African countries and the intersection between poverty and race.

  • Afrophobia and the importance of unlearning prejudice. Farai Mubaiwa explored the way history is used to perpetuate cultural disputes, and how unlearning this prejudice and relearning the ways in which African countries have supported each other is a key step for unity.

Anti-blackness is rooted in centuries of colonization and slavery, and the road to a world free of racism requires a tremendous amount of work. These points of discussion provide a framework for beginning to dismantle the structures of injustice and discrimination that have constantly threatened the way of life of black people, and the importance of unity and liberation for black people all around the world.

To learn more about the speakers, click here.

With thanks to our Africa Team!

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Isaac Olufadewa

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Levern Ramshubby

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Tolulope Aina

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Mary Helda Akongo

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Fahd Zaami

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Neeshad Shafi

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