So many wounds seem to be bleeding, all at the same time. Crisis all around. Where do we begin?
Begin somewhere. Start small if you need to…just do something.
For me this week, it was a friend who reached out to say that they were thinking of us, they hurt with us and they understood. That seemingly small gesture made a huge impact.
It’s easy to feel as though you are just one person, one small business or just one blogger…what could you possibly do to make a difference?
All judgement aside, not everyone is cut out for the protests. You may not even support protests, but you do support social justice and equality. Maybe you aren’t sure what you support, but you love people and seeing all the hate is making you feel helpless.
Here are 10 actionable ways that you can help make a difference:
1. Listen. Really listen to people of color but do so understanding that though they may all face injustice at times, they are all unique and individual as are all human beings and therefore that one individual’s perspective may not represent everyone else’s.
2. Read something that may broaden your perspective. Fast Track Your Understanding of Racial Tension is a good starting point. This Fast Company article on Standing in the Gap and Allyship is helpful as well. And Lean Impact is an amazing resource to help mobilize start ups for social change.
4. Research and support black owned businesses. I understand objections to what may seem like handouts, but simple patronage of black owned business isn’t much different than a commitment to shop local. You are simply supporting through sales revenue. It’s a win-win.
5. Fact check racially charged tweets, posts, articles and podcasts before sharing. In the scientific community there is a rigorous peer review process. Wouldn’t it be great if social media had that too?
6. Show kindness whenever possible. This isn’t only applicable to racial minorities. Kindness is a powerful game changer.
7. Get to know people of a different ethnicity or racial group that live in your neighborhood, work with you/for you, or are colleagues in your profession or sector of business.
8. Practice introspection and examine your ideaologies and potential biases. Spoiler alert: we all have them.
9. Grab your cohorts and collaborate on ways to increase access to fresh, healthy food in neighborhoods that are primarily occupied by people of color.
10. Donate to reputable organizations that promote racial equality.