Father’s Day Gift Guide From Black-Owned Businesses

Father’s Day Gift Guide From Black-Owned Businesses

Father’s Day is just around the corner and time for shopping is growing perilously short. Depending on the Dad, finding a perfect gift can be much harder than you think which is why you should start looking now. Of course, you can always ask the special man in your life directly what he wants, but when you curate a gift on his behalf, it will be more heartfelt. Instead of sticking to the played-out options of ties, pens, and golf clubs, consider choosing a unique gift from one of the Black-owned brands in our round-up.

When it comes to Father’s Day gifts, the best ones are both sentimental and practical. Think about your dad’s hobbies, habits, and secret desires. Will he love a personalized art print or perhaps is he in need of something to help him relax on the weekends? Perhaps he has been looking for a way to overhaul his wardrobe, whatever you choose, these POC businesses are sure to help you make Father’s Day 2021 one to remember.

Goodee

This website is the brainchild of twin brothers, both of which are innovative Black men with a vision. There are a plethora of sustainable options to choose from for Dad’s or other meaningful men in your life this Father’s Day. Pick up some brightly colored Hammam Dot Towel sets to brighten up their bathroom or treat them to some self-care gifts from the bath and body section. No matter what you choose, the products are guaranteed to be thoughtful, high quality, and smile-inducing for the man you love.

Uncommon Goods

For the man in your life that loves customized creations, Uncommon Goods has a lot to offer. From specialty sugar cubes to create beer cocktails and “mine” liquor flask to luxury grilling utensils and beer-infused barbecue rubs, you are certain to find a gift that makes him smile. All of the products are made and sold by independent proprietors so you can pick and choose where to spend your money responsibly this Father’s Day.

GoldBelly

Nothing says I love you more than food. Most dads are the ones manning the grill on the holidays or bringing in the bacon for the family to enjoy. This year why not treat the food-loving father figure in your life to a truly unique gift. You can order meal kits, fully cooked meals, classes, or even a meal delivery subscription for the man in your life who loves to eat. The founder, Joe Ariel understands the connection that comfort food has with emotions and makes sure that a little bit of heart and soul goes into every delivery.

Golde Superfoods

Everyone wants their day to be as healthy as possible to enjoy everything life has to offer. One way to keep your dad healthy is with delicious superfoods. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be tasteless, and with delights from Golde, you can keep him fit and full this Father’s Day. This brand was created by a woman of color who wanted to find healthier options in the urban environment. You can set your dad up with Matcha mixes to boost his energy or blueberry-flavored drinks to help reduce his stress levels. In addition to superfoods to improve his internal health, they also offer a range of skincare items that will help turn back the hands of time and give him a natural glow.

Golden Grooming Co.

For men of color, skincare and grooming is often just an afterthought. If you want to give your dad a thoughtful gift that he can use all year long, consider picking up one of the bundles. There are beard oils, body washes, moisturizers, and more that are crafted from 100% all-natural products. The items are geared towards men of color though anyone can use them with equally superior performance. If you want to make him laugh, pick up The Grown Ass Man Box which offers a mix of everything the brand has to offer. To top it off, a percentage of their profit to students at HBCUs and other programs that support entrepreneurship for Black youths in underserved communities.

Gift Ideas From The Heart 

Here at The Narrative Matters, we are dedicated to speaking about topics that matter to you and to the culture. We pride ourselves in partnering with Content Publishers to bring topics and areas of interest that impact our readers to the forefront. If you are interested in growing your audience with content that matters, you can find out more here. We cover a range of genres from pop culture, lifestyle, and emerging trends to health, politics, education, and more. 

Photo Credits:

  • https://goldengroomingco.com/
  • golde.co
  • goldbelly.com
  • uncommongoods.com
  • https://www.goodeeworld.com/
Graduating Growth

Graduating Growth

Graduating growth is the idea that you have took the time to learn something new to accomplish a goal that has added value to your life. It can be a very minute lesson which can enrich you with the knowledge that can help the next person you may come in contact with.

This is another way of saying “greet one teach one” or “each one teach one”; whichever phrase works for you. The point of understanding is to learn something today and pass on the information tomorrow to whoever is ready and willing to hear it.

Knowledge is power, and the information from that power is the key to success; so nevertheless, continue to be a receiver of information, whether it’s large or small. Your dreams should become your goals because it takes a dream or idea to achieve them. That’s leveling up, and that equals the terms of graduating growth.  With God’s blessings first, there is nothing too hard to accomplish.

The doors of opportunities will continue to come open as long as you trust and believe within Him.

You will reach the true meaning of graduating growth. 


Mark 9:23: Jesus said if you can believe, all things are possible to those who believe. 

Matthew 17:20: And he said unto them, because of your little faith, for verily I say unto you. If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed. You shall say unto this mountain, remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. 

Catching Up with a Gay Fraternity in St. Louis

Catching Up with a Gay Fraternity in St. Louis

Fraternities and sororities are rapidly becoming the hot topics within the social media network, from community involvement and commitments to causes that they feel are important for change.

Just last week on Facebook a photo was circulating around several social groups, featuring a fraternity leader decked out in a pink suit with heels. So, now the narratives going around is to question whether this is environmentally accepted in what is supposed to be a straight order.

I had the opportunity to talk to another place that fraternities belong, and this place may not be getting too many blessings. However, gay fraternities are here and they are making people take notice of their power. Before today, I didn’t know such fraternities existed until I met one of the members.

His name is DQuann Knight and he is the Vice Chancellor of Theta Pi Upsilon Fraternity Inc. They are a Greek-lettered organization created by gay men of color for gay men of color. He is 27 years old and based in St. Louis, MO, and is known in the Greek world as Asclepius, the God of Healing.

So, sit back and let’s see what is going on with gay fraternities in St. Louis, as part on an ongoing series of stories reflecting the ever-changing world of sexual orientation.

Hello, how are you today? I am so happy to be speaking with you.

DQuann:  Hello, I’m doing fantastic, thank you so much. I am so honored to be here.

Tell us more about your decision to start a gay fraternity?

DQuann:  Well, I am not the founder of my organization, but I am on the founding line. The organization’s founder, Marcus Miller, saw a need in a community that was being pushed to the side or having to hide a side of themselves to “fit in”.

Interesting, so how long have you been involved with this organization?

DQuann:  I’ve been a part of this organization for two years. I crossed in the Summer of 2019.

What school are you connected with?

DQuann:  We are actually not based off of a school campus. We are socially based so anyone in the MSM of color community can apply to join. 

St. Louis is truly not a popular gay metropolis. Was it hard to get people involved? 

DQuann: That is a very true statement. It only seems hard because it is something new and unfamiliar, but as we recruit and get our name out there, we received a lot of inquiries.

Counting St. Louis, how many members are in this fraternity?

DQuann:  We are at a strong four members, but that’s due to change very soon as we are now in our recruiting season.

Do you all have any causes within the community that you are involved in?

DQuann:  We are involved with a few things. We are involved with Red Tides, which is our sexual health initiative, Chaos in Action, which focuses on mental health, and we have a scholastics award called E. Lynn Harris Scholarship.

Man, that is so wonderful for the local gay community. Tell me about you, and how do make time for yourself?

DQuann:  Well, I am a St. Louis native and I do a lot of the things within the fraternity. I also enjoy life outside of it, as well. I also love to travel.

When was the last time you had an event with your order?

DQuann:  Our last event as a fraternity was our street clean up within our community, but we have several up and coming events like our movie night on May 24th.

Do you travel to raise awareness about being gay and part of a fraternity?

DQuann:  That isn’t always why we travel, but when we do travel we make sure we are in our paraphernalia and make ourselves available to answer any questions someone has.

Being gay is not easy at times, but is there a certain standard you require from your organization?

DQuann:  Not per se a standard because we are about continuous growth as an individual, as a brother, and as a community, but there are certain responsibilities within the community and as an individual that we hold our aspiring and current members to. 

Thanks for your time. Do you have any websites that we can follow up on?

It was my pleasure, thank you for allowing me this opportunity. It is very much appreciated! Yes, we are on Facebook as Theta Pi Upsilon, and Instagram as Theta Pi Upsilon Fraternity Inc. Also, our website is www.thetapiupsilon.com, and if you click our ‘join us’ tab you can also send us an email, or email us directly at thetapiupsilon18@gmail.com.

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Negro League

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Negro League

The Negro Leagues were founded more than a hundred years ago in 1920. In 2006 Congress recognized NLBM as “America’s National Negro Leagues Baseball Museum” which has allowed many past, present, and future generations to view this important part of our history. Finally, in 2020, there was a monumental announcement that the stats from the league would finally be included as part of the official MLB listings. For baseball fans and supporters of the culture everywhere, this was an important step in recognizing the sports talent of people of color. If you are new to baseball or simply a casual fan of Negro League baseball, we have a list of seven little-known facts about the league for you to enjoy.

#1 Original Negro National League Teams

The Negro National League was originally formed in 1920, however, not many people can list the names of the original teams. There were eight teams at the start of the league, all made up of African American and colored players. The list includes:

  • Cuban Stars
  • St. Louis Giants
  • Dayton Marcos
  • Chicago American Giants
  • Indianapolis ABCs
  • Chicago Giants
  • Detroit Stars
  • Kansas City Monarchs

#2 The First Season Of The Negro League Was Canceled

Due to the Chicago Race Riot in 1919, the National Guard occupied the Giants ballpark. As a result, no games could be played on the field. Rube Foster, the mind behind the Negro League and also an accomplished baseball player himself, canceled the first season for lack of play space. That didn’t stop the league from moving forward, and they went on to play their first season on a different date.

#3 Josh Gibson & His Negro League Success

There is an astounding number of Black baseball players that found fame and recognition in the Negro Leagues. Josh Gibson, however, is one of the lesser talked about but highly prolific players who participated in the Negro League. During his career that spanned 17 years, he scored over 800 home runs, 384 of which were accomplished during his time in the Negro League. He also went on to become the Negro League World Series Champion twice and achieved the title of All-Star 12 times.

#4 The Oldest Player In The MLB Was Black

Most sports players start out when they are quite young and tend to retire well before they reach middle age. You might be amazed to know that not only was the oldest player to start out in sports Black but also that he happened to be a part of the Negro League. Leroy Paige, often called Satchel, was one of the most prolific players and pitchers in the history of the Negro League. Unlike most players, he actually debuted as a rookie at the wizened age of 43. He played at the top of his game even over younger players for many years and played his last game just before his 60th birthday. Aside from being the oldest to play in an MLB game, he was the first Black man to pitch in the World Series and the American League.

#5 Negro Leagues Baseball Stamps

It is pretty common for commemorative stamps to be issued that mark special events in American history. While many sports, musical, and presidential stamps among others have been put into print, Negro League Baseball stamps were absent. In 2010, the U.S. Postal Service released stamps that were meant to all-black professional baseball leagues. The pair of stamps released was commemorative and have a face value of 44 cents. At the time of their release, this was the regular postage rate though current stamp prices have increased. The Negro Leagues were also honored with this stamp release and as a bonus, they were issued during the 20th-anniversary celebrations of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. One of the commemorative stamps features the image of Rube Foster, who is was the main person credited with the creation of the league in 1920.

#6 The Negro League Was Finally Recognized As A MLB

Although the Negro National League is well known and the stats of the players tabulated amongst baseball enthusiasts, it was not officially recognized as part of the major leagues. In 2020 the Major League Baseball association officially recognized the Negro National League as part of the Major Leagues. The stats and accomplishments of the players have been added to the official roll books which is not only a great honor, but a great sign of respect to the 3,400 players that participated in the sport from 1920 through 1948 as part of the Negro Leagues.

#7 The End of Sports Segregation & HBCU’s Caused The Negro Leagues Downfall

While it is well known that the exclusion of people of color in MLB led to the creation of The Negro Leagues, not many know inclusion was the cause of its downfall. The great depression hit America hard and affected people of color even worse. This caused the Negro League to begin unraveling which was further aided by the absence of Foster as the head of the league. Although the Negro League did rebound for a while under new ownership, HBCU’s and other graduate schools had a bittersweet effect of draining the leagues of many of their most talented players. Once MLB teams started recruiting Black baseball players and other players of color in 1946, the Negro Leagues slowly started losing their top players which eventually led to its disbandment in 1960.

Teaching The Past To Our Future Generations

Here at The Narrative Matters, we are dedicated to speaking about topics that matter to you and to the culture. We pride ourselves in partnering with Content Publishers to bring topics and areas of interest that impact our readers to the forefront. If you are interested in growing your audience with content that matters, you can find out more here. We cover a range of genres from pop culture, lifestyle, and emerging trends to health, politics, education, and more. 

 

Image Sources:

  1. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/575968239814153579/
  2. https://news.wttw.com/2019/07/24/chicago-organizations-commemorate-100th-anniversary-race-riots
  3. https://baseballhall.org/hall-of-famers/gibson-josh
  4. https://baseballhall.org/hall-of-famers/paige-satchel
  5. https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sdut-negro-leagues-baseball-featured-on-new-stamps-2010jul15-story.html
  6. https://www.wgbh.org/news/commentary/2020/12/30/major-league-baseball-finally-recognizes-negro-league-achievements-it-needs-to-do-more
  7. https://ohiocapitaljournal.com/2020/02/20/on-the-100th-anniversary-of-the-negro-leagues-a-look-back-at-what-was-lost/
Should mental health be a part of the school syllabus?

Should mental health be a part of the school syllabus?

According to the CDC, 7.1 percent of children in the United States have been diagnosed with anxiety. 3.2% have been diagnosed with depression. Relatedly, suicide is now the 3rd highest cause of death in people aged 10-24. The millions of kids who deal with issues that have been culturally stigmatized as “adult-only” problems probably feel lost. Their parents probably don’t know what to do.

Mental health would be a significant addition to a school syllabus to address this issue. If school is intended to prepare kids for life, how can mental health be considered any less than part of that preparation? The answer to how this should be applied in all schools, however, may be a little more complicated.

What kids are being told in school

When kids are young and in school, they receive a lot of conflicting information. They are told never to bully others far more often than how to mentally deal with being bullied. They are constantly bombarded with the idea that tests scores and numbers define their careers for the rest of their lives. However, they are not told how to mentally cope with a bad grade, or deal with the pressure of being defined by a score out of 100.

Physical health is a mandated aspect of schools in the United States, intended to promote self-responsibility and, hopefully, enjoyment of physical activity for a lifetime. In response to how much information and stress modern kids have to process, curricular mental health, in theory, should be used to promote just as much self-responsibility. Kids should enjoy mental activity for a lifetime as well!

But this depends partly on what mental health in a school syllabus ends up looking like.

Source: Unsplash @Dan Meyers

The Good and bad of teaching mental health

How everyone defines “mental health” is different. This could create programs that present conflicting information, potentially creating even more distance between kids and a healthy mental state. To use the PE example, do you have a lasting relationship with enjoying physical activity due to your experiences in PE? Maybe you do, but maybe you don’t.

However, the good outweighs the bad when it comes to teaching mental health, so long as it is utilized properly. Talking about mental health can help kids release a lot of stress, promoting healthy relationships with their peers. Training teachers on how to deal sensitively with mental health issues can also go a long way. Mindfulness, relaxation, and art should be included aspects of more curriculums, giving students a break from the stress of social media and test scores.

Additionally, these programs should not forget to address the mental health of teachers as well. Valuing teachers as part of this new curriculum could go a long way to improving the stress level of their classrooms.

Conclusion

Due to how the statistics are stacking up, dealing with mental health in schools is hardly even a question anymore – it’s a necessity. The way it is handled, however, relies on how we teach mindfulness, how open we are to unique mental health situations, and how the programs are implemented.

Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you by working with Content Publishers in the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.

From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their generations.

Recent Corporate Commitments To Racial Equality

Recent Corporate Commitments To Racial Equality

Racial equality is an issue that has been on the books for quite some time. However, in recent years, the spotlight has been on companies and what they are doing to implement real change. The idea of inclusive growth is neither new nor a passing trend. The nation’s legacy of racism and the growing public outcry for inclusivity has spurred business leaders in the private and economic sectors to do what they can to help level the playing field.

The Corporate Response To Call For Change

The pandemic has affected the Black population more severely than any other in America. When paired with the wholesale abuse of power by the police department and the justice system, movements that support people of color have picked up steam. NAACP, Black Lives Matter, UndocuBlack Network, and the Color of Change among many others have called for those in power, specifically corporations, to support change and racial equality in the country. While businesses usually take a neutral stance in issues of politics, religion, and race, these calls simply could not be left unaddressed. Many leaders in both the private and public sectors have publicly shown their support of the African American Community. The method in which support has been shown varies depending on the company, but every ounce of support is appreciated.

How Corporate America Is Supporting Racial Equality

Some companies are using philanthropy to show their support while others are giving direct donations to communities in need. While these are welcomed, they are more of a stop-gap than a working solution. Changing business practices by investing in POC communities and making racial equality changes from the top will support more lasting change. In various industries, CEOs have taken note and made a point of adding more black and other people of color not only to their employee roster but also into higher positions of power. To take things even further, a large number of companies have used their influence to force or encourage change within local institutions and civic organizations.

Supporting The POC Community Where It Counts

Companies from all industries such as fashion, technology, beauty, and more have committed their wallets to the cause. These funds have gone to help raise awareness about racism and its effects in addition to helping communities that have a high population of POC. Not to be overlooked are the billions of dollars corporate America has poured into funds that are dedicated to increasing diversity in the workplace and also ending police brutality. In fact, by the middle of 2020, there were close to 2 billion dollars pledged by operations to help and address racial inequity as a whole. One of the most notable contributions is by Google. As the world’s largest and most used search engine, they are in a unique position to effect real change in the USA. They provided $25 million dollars worth of Google Ad Grants to groups and organizations that are fighting racial injustice and working towards racial equality. The importance of these grants is that they allowed groups that may not have been able to afford prime placement to disperse critical information to the public.

Companies Fighting Back Against Racial Inequality

While not everyone has joined the fight, there are plenty of companies both large and small that are supporting the fight against racial inequality. PayPal has pledged $530 million to help support businesses owned by black people and other minorities. Google has made a point of increasing the number of blacks and other POC represented in the C-Suite. Bank of America has pledged $1 billion to help with racial inequality caused by the pandemic. PepsiCo used $400 million to create an imitative that deals with racial inequality in business relationships and hiring decisions. Amazon has distributed 10 million dollars to a dozen organizations fighting racial inequality.

More than money is needed to help root out and cure racial injustice. Corporations have also issued statements and promise to address internal issues that cover a lack of diversity and racially charged business practices. Diversifying the leadership is one of the main ways corporations have stated they will start remedying racial inequality. A diverse power structure will better place companies in a position to not only identify bias but to mitigate it more effectively. At the retail level, many popular chain stores have made a commitment to remove theft deterrent casing from black products which have long been seen as symbolic segregation in the POC community. This year has already seen major rebranding of many products that were racially charged or otherwise formed on antiquated ideas that supported racist stereotypes.

Is It Enough To Make A Difference?

Race has been a problem in the country since well before its formal creation. As long as it has taken for the country to be formed, you can expect it to take just as long for the population to reach some semblance of equality. Slavery was abolished more than a century ago, but segregation was abolished less than 60 years ago. Racial discrimination has been a problem ever since, but with time, education, and a concentrated effort, the population can start to put real changes into effect. While the monetary pledges and even the changes to the corporate structure may never be enough, it is a great start to help the nation start to heal. True racial equality will happen when people stop viewing those around them as different, but rather as fellow human beings. Until then, changes in the corporate field will help fuel changes from the top down.  

Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you. We work with Content Publishers in each of the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.

From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, the Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their genera.

To learn more visit The Narrative Matters

Image Sources:

  1. https://ssir.org/articles/entry/five_practices_for_developing_and_staying_accountable_to_racial_equity_goals
  2. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2020/dec/28/tech-platforms-vowed-to-address-racial-equity-how-have-they-fared
  3. https://www.guidinggolden.com/striving-for-racial-equity
  4. https://www.brookings.edu/essay/from-commitments-to-action-how-ceos-can-advance-racial-equity-in-their-regional-economies/
  5. https://about.google/commitments/racialequity/
  6. https://www.foodbusinessnews.net/articles/16377-commitment-to-racial-equality-requires-consistent-effort