For this year’s Black History Month (BHM), we wanted to shine a light on Black Joy. BHM tends to focus on civil rights and slavery, but Black history is richer than generational trauma and the battle to freedom. From highlighting Black-owned businesses to Yelp’s Engagement, Diversity and Belonging team facilitating conversations that spark new perspectives, we brought joy in many facets.
To kick off the month, a couple of our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) partnered to bring together a panel where Black parents spoke on their experiences raising children. From family planning disparities in healthcare to tough, necessary conversations with their children on safety, Black parents have unique concerns.
In a distributed workforce, healthy boundaries are necessary while working remotely. We brought in a Black- and queer-run wellness consultancy, Spiritus Wellness, where we learned new tools for decreasing stress and anxiety. The best part? We created wellness plans that could be implemented almost immediately.
One of the most engaging events during BHM at Yelp was the fireside chat on the history of the Black Panther Party. We heard a first-hand account of the impact of this monumental organization out of Oakland, California. Throughout its existence, the Party offered a wide range of services including legal aid, food, housing, education, and healthcare.
The fun continued with plenty of Black DJ sessions and a shared opportunity to listen to a podcast from Brené Brown. Let’s continue to make a conscious effort to bask in Black Joy, even in the midst of an uphill battle. Black Joy is worth magnifying during BHM and year-round.