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Tel: 347-533-9102/3

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279 Empire Blvd, Brooklyn, New York 11225 

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Mon - Fri: 10am - 6pm

10 YEARS OF CRISIS INTERVENTION AND RAPID RESPONSE
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© 2016 Powered by BLACK WOMEN'S BLUEPRINT. Update ©2019 Ripple Catalyst Studio

ABOUT US

Our Mission

We work to place Black women and girls’ lives, as well as their particular struggles, squarely within the context of the larger racial justice concerns of Black communities.

We are committed to building movements where gender matters in broader social justice organizing so that all members of our communities gain social, political and economic equity.

 

We engage in progressive research, historical documentation, policy advocacy and organizing steeped in the struggles of Black women within their diverse communities and within dominant culture.

Our History

We began meeting in sister circles in 2008 in living rooms, backyards and around kitchen tables, where we grappled with the state of Black women in the U.S. across ethnicity/nationality, class, sexual orientation, identity, etc. Our main focus was the 2008 Democratic Primaries. While we developed our personal, critical consciousness, parallel to this process was the political and public debate around the Obama/Clinton primary elections where Black women were being asked whether we were voting our race or our gender. Both democratic candidates presented their “blueprints” for change but neither took full stock of the particular problems Black women are facing within their communities and in greater society (gender-violence, poverty, the over-criminalization of black women and girls among others). What was manifesting itself was the cultural tendency to erase Black women by conceptualizing white women as speaking on behalf of the rights of the sex and Black men as speaking on behalf of the race.

 

Something had to be done to unearth the intersections of race and gender in our own lives as Black women. Black women needed to offer their own voice, their own “blueprint” for change that equally reflected and benefited us, thus Black Women’s Blueprint was formed.

 

What makes BWB unique is our specific focus on Black women and our departure from the rubric of “women of color” which we find also often supports racial hierarchies and doesn’t fully allow for Black women to deal with the ever-present history and legacy of slavery, sexual and reproductive exploitation, and subsequent periods of holocaust.

Our Framework for Liberation

Black Women’s Blueprint is a transnational Black feminist organization which celebrates and seizes the opportunities of the African diaspora, all while mourning of the violent conditions that created it. Initially borne of the slave trade and the Middle Passage, and expanded by contemporary crisis on, and migration from, the African continent, the diaspora contains multitudes of individual testimonies which, when united, derive our true power as Black women.

 

Black Women’s Blueprint recognizes that uneven power relationships often exist between and among the many nations from which Black women come. We especially know how cross-border flows of ideologies, capital, politics, and power link Black women in varying ways. These flows define the choices Black women have on how and when to speak truth to power and fight back against what bell hooks calls “neo-colonial white supremacist capitalist patriarchy.” Black women often lead complicated and contradictory lives and there is no one-size-fits-all solution for the challenges we face.

 

Our work merges transnational feminism of the global South with an American Black feminist ethos of intersectionality knowing that, at different turns, each of us may rise and fall with great (un)privilege. In some moments, something about us might give us greater access than our sister. In those same moments, we remember how important it is to be our sister’s keeper - across borders, across difference, across generations.

Black Women’s Blueprint tells the world: Black women are not a monolith, but we are a movement.

The BWB Strategy

Our success and sustainability as a movement depends on four core strategies:

Human Rights Advocacy

We know that there will be no justice for survivors of sexual violence so long as there is no accountability and no meaningful spaces for survivor leadership. We work tirelessly towards reconciliation by paving alternative pathways for long-term harm-doer and oppressor reflection and redemption that fall outside the oppressive state-sponsored criminal justice and legal systems that daily threaten our very survival.

Critical Participatory Action Research

We believe that Black women are the experts on their own lives. We identify problems in our communities and find innovative solutions to solve them by equipping impacted communities to source and share their own stories. We encourage communities to collect and evaluate their own data and to use this information to synthesize new languages of violence and resistance that can be harnessed to build collective power and shift policy.

Transformative Justice

We use community development and asset-based community organizing to protect the human rights of all Black women and girls and to ensure lasting social and economic equity. We oppose the ongoing violation of these human rights and all forms of discrimination, including racism, sexism, and heterosexism. We mobilize to demand that all levels of domestic governance, from the federal United States government to governing bodies within every single state, city, and town, uphold international legal obligations set forth by the United Nations.

Cultural Preservation of Indigenous Knowledge

We believe that Black women are the experts on their own lives. We identify problems in our communities and find innovative solutions to solve them by equipping impacted communities to source and share their own stories. We encourage communities to collect and evaluate their own data and to use this information to synthesize new languages of violence and resistance that can be harnessed to build collective power and shift policy.