Each year, February is a reminder of the importance of honoring the Black community’s achievements and history in the United States. Though civil rights activists have advocated for the recognition of Black history since the 1920s, Black History Month was first officially recognized by the US government in 1976 by President Gerald R. Ford. This year’s theme is “Black Health and Wellness,” a cause near and dear to the hearts of all of us here at LifeWorks NW.
While the ongoing COVID-19 surge in our community makes it difficult to come together at the moment, there are still a few events that you can attend to learn more about the Black communities that have helped shape America.
Cascade Festival of African Films: A free hybrid virtual/in-person celebration of 30 curated films by African directors from 18 different nations, airing February 4 – March 5.
We Had Jazz: An exhibition of work by local photographer Carl Henniger, featuring pictures of Jazz legends on their stops in Portland. Viewable at the Collins Gallery at the Multnomah Central Library February 1 – March 31.
Black History Month Passport: You can request a passport at Lake Oswego Library for a variety of Black History Month events, and return it by March 11 for a chance to win a gift card to a local Black-owned business.
Black History Month online events: Library of Congress and National Archives pay tribute to generations of African Americans with online photo, panel, book talks and other on-line events.