D3 is honored to celebrate and recognize Black History Month. We join the focus on Black wellness and health, and celebrating history to lift up voices to care for one another. We also join in the acknowledgement that Black history IS American history, Black culture IS American culture, and Black stories are essential to the ongoing story of America AND Santa Clara County. We will be recognizing and honoring Black Americans and Black history throughout the month.
Click on the included images to learn more about each of our highlighted Black Americans.
Celebrating Black History Month
Since the founding of the United States, African and Black Americans have been systemically and institutionally neglected, oppressed, and silenced. Black History Month is a time to recognize and honor all of the contributions, achievements, and legacies of Black Americans across our society. Black history is American history, and Black History Month is integral to the history of America.
For more than a century, generations of Americans have studied, learned from, and celebrated the legacies of Black change-makers and leaders in our community. In September 1915, Carter G. Woodson and Jesse E. Moorland founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH), an organization that was devoted to researching and promoting the achievements of Black Americans. Now known as the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, the group sponsored the first National Negro Week in 1926 and chose the second week in February to honor the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. In the 1960’s during the Civil Rights Movement, National Negro Week expanded to become the Black History Month that we all love and celebrate today.
Every American President since President Ford starting in 1976 has designated a theme for Black History Month. The theme for this year is “Black Health and Wellness” to highlight and honor the work of Black doctors practicing both Western medicine and other medicinal practices throughout the African Diaspora. This theme directly aligns with the work that we are doing here in Santa Clara County. Through the Public Health Department, the County offers Black Infant Health services to mitigate disparities in the American healthcare system that specifically affect Black women and their babies. These services work to address factors that negatively contribute to health such as chronic stress, social isolation, and racial inequities. I am proud of the work that Santa Clara County has done and will continue to do to promote a more just and equitable community for all of our Black residents and families.
In order to have a truly just and equitable society, we must do all that we can to protect voting rights, especially for our Black and Brown communities. There are many state legislatures that are actively passing restrictive voting laws – to create barriers to voting, with studies showing that these unnecessary and controversial measures disproportionately impact Black and BIPOC communities. The fight for basic civil rights and voting rights is still alive and well in this country-- it did not end in the 1960’s. Our democracy and our society are strongest when all of our diverse voices are listening to each other and working together. This Black History Month let’s recommit ourselves to fighting for a more equitable and inclusive society. We hope you will join us in celebrating Black History Month.