April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) and Tarana Burke is looking to continue the #MeToo conversation by going on a tour to several Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) across the country. Burke, the founder of the #MeToo movement, made the announcement on Instagram.
“I’m so excited to finally announce this!! This has been a vision of mine for many, many years,” Burke’s caption reads. “Every year during April, which is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) college campuses around the country turn their focus towards dealing with sexual violence but very little activity happens on HBCU campuses during SAAM even though we know it’s happening.”
Burke says that in 2018 she spoke at more than 70 schools and surprisingly only two of them were HBCUs. She’s looking to change that by teaming up with Yaba Blay to “bring this right to the yard and provide a space for HBCU students to talk, vent, strategize and heal.” Dr. Blay is the creator and producer of a number of online campaigns including #PrettyPeriod – a visual celebration of dark-skinned Black beauty – and #ProfessionalBlackGirl – a web series and digital community dedicated to celebrating everyday, ‘around-the-way’ #BlackGirlMagic.
“While we are working in service to survivors of sexual violence from all walks of life, it’s always been about Black people, particularly Black women and girls. This tour is important because we know that Black women make up the majority of the student population at HBCUs,” Burke tells Blavity. “The college tour is an extension of our work to center marginalized communities in the movement to end sexual violence wherever it exists.”
According to the MeTooMvmt.org, each stop on the tour will include strategic convenings with campus leaders, a workshop for men and male-identifying individuals, and a fireside chat featuring special guests. The tour will be sponsored by The Root and Lifetime with free admission for the public.tarana burke