2016 was a horrible year for me personally. My beloved sister died suddenly; which sent me into an emotional tailspin. Every slight, comment and indignity seemed to matter and simultaneously nothing seemed to matter. Big P shouldered most of the parenting duties while I slowly crept out from the abyss of grief and pain.
As the year wore on, I realized so much of my energy was directed at trying to get my children’s schools to treat them as the intellectual equals – regardless of race, class, or gender. The presidential election with its crudeness and embrace of xenophobia, racism, sexism and anti-semitism didn’t help matters. Even people who I didn’t think supported the President Elect seemed emboldened. One school administrator proclaimed to African American parents that he was not accountable to parents- only to the board of directors. In addition, teachers were not accountable to us – only to him. So for $40,000 – this is the sh*tshow that I’m dealing with.
On December 31st, I decided to forgo my end of year annual fund contributions. I redirected my contributions to organizations that are supporting vulnerable Americans; the poor, women, minorities, gays and lesbians. This is my list:
- Project for the Performing Arts
- Planned Parenthood
- Southern Poverty Law Center
- Trevor Project
- North Carolina NAACP
- United Negro College Fund
- Little Essentials
- Children of Promise
My last contribution was to Brown University, where I obtained my undergraduate degree. They may not need it as much as the other organizations but I am incredibly grateful that they took a chance on me.
In 2017, I’m putting my money where my mouth is and in the hands of organizations that support the principles and ideals I value. Its the right thing to do and it feels good.
Happy New Year!