FAMILIES TOGETHER AGAINST RACISM
In support of the #BlackLivesMatter movement, we have added a page specifically dedicated to resources that help explain race and racism to children and youth. It is extremely important that we all work to create physically, emotionally, and culturally safer spaces for the Black, Indigenous and Persons of Color (BIPOC) community. Vancouver Virtual Families is interested in collaborating with individuals from the BIPOC community as a way to support and advocate for their needs within our local school communities. While we are open to ideas on how to make this happen, we want to launch a video library to help us address the issues of racism in BC schools. It is our hope that through sharing stories of lived experiences, we can identify ways in which we can create safer spaces in our schools for BIPOC children and youth. We are mindful that this kind of work can require a lot of emotional energy from those who have lived experiences of racism so we would like to express our gratitude in advance to those who would like to be a part of our team.
A STATEMENT FROM THE VVF FOUNDER:
It took me a while to come up with the right words to express my deep anger and sadness about the murder of George Floyd and my rising fear of this world we live in. As a privileged white woman, I have never experienced racism directed towards me and I know I will never truly understand how it feels. However, six years ago my perspectives changed and I had to stop silently sitting on the sidelines simply hoping the world would become a better place (oh if only this was actually helpful...). Today I feel the rage in solidarity, for I am the mother of a mixed race Indigenous child who (unbeknownst to her) experienced her first racist encounter from a complete stranger on the bus when she was barely two years old. I cannot pretend to understand or predict how racism will affect her personally as she grows up but I will raise her to know that I will always be a voice in her corner no matter what. As parents, we should not have to live with the fear that something horrible could happen to our child or someone else's child because of their race – yet, we still do. And as they say - "when George Floyd cried out for his mama - all mama's were summoned".
MMIWG. Colton Boushie. Chantel Moore. Michael Brown. Ahmaud Arbery. Trayvon Martin. Tamir Rice. Philando Castile. Walter Scott. Breonna Taylor. Samuel Dubose. Eric Garner. Oscar Grant. Terrence Crutcher. George Floyd. And a complete and utter lack of justice, accountability, respect, and basic human decency.
Black Lives Matter.
Indigenous Lives Matter.
Say Their Names.
To the non-BIPOC community: Recognizing your privilege (yes, you have it) does not have to be a negative thing. We are simply asking you to acknowledge that even if your life was hard, the color of your skin isn't making it harder. We challenge you to find your voice and stand up against racism. Show our children that we can make positive changes to previously learned behaviors. Lead by example and don't stay silent. Racism is your problem too and it's never too late to join the fight.
RACISM RESOURCES FOR CHILDREN & YOUTH
While many of our resources (ie. YouTube stories) can be accessed for free online, we would strongly encourage you to consider making a donation to a Black-run foundation or purchasing a copy of a book written and/or illustrated by a Black author.
KIDS, RACE & UNITY HOSTED BY ALICIA KEYS
Hosted by Alicia Keys, Nick News talks with founders and leaders of the Black Lives Matter movement, offer tools for families to have constructive conversations about race, and highlights teen activists who are fighting racial injustice in Kids, Race and Unity: A Nick News Special.
SESAME STREET TOWN HALL: STANDING UP TO RACISM
CNN's Van Jones and Erica Hill partner with "Sesame Street" for Coming Together: Standing Up to Racism, a town hall for kids and families.
LET'S TALK ABOUT RACE BY JULIUS LESTER
Listen as this YouTube storyteller reads this heart-warming story by Julius Lester, who was an American writer of books for children and adults and an academic who taught for 32 years at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Lester was also a civil rights activist, a photographer, and a musician who recorded two albums of folk music and original songs.
A KIDS BOOK ABOUT RACISM BY JELANI MEMORY
"We make kids books that matter. There are no dragons, silly bears, or cute tales about princesses. Only the challenging, empowering, and important topics that kids experience every day. Kids' lives are complicated, and our mission is to help kids and their grownups have honest conversations about things that matter." - Jelani Memory (To purchase this book:
SAME DIFFERENCE BY CALIDA RAWLES
"Same Difference is a charming book for young readers (4-8 year olds) that addresses the sensitive and sometime divisive issues of beauty and identity. It has a lyrical, upbeat air that begs to be read aloud and offers an engaging rhyme pattern for young children. Vivid illustrations capture the spirit and innocence of Lida and Lisa, two first cousins who find themselves at odds with each other over their physical differences. With the help of their wise grandmother, the girls soon realize that their bond is deeper than what they see and our differences are what make us beautiful." Please consider purchasing a copy of this book to support the author (www.samedifferencebook.com/buy.html)
SOCIAL JUSTICE BOOKS FOR KIDS
A wide variety of book lists for children and young adults discussing multiculturalism and social justice topics. These resources are rated and categorized based on age/reading level.
LOCAL BLACK-OWNED BUSINESSES & BLACK ENTREPRENEURS: ADVERTISING REQUEST
We are here to support you! If you are a Black-Owned business or a Black Entrepreneur located in Vancouver, Canada and you wish to advertise on our website free of charge, please fill out the following form and we will contact you within 48 hours. Thank you!