As we conclude Black History Month, in recent weeks we have seen the manifestations of oppression in many forms — the invasion and war waged on Ukraine by Russia, reminding us of the impact of imperialism and authoritarian regimes; ongoing violence towards the Asian American Pacific Islander community across the country; the attacks on the rights and humanity of trans and queer students and families; the continued harmful rhetoric and bans on books and content that teach accurate history and address race; and the list goes on.
While some may wonder what some of these issues have to do with public education, we at the Nellie Mae Education Foundation are clear that we stand against all forms of violence and oppression. We are also reminded that our freedoms and liberation transcend lines of difference and geographies. As educator Ursula Wolfe-Rocca articulated in a recent Twitter post, “It can be overwhelming to witness/experience/take in all the injustices of the moment; the good news is that they are all connected. So, if your little corner of work involves pulling at one of the threads, you’re helping to unravel the whole damn cloth.”
As we give grace and hold ourselves and each other close, breathe, rest, and get fired up to keep going — we are also encouraged by the historical nomination of the first Black woman to the Supreme Court, Ketanji Brown Jackson. May she be protected, celebrated, and supported as she continues to work to unravel the threads of injustice. May this moment, in the daunting times we’re in, fuel us with hope. In efforts of expressing solidarity with Ukraine, the Asian American Pacific Islander community, and the LGBTQIA + community, check out these resources below:
- Philanthropy’s Response to Russian Invasion of Ukraine
- We Rise Together Town Hall: Asian Resilience, Power, & Solidarity — The Boston Foundation
- We Need LGBTQ-Affirming Learning Environments in Person or Otherwise | Learning for Justice
We will continue to do our part to manifest our commitments and values in how we do our work and in partnership with our grantees, community advisors, board, and other stakeholders.