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Uplift Black culture and learn about Black history in Victoria, BC and throughout Canada this February
February 1st marks the start of Black History Month, a time to learn about and celebrate the many contributions of Black people throughout history. In Canada, this year’s theme is “Black Excellence: A Heritage to Celebrate; a Future to Build,” focusing not just on the history of Black Canadians, but on moving toward a better future.
The theme is meant to coincide with the 10th year of the International Decade of People of African Descent (IDPAD), which the UN General Assembly proclaimed in 2013 to run from 2015-2024. It focuses on highlighting the diverse culture and contributions of people of African descent while working to protect their rights and improve their quality of life. As the decade draws to a close, it's a chance to reflect on progress made and opportunities for improvement on a regional, national and international level.
In Victoria, there are many opportunities this month to explore Black history through local perspectives and stories, as well as Canada-wide ones.
Check out our roundup of events for this month:
Get information on upcoming events and BC Black history while enjoying live music and food from Elk and The Tide. Feb. 1 at 6:30pm.
Learn about Black history in BC, explore the displays, enjoy the live music, and meet with direct descendants of important historical figures. Feb. 10 at 10am.
Hear stories and poems from Addena Sumter-Freitag and enjoy the musical stylings of Victoria jazz favourite, Maureen Washington at the Belfry Theatre. Feb. 19 at 7pm.
More than 50 Black pioneers and their descendents are buried at the cemetery. Join this walking tour to learn some of their stories and the history of Black people in Victoria. Feb. 25 at 2pm.
Issamba Centre Events:
Throughout the month the centre will offer engaging activities and workshops to honour Black History Month. All events will take place at the Edelweiss Club, with additional focus groups for those interested.
This symposium will reflect on the last 10 years of the UN’s IDPAD, followed by a dinner dance. Saturday, Feb. 3 at 10am.
Enjoy a night of celebration, music, and dance with tunes from Mr. Fantastik and Poncho. Saturday, Feb. 3 at 7pm.
A first-of-its-kind expo for the Island to empower local Black business owners, boost community connection, and create support. Feb. 17-18 at 10am.