In our third chapter of Black History Month we are taking a look at the social enterprise, ‘The Black Curriculum’ (TBC), who are delivering black history programmes across the UK.
While we celebrate their crowdfunding achievements in our own promotions of Black History Month, it is very much their ambition to expand this subject outside of October. They believe that black history needs to be incorporated into the national curriculum, to recognise a history that “started hundreds of years before Windrush and pre-dates European colonial enslavement”.
It is history that helps us to understand just how global and interconnected we are on this planet. To understand our origins and the story behind the movement of people, we can better reflect the diverse society we live in today, while including everyone on this same journey. Without a history which represents the breadth of our society, we risk isolating people from what should be a shared experience.
TBC cites a 2007 report from the Home Affairs Committee on the over-representation of young Black people in the criminal justice system. The report identifies a link between the shortcomings in a curriculum which is not representative of our black citizens and the negative cyclical impact on an already repressed demographic. To change the narrative of deprivation and untapped potential, positive role models that young people can aspire to need to be seen outside of the black stereotypes offered by the media.
A proposed remedy suggested that the ‘government should ensure history lessons are relevant to all young people in Britain’ and that was in 2007!
Racism will continue to exist in communities where a void is left untended between the understanding of different cultural experiences and histories. Education has long been cited as a tool with which to develop a cohesive social experience, “the Macpherson Report produced 20 years ago for the inquiry into the Stephen Lawrence murder, showed that cultural diversity within the curriculum is one of the ways to prevent racism”.
TBC offers a wide range of services, they are in schools with both teachers and students but also in the workplace with companies too. They use a range of creative activities to engage people; both art, music and food add colour to the pages of history books and it’s these tools which bring cultural identity to life.
TBC have raised over £17,000 from 623 people to expand an initiative which teaches black history all year round the school year.
If you’ve got a project focused on the support of Black History Month, we’d love for you to join us, start crowdfunding today!