As early as the 1940s, communities transformed Carter G. Woodson’s Negro History Week into Negro History Month. Today, Black History Month is a time to honor the contributions and legacy of African Americans across U.S. history and society.
The King Arts Complex, located in Columbus, Ohio, serves as a major anchor for development working to preserve, produce, and present the cultural expressions of African Americans. Opening in March 1987, KAC is an oasis for cultural and educational activities, connecting the community through the arts.
This month we will be donating $1 for every bottle sold of our Hand + Body Lotion with Bergamot Water to KAC. Our Hand + Body Lotion is made with repurposed Bergamot Water from the juicing industry. Used globally in perfumes and aromatherapy for its ability to boost your mood and alleviate stress, Bergamot water also has antibacterial properties that prevent congested pores and breakouts, whilst balancing sebum production. The Hand + Body Lotion is formulated with Lemongrass Oil to soothe dry skin whilst also being antimicrobial, antibacterial and antifungal. Blended with Grapefruit Oil and Cocoa Butter, it is an antioxidant that deeply moisturises and nourishes the skin.
Partnering with KAC has been a great time for the UpCircle team to further educate ourselves on Black History. We interviewed Jevon Collins, the Performing Arts Director for the King Arts Complex, to delve deeper into the amazing work that is being done there.
How can communities get involved with KAC?
“The four ways you can support the King Arts Complex are by making a donation, becoming a volunteer, attending an event, or becoming a member of the King Arts Complex, where dreams come alive.”
By going to kingartscomplex.com you can stay up to date with their great programs as they enter their 35th anniversary.
How do donations help further KAC’s mission?
“Donations support all of our programmings here at the King Arts Complex, whether it’s our Youth Education events, our Cultural Arts events, in which we’re in the Elijah Pierce Gallery for Natalie Orr’s “Aurora” exhibition, or our Performing Arts events which include so many great performances around the year, especially our Heritage Music Festival in Mayme Moore Park… we look forward to that event every summer.”
What are 3 things we can all do this Black History Month?
“Three things we can all do to celebrate Black History Month are to get our education… to go to our libraries and get the information to learn more about black history, not only in your communities but all over the United States of America. Also, we know Black History Month is only in February, but African Americans have created history in this country every day of the year since 1619. And also, support local black-owned businesses and organizations. They need your support, not only in February but throughout the year.”
What resources can we use to find out more about black history?
“As I mentioned, a great resource is your local library. Here in Columbus, we’ve worked with the Columbus Metropolitan Library on a special digitization project in which archived photos from the 1950s to the 1980s are available digitally from their site which you will be able to view if you log onto kingartscomplex.com.”
In the words of former President Gerald Ford, February is a time to, “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavour throughout our history.”