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Our Story

Black Lives Matter SPI is dedicated to a few central causes which we believe are crucial in helping us achieve our goals. As an ever growing movement, we divide our time and efforts so that we can truly invest in each area of nurturing, protecting and empowering our community. Here are  just a few of our achievements toward our mission over the years in no particular order.

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01

Launch Rally

Black Lives Matter SPI was born in 2016 after the consecutive murder of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile at the hands of police. We planned a rally in order to provide an outlet for our community to release our collective pain. The response was so great that our chapter was born in order to provide another sustaining tool in the fight for justice.

02

Student Connections/ Scholarship Give-A-Way

Pouring into our youth is always a priority. We take every opportunity we can to speak to students whether it be through in person classroom visits, connecting with after school clubs to talk about activism and how to get involved or providing funding to assist with their higher education goals. We know future generations will do and accomplish more and we will always support that!

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03

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Healing Ambassador Grant Program

With a grant through Governor Pritzker's office, BLM-SPI was able to partner with other community groups to create and launch a Healing Ambassador Training Program. The program provided individuals with training and tools to equip them to create environments for courageous conversations around sensitive topics in order to promote repair and healing.

04

Community Awareness

Our goal is always to nurture and protect our community. That mission drove us to become COVID Ambassadors through the Department of Public Health in order to have up to date information for our community. In line with that, we also hosted, participated in or spread the word on information sessions and events to empower our community with knowledge to make the best decisions for themselves and their families as well as remained in contact with our state and local elected officials. Pictured here (top) is a COVID panel we hosted with Dr. Ezike, the Director of the IL Department of Public Health, Dr. El-Amin of SIU School of Medicine, Pastor Doss of Abundant Faith, Tiffani Saunders a then, UIS African Studies Professor and communications guru Rikeesha Phelon as our moderator to discuss the effects of COVID on the Black community and our historical trauma inflicted through healthcare. Pictured (bottom) is one of a variety of meetings with elected officials (Governor Pritzker, Former Alerwoman and current Senator Doris Turner, Alderman Shawn Gregory and Former Sate Senator Andy Manar).

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