New York Women's Foundation Celebrates #BlackLivesMatter Activists

BlogHer Original Post

I recently had the pleasure of attending the New York Women's Foundation 28th annual Celebrating Women breakfast in Times Square, New York City. This year's honorees were: Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza, and Opal Tometi, founders of #BlackLivesMatter; Catherine Gund, documentary filmmaker and social justice activist; and Roberta Kaplan, Supreme Court litigator. 

table setting, NY Women's Foundation Breakfast
Image: Feminista Jones

The Foundation is a "cross-cultural alliance of women promoting economic justice for women and families in New York City" and I can't even begin to tell you about all of the great work they do in my hometown. From their website, the Foundation's mission is:

"To improve the lives of women and families by funding organizations that promote the economic security of women; their right to live safely and without violence; and their health, sexual and reproductive rights."

By funding organizations such as Callen-Lorde Community Health Project, Red Umbrella Project, and Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees, the Foundation empowers women to work within their communities to build strong networks and sustainable economic opportunities. The organizations that receive funds go on to help thousands of women in New York, which helps thousands of families.

Event Program, NY Women's Foundation Breakfast
Image: Feminista Jones

If you missed the event, you can see footage here. Some notable attendees this year:

  • Jordan Roth, President of Jujamcyn Theaters
  •  Abigail Disneyfilmmaker and philanthropist
  • Soledad O'Brienjournalist and philanthropist
  • Ryan Hawke, Actress
  • Agnes Gundphilanthropist 
  • ELEMENT, all-female a cappella group (who also performed)

I was happy to see the co-founders of Black Lives Matter honored this year. While they started the organization in 2012, they created a rallying call for the current social justice movement fighting against police brutality, which continues to unite people all across America and the world. I recently traveled to London, Paris, and Johannesburg, and in each city, the people there knew of the Black Lives Matter movement and were using the slogan and ideology in their own work.

Patrisse Cullors, Opal Tometi, and Alicia Garvza
Garza, Tometi, and Cullors accept their award for their work with #BlackLivesMatter
Image: Feminista Jones

It is important to honor women of color, Black women especially, who are working, every day, for the liberation of their people and for the causes in which they believe. Cullors, Garza, and Tometi exemplify the courage, passion, and commitment to social justice that will inevitably change the world. They prove that women don't need paltry hand-outs-- we can word hard and move mountains on our own if you but give us space and access to the resources to do so. 

Feminista Jones and Patrisse Cullors, NY Women's Foundation Breakfast
Me and Black Lives Matter co-founder, Patrisse Cullors

 Here at BlogHer, we pride ourselves in recognizing the diverse strengths and talents of all women. Organizations like the New York Women's Foundation make it easier for women with dreams of making the world a better place to achieve their goals.  If you're interested in supporting them in their endeavor, you can make a donation today.

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