Black Covid Care is about Black health, and these stories focus on initiatives to vaccinate, test, and treat Black people in ways that center dignity and humanity.
Eating disorders within Black communities have historically been exacerbated by systematic poverty and food insecurity, lack of access to healthcare, and stigma from within and outside of the community. However, there has been an increased push to talk about eating disorders within Black communities, as well as the intersection between race and mental health, by black doctors, therapists, and others in the health community. Events such as Whitney Trotter and Alishia McCullough's “Ancestral Legacies & Eating Disorders in Black Communities” discussion engage the impact eating disorders have on Black people and discuss how to overcome ancestral trauma to embrace healing.
In the early 20th century Andrew Powell lived in North Carolina with his wife Melissa and their children. Due to his position as being a Black landowner, a dispute with some white neighbors escalated to the point where a group of white men were prepared to beat and lynch Powell. His son, Raymond Powell, stepped in, feigned his father's insanity, and had him institutionalized at an asylum to save his life. This is an act of care, a protest, a subversion of a system predicated on Black death.
Chidiebere Ibe is a medical illustrator from Nigeria that is best known for his drawing of a Black fetus. Ibe is passionate about diversifying medical illustration to improve health outcomes for Black people. As a self taught artist, Ibe learned to make medical drawings from studying textbooks. His work is now sought after across the world, as he continues to advocate for diversity, education, and a more realistic reflection of the world around us. Ibe's work is an act of care, as the lack of diversity in medical illustration can lead to misdiagnoses for various medical conditions on darker skin.
High on the Hog is a 2021 limited Netflix docuseries tracing the origins of African-American cuisine. It illuminates the resilience and ingenuity of Black cooks who have shaped American cuisine since the arrival of the first slave ships. The four-episode show is made by an intentionally Black creative team, which itself is a rarity in television.
Oldways, a food, and nutrition nonprofit created the African Heritage Diet Pyramid using knowledge of the cuisine, health, and history of the African diaspora. The pyramid highlights specific foods that form the basis of traditional African diets and is oriented towards a diasporic audience by celebrating the foods and healthy eating patterns of Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas.
Choose Healthy Life is an organization of Black churches working together to combat health disparities faced by the black community. Church clergy and leaders work with local healthcare organizations to address the community directly and tackle tangible health goals that decrease morbidity and mortality. Church leaders also use the trust and standing that they have with their communities to raise awareness on relevant health issues and reach out to the community to provide support and health resources.
DC activist group Long Live GoGo organized a protest outside of United Medical Center in Ward 8 to advocate for current issues in DC. The protest attracted a large number of people and featured go-go bands playing music in between speeches calling for community support in local government. The protest organizers used the breaks in between performances to promote United Medical Center and advocate against budget cuts to the hospital, help Banneker Academic High School and push against budget cuts to public schools in wards 7 and 8, and advocate for the inclusion of go-go music and culture in the school curriculum and societal acceptance in Washington DC.
“This is a Low” is a play written by Cris Eli Blak that follows a young black man, Jude, as he warms up to a mental health counselor in the psychiatric unit he is being held in while he deals with suicidal ideation. The play utilizes Blak’s own experiences with mental health and he hopes that it will encourage other young people to seek help if needed. Blak also wants to communicate that dealing with mental health is not a linear journey and to be honest when communicating how it feels to navigate life each day.
Celeste Henry introduces the history of black healthcare in Galveston, Texas at the conception of the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), the state’s first medical school which also had the first department focusing on black health which had the ability to treat a large number of people. Racialized social determinants of health have made the black population disproportionately affected by health issues and historically there has been very little if no, health access (in terms of both treatment and practice) for black people before widespread integration. However, doctors from historically black universities had opened their own practices to treat black patients, not only physiologically but also taking into account the emotional and psychological aspects of healthcare. Practitioners such as Dr. Edith Jones (the first black graduate of the University of Arkansas Medical School) approached medical care for the black community as a layered system, in which cultivating black health and well-being also cultivated society at large.
A.P.I.D.T.A is a song written by Jay Electronica featuring Jay Z which reflects on grief and mourning after the death of a loved one. Jay Electronica wrote the song after the death of his mother in late 2019. The title is an acronym for “All Praise is Due to Allah”, an expression of gratitude that is commonly used by Muslims. The beat is slow and melancholic and the chorus lyrics are slightly off-beat, creating a disjointed effect. The act of reflection is emphasized by the fragmentation and repeating of some lyrics such as “I got numbers in my phone that’ll never ring again’” though despite the obvious sadness of many of the lyrics there is a tinge of acceptance that runs throughout the verses; “The flesh we roam this earth in is a blessing, not a promise/ I bow with those who bow to the creator and pay homage.”