By Nikia Owens, Ph.D.

As Black History Month draws to a close, let us not forget that the essence of Sistahood reminds us Black history is not confined to February alone; it is a vibrant, living history that enriches every day.  “Sistahood” embodies a profound bond that transcends mere friendship; it is a lifeline for Black women, a source of strength, support, and empowerment amidst a world that often marginalizes and overlooks them. This concept is deeply rooted in Black history, where collective resilience and mutual aid have been essential for survival and resistance against systemic oppression. The power of Black sistahood lies in its ability to foster community, uplift one another, and create spaces of belonging and healing. It is a testament to the enduring spirit of Black women, who, through centuries of adversity, have leaned on each other for emotional, spiritual, and practical support.

Historically, Black sistahood has been a cornerstone of the civil rights movement and other struggles for justice and equality. Women like Rosa Parks, Ella Baker, and Fannie Lou Hamer did not stand alone; they stood as part of a mighty sisterhood that fueled their courage and commitment to change. Their legacy teaches us that when Black women come together, their collective power can challenge the status quo and pave the way for future generations. This historical parallel highlights why sistahood is not only important but essential, especially today, as Black women continue to face systemic barriers in society.

In the words of Maya Angelou, a figure whose life and work embody the essence of Black sistahood, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” This quote encapsulates the essence of sistahood; it is about the feeling of being seen, understood, and valued by fellow sistas. It is about the warmth of being embraced by a community that feeds your spirit in a fulfilling and positive way. I am deeply grateful for the sistahood that has been a source of joy, inspiration, and resilience in my life. To have sistas who nourish my spirit and stand with me through life’s highs and lows is a blessing and a privilege that I do not take for granted.

Sistahood, is more than a concept; it is a practice of mutual upliftment and solidarity that is vital for the well-being, success, and empowerment of Black women. It underscores the importance of community and connection in overcoming obstacles and achieving collective and individual aspirations. As we move forward, let us cherish and strengthen the bonds of sistahood, recognizing its power to heal, inspire, and transform lives. In doing so, I honor the legacy of those who came before me and light the way for those who will follow, ensuring that the spirit of sistahood continues to thrive for generations to come.

Grateful for Sistahood with Markita Morris-Luis, Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend, Uva Coles



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