AAIMM Village Fund grantee, Parenting for Liberation (P4L) is an organization that supports Black parents in their efforts to heal from historical and ongoing trauma while interrupting intergenerational violence. Its broad definition of “parent” enables it to have a larger scope of influence in building resilient and joyful Black families within the community it serves. Launched in 2016 as a virtual platform to connect, inspire, and uplift Black parents as they navigate and negotiate raising Black children within the social and political context of the United States, P4L has grown into an anti-violence movement for Black parents. To date, P4L has reached more than 20,000 people through audio podcasts and engaged nearly 30,000 individuals through social media, a self-published storybook workbook, blog posts, and opinion pieces, and recently released its inaugural book written by founder and executive director, Trina Greene Brown: Parenting for Liberation: A Guide for Raising Black Children (Feminist Press, 2020).
Parenting for Liberation recognizes that no matter how vigilantly Black parents try to protect their children, it might not feel like enough, particularly in this current climate of an ongoing pandemic and social unrest due to heightened awareness of systemic racism. They stated, “repeated exposure to trauma leads to parenting from fear—a trauma response that relies on strategies that exert dominance over children....More than ever, it is critical (that) Black caregivers understand the impact of trauma on their parenting and equip them with tools for embodied self-regulation.”
This Black-led organization also has an active Advisory Committee comprised of Black and Afro-Latinx parents that centers the experiences, voices, and leadership of Black parents and families. Additionally, Parenting for Liberation provides access to healing practices drawn from diverse spiritual modalities rooted in traditions from the African Diaspora that strengthen Black caregivers’ psychosocial resilience so that they can maintain well-being despite heightened stress exposure as a result of parenting during the COVID-19 pandemic. P4L engages Black caregivers to unlearn their old ways of parenting and shift to alternatives for "liberated parenting" that support their children to be their freest selves and meet adversity in healthy ways.
Parenting for Liberation and The Village Fund
The organization will work in partnership with The Children’s Collective, Inc., the Black Infant Health Program, Thomas Riley High School, and The Well to serve Black women and girls in the South Los Angeles area who are pregnant and parenting children ages 0-5 under The Village Fund project. There are four key components of the project:
- “Raising Liberated Children” is a three-part quarterly workshop that P4L plans to conduct from curriculum based on the liberated parenting strategies in Parenting for Liberation: A Guide for Raising Black Children.
- Along with the workshops, P4L will coordinate one-on-one healing sessions (including Reiki, liberation coaching, couples coaching, grief support, and parent coaching) for up to 30 Black parents.
- P4L will host monthly “Community Care Circles,” bringing together 20 Black parents per month with Black healing practitioners to provide collective community care.
- P4L will provide COVID-19 self-care packages to up to 50 parents including healing treatments such as essential oils, herbal teas, crystals, affirmation cards, etc.
Each practitioner in the project is a Black caregiver committed to the wellness of Black families. From P4L’s existing data, 100% of its parents who received services agreed that being able to work with specialists from a shared collective history made a valuable difference. One participant said, “I was able to connect with my healer on a deeper level because of our shared racial identity.” Resources will also be used to compensate Black healing practitioners at their full rates and pay staff salary.
Recently, P4L celebrated and honored Black mamas at an in-person, COVID-safe Black Mama Magic event. The event was attended by 75 Black mamas who were showered with gifts, music, photos, and community resources. The goal was to provide positive energy, support, healing, and rest for mothers after a difficult year of isolation and loss. Volunteers and partners for the event included: Positive Results Center, Crystal Stairs, Head Start, and First 5 LA.
Watch the Black Mama Magic event recap!
Email: [email protected]