February is the month for love, for Black history, and for teen dating violence awareness. What if we brought all those elements together to take action for teens and Black lives? What if we really listened to young people and followed their lead?
We envision a world where all people can live and love freely without fear, and uplifting the voices and needs of young people must be part of that work. February is Teen Dating Violence ACTION Month (TDVAM) and Black History Month. Let’s honor the legacies of Black women, support the leadership of Black-led organizations dedicated to ending violence and creating justice, and build a more loving and equitable world.
Throughout February, we’ll highlight youth activists and Black change makers who are showing the kind of fierce love for communities that it takes to end teen dating violence and oppression.
Let’s follow their lead! #TDVAM #BlackHistoryMonth
Teens thrive when. Teens thrive when they are listened to, when they are free to be who they are, when they know where to turn for help, and when they know that their lives matter. Teen dating violence is a big deal, but everyone can play a role in creating healthy, loving relationships. Take action for healthy relationships by supporting friends and family, supporting young people in your life, aspiring to love like this, and asking how’s your relationship?
Show all kinds of love. Let’s celebrate all kinds of love this month! Love for our sweeties, our besties, our aunties, our communities, the land, and of course, ourselves! Get in the mood and celebrate Black love with this playlist and send your friend or boo a valentine with our readymade valentines. Lift up the fierce love of these young activists by giving them a follow or donation and read about west-coast climate justice activism. Take ten minutes out of your day (right now if you can!) to rest and restore with community healing practitioner Rebeka Ndosi’s powerful Heart Breath Meditation.
Be about it. Let’s uplift and amplify the voices of youth activists at loveisrespect.org. Their theme for TDVAM 2023 is Be About It, a continuation of last year’s theme Talk About It. Every young person has a valuable story and important contributions to make to the world. Be About It is a call to join together to unapologetically be about education, engagement, and empowerment. As love is respect Director Angela Lee said, “Out with the societal norms within relationships. No labels. Your life is your choice, and you deserve a healthy relationship, free from violence.” Check out the TDVAM Action Guide and tune into an event this month. Want to join together with other young people to take action? Check out Advocates For Youth’s Youth Activist Toolkit!
Love our histories, take action for our futures. Let’s remember our history, celebrate our present, and take action for our future. Check out and share Movement for Black Lives’ Afrofuturist film that envisions a world where all Black people will be free and learn more about Black Futures Month. Look to Mutual Aid Books for inspiration on how to read with purpose and follow them on Instagram to see their youth activism take shape!
Let’s learn, honor, and celebrate the Black history makers who have led this work in the past and present: Sojourner Truth, Harriet Ann Jacobs, Ida B. Wells, Mary McLeod Bethune, Recy Taylor, Rosa Parks, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Anita Hill, Loretta Ross, Mariame Kaba, Beth Richie, Andrea Ritchie, Alisa Bierria, Aishah Shahidah Simmons, Donna Hylton, Karma Cottman, Tarana Burke, Wagatwe Wanjuki, and many more. And let’s keep uplifting the young leaders who carry our world forward!