This Week on American Black Journal:

Two-day tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to share the arts’ impact on civil rights

Wayne State University’s annual tribute to the life and legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. returns this year with a two-day event showcasing the impact of Detroit’s arts, culture and music on the civil rights movement. Day one features “The Motor City and the Movement” panel, which will explore how Detroit music, art, religion and politics during the 1960s helped shape the civil rights movement. The panel will also discuss contemporary issues like voting rights and the role of activism in culture today. 

On day two, “Arts, Culture and Music of the Movement” takes center stage with an evening of presentations, music and dance showcasing the impact of the arts during the civil rights era. The event will also include the presentation of the Dr. Arthur L. Johnson Community Leadership Awards, honoring individuals and organizations exemplifying a commitment to community and positive change in Detroit and beyond. Santita Jackson, a political activist, radio and TV host, vocalist and the daughter of civil rights leader Rev. Jesse Jackson, will be the event’s special guest. 

Guest host Trudy Gallant-Stokes talks with Wayne State’s Director of Community Affairs Stacie Clayton about the theme for this year’s tribute and the importance of the holiday. Plus, Santita Jackson reflects on her memories of Dr. King from childhood, her father’s influence in her life, and her family’s connection to Detroit. 

United Way for Southeastern Michigan awards latest round of Racial Equity Fund grants

United Way for Southeastern Michigan has announced the latest round of Racial Equity Fund recipients. The fund, established in 2021, aims to empower BIPOC-led organizations in Southeast Michigan by providing unrestricted grants ranging from $10,000 to $50,000.  

The initiative has given a total of $3 million to nonprofit organizations since its inception to eliminate racial disparities in the region. United Way for Southeastern Michigan‘s mission is to mobilize the caring power of Detroit and Southeastern Michigan to improve communities and individual lives in measurable and lasting ways.  

United Way for Southeastern Michigan President & CEO Dr. Darienne Hudson sat down with guest host Trudy Gallant-Stokes to share details about the latest round of grant recipients, as well as highlight the fund’s creation, purpose and how nonprofits can apply. Plus, she talks about the expansion of the Racial Equity Fund into Washtenaw County this year, offering a broader reach for organizations to apply.

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Watch American Black Journal on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 9:30 a.m. on Detroit Public TV, WTVS-Channel 56.