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Organization to Celebrate Black History Month In Monrovia

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.
Written by Ryann Blackshere

For the upcoming black history month, one local organization is encouraging residences to learn more about the experiences of African Americans and the history of civil rights in America.

The Monrovia Duarte Black Alumni Association (MDBAA) is hosting the "Civil Rights Movement in America" luncheon Feb. 23 at the Monrovia Community Center to celebrate policy advancements that have made the country more equal.

The luncheon will start at 3pm and be followed by a formal program.

"The focus of the program is going to look at the civil rights movement influenced an international culture," said Ruhiyyih Yuille, MDBAA Program Coordinator.

Partnering with Monrovia Unified School District and Duarte Unified School District, the MDBAA will be assembling a middle school choir to perform at the luncheon. 

This isn't the only event MDBAA has planned for February. MDBAA is also collaborating with the school districts on a reading and arts project called "Through the Eyes of the MOvement." Students in Middle and High School will be asked to create an artistic piece based on at least one of the following prompts: “What is the significance of the Civil Rights Movement in your life?” “What can be done to advance the concepts of equality and justice for all?” 

All month the group has planned activities including a teen poetry slam, an arts celebration, and a park beautification project. Monrovia teacher Patrick Garcia has created curriculum to help students design art projects inspired by civil rights.

The month will also be kicked off with a screening of the award-winning movie "The Butler," starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey.

MDBAA hopes the community will become more enriched by each of the programs.

"It's important because our history books are not able to over the vast history that is out there for America. It becomes the responsible for the community to assist in sharing the rich history of the African American culture and to provide the chapters of American history and our rich heritage,” Said Joannie Yuille, MDBAA Member. “It’s for all people to participate."

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