Real Stories Roundup #1

A collection of all the interesting things we've read, heard, or watched so far this year!


Before we dive into our roundup of links we think you’ll enjoy, we’d like to take a quick second to welcome you to our newest endeavor, Real Stories. Our goal is to create a tighter sense of community among our Step Up: Equity Matters followers and this new format will allow us to connect in a fun and easy way. If you have anything you’d like to comment or share with the folks that run this joint and our visitors, please hit the speech bubble icon ( 💬) you’ll see sprinkled about or hit the heart (🤍) to show love. We appreciate all of it!

Real Stories is also more than a newsletter! We’ll be hosting live conversations every 3rd Wednesday of the month with “diversity champions” —people like you that dedicate much of their lives to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace and world. To catch the live events, register and follow us on Crowdcast. Or, subscribe to our YouTube channel to (re)watch the recordings afterward any time you like. And for the folks that prefer a good podcast, we’ve got you! Real Stories is also available on many of your favorite podcasting services; take a look here.

We could not be more excited for what lies ahead with Real Stories! Our next live event is Feb 17th @ 12 noon, so mark your calendars and RSVP here. In the meantime, check out January’s interview with the filmmaker, Alex Miranda Cruz!

Black History Month

"Don't get too precious, don't get too fearful, stay steady." - Toni Morrison

While Black History Month may only be 28 days, what started as a week-long celebration by the great writer and historian Carter G. Woodson, will hopefully expand to full recognition that Black history is American history and must be honored all year long. With that in mind, we share with you some of our favorite resources, works, and upcoming events that help educate, inspire, and uplift everyone—today, tomorrow, and always.

Your Black Friends Are Busy

The 'Your Black Friends Are Busy' app is a web-based resource for learning about anti-racism and supporting the people and organizations doing important work for the Black Lives Matter movement. Users can access it on their desktop, Android, or iOS devices.

Black Oxygen by Angela Russell

Angela Russell is a Black woman who loves Wisconsin. But sometimes, with so few Black people in the state, she needs a little extra dose of Black Oxygen. A place where she can breathe, connect and restore by hearing and listening to Black folks in this shared journey of life.

Wear Red Day

The Foundation for Black Women’s Wellness will host the 10th Annual Wear Red Day this February 20th. This virtual event promotes heart disease prevention and awareness with a powerful panel discussion by Dr. Sandy Charles, Board Certified Cardiologist and Medical Director of the Novant Health Women's Heart & Vascular Center; heart attack survivor, Rev. Veloris Brooks, Pastor of Spirit & Truth Ministries, Milwaukee; and live fitness with Coach Venus Washington of Venus Inspires Health & Wellness. There will be several prize giveaways, including Best Dressed, Most Engaged Attendee, and several more! RSVP here, and don’t forget to wear your best red attire!

Trace the Line Conversations

Join Bravebird's Alejandro Miranda Cruz for a virtual conversation with leaders from three Midwestern cities significantly impacted by appalling violence against Black Americans in their communities. The discussion will focus on topics that inform viewers how to grapple with the nationwide struggle to overcome and move forward. The conversation will also highlight footage from the upcoming film, Trace the Line, as it addresses the critical human and societal issues we are all facing. RSVP here for the live event on Crowdcast.

Please also support the film and its creators by donating to their campaign sponsored by Film Independent.

On the Pulse of Morning

By now, you have hopefully watched or read the talented Amanda Gorman’s inauguration poem, “The Hill We Climb.” On the day she recited this historical work, she also wore a ring with a caged bird in honor of the late great Maya Angelou, who also delivered her own inauguration poem 28 years earlier. Here we take a look back at that day and watch Ms. Angelou perform “On the Pulse of Morning.”

That’s all for this roundup, but we’ll be back soon with more! See you soon!