Quarterly or monthly local chapter meetings / recruitment outings; MOBB United connections; MOBB United Business Directory; special interest groups (e.g., special needs); driven by Chapter Development and Health and Wellness committees with support from Education and Engagement and Eco Dev committees for the directories; quarterly or monthly local chapter meetings/recruitment outings.
For the second year, Moms of Black Boys United, Inc. was out and about with our sons on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service and Remembrance, January 15th. The goal was to give back to those in need while honoring Dr. King’s legacy, and changing negative perceptions of our Black boys and men. Please enjoy these pictures of MOBB United moms and their sons doing what matters.
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.~
Lisa Spriggs: “Monday January 15, 2018 is the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Holiday, which for some means a "Day Off" from school or work but for many others it is a "DAY ON" for service. We are here to change the perception of our young boys and men and want the world to see them doing great things! What do you have planned for the weekend and/or Monday? Share your plans and see if other MOBBs in the area will join you! Tag a friend!” Points of Light
Peggy Bruns: “In keeping with the vision of Martin Luther King Jr. we served at the City of Arlington Mission, where we unloaded, unboxed, sorted, reboxed and reloaded a truck of toys for their Christmas Store. Thanks for coming out Rhonda Tharpe, Kim Stockman, and Tiffanie Tinsley! ‘Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others?’ ‘Everybody can be great as anybody can serve!’ MLK Jr.” (Dallas/Fort Worth MLK Day of Service)
Kimberley Alexander: “Today I visited the Lorraine Motel. Now a museum, it is the place where Martin Luther King Jr. was murdered. I was there for 4+ hours reading, touching, talking and witnessing the evolution of the Black struggle. If there were one sentence I could use to summarize my thoughts: FIND YOUR PURPOSE! Each of us owes it for every sacrifice, for every martyr, for every scar, for every right we have obtained on the backs of those who set aside fear and stood tall when death was almost certain. In 2018, we owe it to our SUNS! Join us on the frontline...www.mobbunited.org. Remember the dream!”
morning after Alton Sterling was killed, I went to wake my son for
work and found him sitting up in bed. His first words to me was "Mom did
you see how they just killed that man" I was too stunned to respond.
The very next morning we found out that Philando Castile was killed. No
words needed to be said. The words were on my son's face. He was scared,
and so was I. But as his mother, my only thought was that I MUST
PROTECT HIM. As I type this, with tears streaming down my face at the
memory, my determination is just as strong. I cannot sleep soundly until
I know that my son, Crys’ son, Vivian's son, Tasha's son, Depelsha's
sons, ALL OF OUR SONS are safe from the ones sworn to protect them.”
Where does she get the energy?! Vanessa McCullers has been going all out for MOBB United since July 2016, and she seems to be as fully charged as the Energizer Bunny. We know her passion is fueled by her love for her SONshine, Carlos. If you’re wondering what Vanessa does for MOBB United, the answer is well...everything!!!
Vanessa initially began as Co-Chair of the Communications Committee and shortly thereafter, became Chair. She now oversees all of Moms of Black Boys United’s (the 501c3 organization) activities, including Communications, Education and Engagement, Self Care, and the MOBB United Connections Program.
This means she manages a team of leaders and volunteers who handle everything from branding, marketing and PR, content development across platforms, social media strategy and execution, media outreach and op-eds, research studies, education and wellness programs, partnerships, and events.
Vanessa was instrumental in planning the first MOBB United Leadership Retreat in Bethany, PA, and in establishing our presence at the world renowned Essence Festival in New Orleans last year. She’s also brokered significant partnerships, including a partnership with Dr. Luke Wood of San Diego State University, on the “Black Minds Matter” virtual course. In addition, she has personally provided ongoing resources and support to moms who have lost sons to police violence.
Vanessa has a heart of gold and a battery that never seems to run out. Her mind and heart are constantly churning out new ideas of ways to build and grow the organization’s presence and impact. We honestly don’t know what we’d do without her, and we are so grateful for all of her contributions. Thanks, Vanessa!!!
“Being a volunteer with MOBB United has literally been a Godsend! My prayer has been to connect with other women who are of like-minded faith. Finding other women who are mothers (particularly of Black boys) has been an added bonus to my prayers. When I realized that this was more than just a Facebook page, I felt like I needed to do MORE. Just enjoying the lovely pics of our boys was not enough. When I offered to volunteer, I had no idea what I was signing up for! I was asked if I would volunteer specifically with the newsletter and with hesitation I raised my hand slowly—again, not really sure of the commitment. I am here to tell you that this was one of the best decisions I've made in a long time! As a person who loves to write, this was the absolute best use of my skill and talent as a volunteer. The women I've been able to connect with as a volunteer have not only blessed me with their stories of triumph, but also with their friendship. I'm doing more than just writing stories; I am bonding with unsung (mommy) heroes and giving them a voice! This experience has been more than fulfilling and life-changing, to say the least. It has been a sheer joy to help out in this way. The one thing I love about volunteering is that none of it is mandatory. If I'm unable to commit, I can communicate that, and there's no feeling of pressure or obligation. I can volunteer at my own comfortable pace. The more volunteers, the merrier, because there is SO much work to be done in this fight for social change. When more volunteers come forward, it will mean that the work can be shared among the masses instead of being carried by a small handful of faithful few. I strongly encourage anyone and everyone to consider volunteering because not only do we NEED the gifts and talent that only YOU can offer, but volunteering might just change your life!”
This lady right here! Natasha Marie has hit the ground running with MOBB United for Social Change, Inc. (MUSC) and Moms of Black Boys United, Inc. She volunteered to write for the newsletter and has so far turned out some excellent pieces: “Young, Black and Incarcerated” and “Hopes and Dreams while Serving Time”, both of which give a powerful voice to moms of incarcerated sons. Check out her latest piece, "Black Sons in Military Service," in this edition of the newsletter. While connecting with moms who normally may be silent about their emotions on sensitive subjects concerning their sons, Natasha has a sincere way of drawing out the best stories—with love.
Of course, this is her volunteer work. Like most of us, not only does working a full-time job and raising her son keep her extra busy, but she's also an entrepreneur and published author. She recently collaborated and published a book titled "First Lady Redefined.”
“I MOBB because Black boys and men walk a tightrope between their educations, their futures, their families and the systemic racism that leads to their being profiled and incarcerated. I MOBB because as mothers of Black sons, we walk that tightrope with them in our hearts every day. We can’t be idle. We have to try and change the world.”
Passionate, vocal, caring, self-aware, protective, willing, proactive...these are just the first few characteristics that come to mind when CK’s name is mentioned. She has made many contributions to MOBB United since joining in July of 2016. She says that she spent some time exploring the different committees, including Policy, Health and Wellness, and Education and Engagement before settling down in Communications and working on our Newsletter, where she contributes ideas for content and writes and edits articles.
You’ll find CK busy at any given time in several areas of MOBB United for Social Change’s (MUSC) mission to protect our sons. Here are just a few ways CK has made a difference at the grassroots level:
Dedicating her time to calling officials on important issues from our virtual call center.
Helping to found the Moms of Black Boys United Book Club, along with Kumari Ghafoor and Uchechi Eke.
Gathering photos for inclusion in image campaigns to change perception about our sons.
Contributing to the Policy Committee as a liaison to New York City.
Posting in the MOBB United Facebook group her timely, thoughtful opinions on current events that impact our Black boys and men.
Attending local rallies for our sons, representing MOBB United in her Woke Mom T-shirt!
Remember that ONE thing is a big thing. If you volunteer to do just one thing that you have time and energy to do, it is SOMEthing that will make a world of difference in the lives of our sons. Please volunteer today.We are seeking help in many areas, including copy editing, research, graphic design, etc. We have an urgent need for Chapter leaders for cities and towns all across the country. If you're ready to start a local chapter, applications will be available October 10. Visit www.mobbunited.org/page/ChapterDevelopment for details.
Also, Moms of Black Boys United appreciates donations. To date, our organization has been completely self-funded; but to grow and expand, we need your help. Please consider donating to Moms of Black Boys United this month at mobbunited.org/donate.
“Volunteering with MOBB United and MUSC is an honor. It gives me the opportunity to affect change for Black Boys and men with a group of women who know firsthand how I feel. It's not always easy, but I make time to serve, not only for my son, but for all of our sons. I want them to grow up in a world free of institutional racism that has them as its primary target. I want them to reach their fullest potential and be valued in society and afforded their constitutional rights like any mom. Until then, I will remain on the front lines putting my heels to the ground to fight for and protect them.”
Since joining the MOBB United for Social Change (MUSC) Policy and Advocacy Committee in January, Frankie Robertson has hit the ground running, and MUSC has benefited tremendously as a result. In addition to serving as lead for the Baton Rouge chapter, she has been a key contributor and leader of our policy and advocacy work. MUSC is so fortunate to have her energy, talent and commitment at work for us.
On Saturday, August 5th, she organized MUSC’s participation in a state lobby day in support of criminal justice reform initiatives, and she also has established a strong presence amongst peer organizations and elected officials for MUSC on the ground in Louisiana.
During our anniversary month, Frankie organized not one, but two meetups in the Baton Rouge area. She also invited and then facilitated Baton Rouge Mayor Broome’s participation in a recent national call. This Summer, she has organized MUSC’s Congressional outreach, ensuring that a number of members organized meetings with Congressional representatives to share our mission and policy agenda.
Moving forward, Frankie will use that passion and drive to take on a greater leadership role in our Policy and Advocacy Committee, specifically overseeing our advocacy initiatives.
Remember that ONE thing is a big thing. If you volunteer to do just one thing that you have time and energy to do, it is something that will make a world of difference in the lives of our sons.
Volunteerism is rewarding, but the time, effort, energy, and passion we pour into it is immeasurable. We all know already that moms are absolutely the busiest people in the world. Raising our children qualifies us for that title. And yet we go so far beyond that calling, many by volunteering with this organization. MOBB United appreciates the hard work of all of our volunteers.
MOBB United Selects are nominated by their MOBB United peers. Strong women lift each other up, right? These ladies have been recognized this year for contributing so much to this organization: Vivian Nwankpah (February), Beth Lunde (March), Alycia Michelle Grace (May), and Tee Wilson (June). Help us honor these women by joining the fight to protect our sons. We need you on the front lines too. Our sons’ lives are worth it.
MOBBUnited is more than 176,000 moms strong and growing, but we are made exponentially stronger by virtue of our partnerships with others. While ours is a singular focus on the well-being of our Black suns, there are many other groups whose goals overlap with and complement our own.
One such organization is Points of Light (POL), “the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service”. POL worked with us, as MOBB Malikah Berry, the Senior Vice President of Programs for Points of Light, helped MOBBUnited moms across the country gather with their sons to volunteer on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, 2017. POL helped to connect us with opportunities to bond with our boys around service, while providing them with the sense of empowerment that comes from doing for others. Together, we volunteered to beautify communities, distribute water and food, make hats and blankets for children affected by cancer, and lots more.
Please enjoy these pictures of MOBBUnited moms and their suns and join us in changing the false perception of our Black boys and men from those who drain their communities of resources to those who enrich and improve them.
Moms of Black Boys United - Ensuring that our SUNs Survive and Thrive
M.O.B.B. United aims to provide information and support for moms of Black sons while promoting positive images of Black boys and men. Our goal is to influence policy impacting how Black boys and men are treated by law enforcement and society.