Nominated by the Hon Roosevelt Skerrit, Prime Minister of Dominica, the main issue of contention for the appointing Commonwealth Heads of Governments, was her Catholic faith! That’s saying something for a lawyer and politician!
Wow, I can’t believe we have our 10 year anniversary in 2016. Sounds cliche but I remember launching the blog as if it were yesterday. But 1,827 posts, 15 awards, and 3 international speaking engagements later it truly does add up to 10 years of passion.
Logo created by Andy Collins
We have grown from blog to social network, to private groups, with Twitter list and You Tube channel, and as we’ve branched out to more platforms we continue to grow and learn new things always keeping in mind that the Black Women in Europe Blog was created to celebrate the lives of the ordinary and extraordinary black women living in Europe.
We will celebrate all year with special contributions from sisters across Europe and a brother that supports us.
Black Women in Europe Blog™ 10th Anniversary notes:
One such brother is Andy Collins who created the Black Women in Europe™ Blog logo several years ago and graciously created our anniversary logos. I first met Andy when he called me to ask what I thought about a website he was launching: an urban website in Sweden. I was on Sweden’s west coast, he was on the east, easterly at least up in past Stockholm. We talked, we clicked, I encouraged, he laughed, I laughed, we talked some more and I remember thinking, wow: aren’t British dudes cool? But when I hung up the phone I marveled, with a grateful heart, at the power of the Black Women in Europe™ blog to make connections. It was my vision come true. I not only wanted to “meet” black women in Europe who were doing amazing things, I wanted to meet other people in my community doing amazing things. And that’s what Andy is doing: amazing things! And he’s incredibly talented in graphic design and he’s a visionary too. He’s putting Soul Music on the map in Scandinavia. Or rather Scandinavian Soul Music on the world map.
Thanks for being a brother who supports black women in Europe, Andy! We love you back.
Here’s more about Andy:
Logo by Andy Collins
I moved from London to Sweden in September 2005 with my native girlfriend hoping to lay some foundations for my children, to realise some hopes and dreams for a better life for ourselves too. After the initial disorientation that comes with emigrating I found myself a student again but this time learning about life. Not ordinary life but ‘urban life’, right in here in Sweden. I had to learn how to speak Swedish, read Swedish, shop in Swedish and convince other people that I could be ‘Swedish?’ (Being of Afro- Caribbean descent, that was no mean feat!).
It wasn’t long before I had yearnings for my previous life. There were things I missed from home, my heritage and I began to question ‘would I ever fit in here?’ I feared not least for myself but for children and the same unanswered questions they would face whilst growing up here. It was then that the concept and website ‘urbanlife.se – a website for the afro-swedish community’ was born. I turned to the best blog/website I could find for inspiration, which was Adrianne George’s Black Women In Europe (BWIE). It was literally the only website discussing and highlighting life for black people in Sweden!
Thanks to her advice and guidance the platform was born and I happily worked on creative projects with her. Times have changed for me since then. I now promote soul music in Scandinavia, www.scandinaviansoul.com, which also highlights the multi-cultural background that represent modern Scandinavia.
Meanwhile BWIE is still going strong and I’m simply delighted to help celebrate such a wonderful, positive blog driven by such a delightful and hard working woman.
European Commission’s 1st Dialogue on Skills and Migration
In preparation of a possible reform of the EU Blue Card and a new Commission communication on legal migration and integration, the dialogue will help the Commission to better understand the challenges economic actors face with skills and labour shortages and the role played by skilled non-EU workers. These challenges will require new actions on labour migration and in facilitating labour market integration.
The public event will take place on 28 January 2016, with a session made of keynote-speeches, workshops and a conclusive session where outcomes of the discussions held on 27 and 28 January will be summarised. On 27 January, a dinner roundtable with selected representatives of public and private employers will take place on the basis of individual invitations sent by the Commission.
Registration for the 28 January session can be done here. Participation will be confirmed by the Commission as there are very limited places in the selected venue.
Interrogating Citizenship, Race and Ethnic Relations
Black Europe Summer School Program 2016
June 20 – July 1, 2016
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Now in its 9th year, the overall goal of this intensive two-week course is to examine the contemporary circumstances of the African Diaspora in Europe. We will focus on the historical and colonial legacies of European countries to discuss the origins of Black Europe and investigate the impact of these legacies on policies and legislation today.
This course addresses the dimensions of race and ethnic relations that are unique to Europe; examining the ways in which conceptions of the “other” are institutionalized and reproduced; the rise of xenophobia in various EU countries; issues such as global racisms, everyday racism, and epistemic racism; the legal definitions and discourse surrounding the conceptualized “other”; and examining the ways in which each country has dealt with issues of race and national identity. Issues of race, class, gender, and sexuality are central analytics, and scholars from the social sciences and humanities and NGOs working against racism and xenophobia in Europe are encouraged to apply.
At the Chineke! Foundation, we think that all young people deserve the chance to grow and develop as musicians, regardless of who they are or where they come from. Chineke! therefore seeks to be a force for good in the classical music industry, levelling the playing field for young Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) music students, and helping to create a vibrant new generation of professional musicians of all colours.
At the Chineke! Foundation, our goal is to make music, so at the heart of our project are our two orchestras.
Chosen through a rigourous audition process, the Chineke! Junior Orchestra represents the very best young BME talent between the ages of 11-18. Mentored and tutored by our senior musicians, the Junior Orchestra is truly where the future of classical music lies!
Meet the two sisters that make up half the Board of Directors
Candace Allen is a novelist and essayist, with a particular affinity towards music. In her book Soul Music The Pulse of Race and Music she investigated the inspirational personal, social and political power of music, visiting the Sistema programme in Caracas and its off-shoots in the UK and US as well as similar projects in Palestine and Kinsasha. Her novel Valaida, was based on the life of trumpet-player Valaida Snow. She was a political activist in her time at Harvard University in the late 60s/early 70s – instrumental in the establishment of its African and African-American Studies Department, now headed by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. — and again during the 2008 Obama campaign. She is frequently asked for broadcast and newspaper comment on culture, race and politics.
In a previous life she was the first African-American female member of the Directors Guild of America, spending some twenty years in Hollywood film production. She lived in Berlin for several years in the 1980s and has lived in London since 1994.
Lady Joy Amazu
Joy qualified as a chartered accountant with Horwath Clark Whitehill and became a member of both the ICAEW & ICAN, in doing so, setting a Guinness world record for the most chartered accountants in one family along with her father Chief David Dafinone and her 3 brothers and sister.
After qualifying as an accountant Joy worked for KPMG in their UK Financial Services tax division before joining General Electric (GE).
In 2003, she became a partner at Horwath Dafinone, the largest indigenous firm of Chartered Accountants in Nigeria. Joy used her expertise in UK tax to customise Sage’s payroll software in the Nigerian market and in 2005 the firm were in the top 10 resellers of SAGE worldwide.
Following the birth of her first daughter in 2006, Joy joined Amazoil, where she is now a director.
Founder – Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE
Chi-chi Nwanoku MBE
Chi-chi is Principal Double Bassist and co-founder of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. She is Professor of Double Bass Historical Studies at the Royal Academy of Music, and was made a Fellow there 1998.
Her range of musical interests has resulted in a broad career performing and recording in a diversity of styles from authentic baroque through to 21st century and new commissions, with many of Europe’s leading chamber orchestras and ensembles. Some of her notable chamber recordings include Schubert’s ‘Trout’ Quintet (recorded three times), and Octet, Beethoven Septet, Hummel Piano quintet and Boccherini Sonatas. Her solo recording of Dittersdorf and Vanhal Concertos with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra; Hyperion CD 67179 received critical acclaim.
In 2012 Barrie Gavin directed a documentary film about Chi-chi’s career, called ‘Tales from the Bass Line’.
As a broadcaster, Chi-chi presented BBC Radio 3 Requests for four years, she guests for the TV Proms and was Jury member of BBC 2 TV Classical Star. She will be presenting a new two part series for BBC Radio 4 in 2015 which brings to life the stories and music of black composers and musicians from the eighteenth century, whose vivid presence on the classical music scene have slipped through the net!
She sits on the Board of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, and National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, is a Patron of the Mayor of London’s Fund for Young Musicians, Music Preserved, and the Cherubim Trust. Chi-chi is a past board member of the Association of British Orchestras.
The Salomon Prize was launched in 2011 by the ABO/RPS and celebrates the ‘unsung heroes’ of orchestral life; the orchestral players that make our orchestras great. It is Chi-chi’s brainchild.
Chi-chi was awarded an MBE for services to Music in the 2001 Queen’s Birthday honours. She was voted one of the ‘100 – Happy List’ in the Independent on Sunday 2011. And she still loves the blues!
That would be me. Here’s a little about yours truly:
My name is Lauren, and I’m a teacher. I’ve lived, traveled and dated in different countries around the world, including Argentina, Colombia, Bolivia, and South Korea to name a few. I’m in my late twenties and I grew up in the United States.
I’m living in South Korea now, but I want this website to be more exhaustive with activity from many different countries.
My hobbies include writing, cooking, and learning about foreign cultures and languages.
Generally speaking, I really enjoy my lifestyle and the way things are going. You can read more about me on my personal blog, titled With the Blood of a Wanderer.
Moira Clare Ruby Stuart OBE is a British presenter, who was the first African-Caribbean female newsreader on British television. She has presented many television news and radio programmes for the BBC and is currently the newsreader for The Chris Evans Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2.
Moira Stuart’s career in radio and television spans more than two decades. She started her BBC career as a production assistant in Radio’s Talks and Documentaries department in the 1970s , before moving on to become a BBC Radio 4 announcer and a newsreader and programme presenter. Moira moved to television news in 1981 to become the first female African-Caribbean newsreader, presenting every type of BBC News bulletin before leaving in 2007.
Moira has presented many programmes on radio and television including Best Of Jazz on Radio 2, BBC1’s The Holiday Programme, Have I Got News For You! in 2007, and her documentary Moira Stuart in Search of Wilberforce. BBC One’s successful documentary series Who Do You Think You Are? featured Moira in 2004, and she made a memorable appearance as herself in Extras in 2006 .
She has won numerous awards including the TV and Radio Industries Club Best Newscaster awards and the Women Of Achievement Television Personality award, she was awarded an OBE in 2001, and she received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Edinburgh in 2006.
Moira has served on various boards and judging panels including Amnesty International, The Royal Television Society, BAFTA, United Nations Association, the London Fair Play Consortium, the Human Genetics Advisory Commission, the Orange Prize for Literature, the BUPA Communications Panel, the IVCA and the Queen’s Anniversary Prize, and the Grierson Trust.