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8 Black-Led Organizations To Support This Juneteenth

This Saturday is Juneteenth, a historically significant event in American history that marks the official end of slavery in the United States. While Juneteenth (which took place on June 19, 1865) is a joyous commemoration, its backstory is a bittersweet one. The day saw federal troops land in Galveston, Texas, where they announced that the war had ended and that the enslaved were now free. The problem? The news had been made official two years prior, following President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. But Texans were not made aware until later, on what is now known as Juneteenth.

There are different theories to support the discrepancy, and while there isn't one definitive answer, one thing’s for sure: Juneteenth, aka "Freedom Day" and "Emancipation Day," should be celebrated.

How Can We Commemorate Juneteenth?

Juneteenth is a day dedicated to educating yourself on Black history. This is especially true for those who don't identify as Black. Non-Black individuals will never be able to fully grasp the Black experience, but taking the time to read, listen and learn is key to becoming a productive ally.

Donating to and promoting Black-led organizations and businesses is another great way to commemorate this milestone anniversary (if you're able to financially, of course). Vital Proteins® staffers opened up about the organizations and businesses they're supporting this Juneteenth. Keep reading to learn more about each of them, what they stand for, and why they should be on your radar.

building bridges

1. Building Bridges, Inc®

"Building Bridges, Inc® is an organization ran by someone I used to work with (Shyretha Brown) and they focus on teaching STEM to young girls and foster education. I have volunteered multiple times with this organization and seeing the girls faces light up when they discover a part of STEM that they love is really inspiring."

- Brittany Towers, Senior Manager of Product Development & Commercialization 

Photo: @iambbinc/Instagram

growing home

2. Growing Home

"I love Growing Home's mission to provide all people and communities with local, organic, fresh food. Growing Home's five full-time farmers grow over 200 varieties of vegetables in Chicago's Englewood neighborhood and all produce is grown, harvested, cleaned, and sold within a 20-mile radius."

- Hannah Tate, Retail Marketing Manager 

Photo: @growinghome/Instagram

therapy for black girls

3. Therapy For Black Girls®

"I believe everyone should be in therapy, which is why I'm such a fan of Therapy For Black Girls®. Prioritizing mental health and seeking professional help is still very much taboo, but this online space, which specifically caters to Black women, makes connecting with a licensed therapist easy and accessible. Not only is it a directory, but Therapy For Black Girls® also houses other mental health resources to make the journey much less daunting, like culturally relevant blog posts, a community platform and a podcast."

- Grace Gavilanes, Senior Editorial Manager

Photo: @therapyforblackgirls/Instagram

uncle bobbie's

4. Uncle Bobbie's

"I love supporting local businesses in my community, especially bookstores. If you know of a local Black-owned bookstore, or one that you can't make it to in person, you can support them by buying books through, which helps financially support local, independent bookstores. One of my favorites to support in Philadelphia is Uncle Bobbie's. Their mission is to provide underserved communities with access to books and a space where everyone feels valued."

- Jordan Smith, Content Writer 

Photo: @unclebobbies/Instagram

equality should be normal

5. Equality Should Be Normal

"Equality Should Be Normal is fighting to eradicate racism and end violence in communities. They are headquartered in Chicago and have done amazing programs like pumping gas for people who don't feel safe due to car jackings, handing out groceries to those in need, and offering onsite therapists for Wellness Wednesdays."

- Brittany Towers, Senior Manager of Product Development & Commercialization 

Photo: @equalityshouldbenormal/Instagram

6. VidaAfrolatina

"While it's not a stateside organization, I want to highlight VidaAfrolatina, an international women's fund that offers resources and funds to Black and Afro-descendant women's groups that are addressing sexual violence in Latin America. They do this by financially supporting organizations, so these locally run groups can continue to provide counseling and other initiatives to help sexual violence survivors heal and flourish."

- Grace Gavilanes, Senior Editorial Manager

Photo: @vidaafrolatina_fund/Instagram

plant salon

7. Plant Salon

"This is my all-time favorite plant shop in Chicago. Plant Salon is like a treasure trove, you never know what you're going to find unless you shift through the shelves of greenery. They also sell natural beauty products, plant tools, and art by local black artists. I can't recommend it enough."

- Jess Stowe, Graphic Designer

Photo: @plantsalonchicago/Instagram

youth job center

8. Evanston Youth Job Center

"A traditional four-year college may not be the best path for everyone, and the Evanston Youth Job Center is a group of passionate folks that do vital work providing career paths for young people for whom college might not be the best or even a viable option. I was happy to volunteer my time developing a mobile platform for them that allowed them to ditch their multitude of notebooks and folders they used for CRM. I'm proud to help and raise my children in a progressive community like Evanston, the first U.S. city to offer a reparation program."   

- Chris Vincent, Business Analyst

Photo: @youthjobcenter1114/Instagram

Cities across the U.S. are hosting summits, parades, presentations and more. Looking for more ways to celebrate Juneteenth? Check out a list of upcoming events here.