Join the #SmearForSmear selfie campaign for Cervical Cancer Prevention Week


It’s cervical cancer prevention week and Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust is raising awareness with the #SmearForSmear 2019 campaign. To get involved all you have to do is post a #SmearForSmear selfie smearing your lipstick. I know it’s a beauty fax pas you would never dream of doing intentionally, but your selfie with tip or word of support encouraging women to go for cervical screening (also known as a smear test), could actually save a life!

Credit: Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust

Cervical screening is free but is not a test for cancer. It identifies cell changes (abnormalities) on your cervix (the entrance to the womb) caused by high-risk human papillomavirus (HPV). These abnormal cells can be removed, helping to prevent cancer. For those old enough to remember, Big Brother / reality TV star Jade Goody sadly died from cervical cancer 10 years ago on 22 March 2009, aged 27. Her death coined the term, the ‘Jade Goody effect’ when screening rates increased following her death. According to reports, the number of  women aged 25 to 49 in England who went for screening  increased from 69.3% in March 2008 to 72.5% in March 2009.

Flash forward a few years and NHS Digital say the number of eligible women (aged 25-64) going for cervical screening in England has fallen for the fourth year running. Public Health England (PHE) also say that women from ethnic minority groups and women between ages 25-29 are ‘frequent non-attenders’ of screening; but you can help change all this.

It’s not always easy finding complimentary lipstick shades for darker skin tones, but over the past couple of years ranges have expanded.

Continue reading “Join the #SmearForSmear selfie campaign for Cervical Cancer Prevention Week”

Interview with Wanita Bardouille: Creative Services Director at Ralph Lauren on her BBB Award nomination


It’s Black History Months (BHM) and awards season, so I caught up with Black British Business Award finalist Wanita Bardouille, Creative Services (CS) Director at Ralph Lauren (RL). Nominated in the Leader Category, I wanted to know how she feels about it all!

How does it feel to be nominated for a BBB Award?
Really nice, but I’m quite reserved and don’t like the spotlight too much so it was a bit hard to accept.

Do you think it’s necessary to have the BBB Awards?
Of course, when I was nominated one of the founders said, black professionals in prominent positions have a responsibility to allow others to see them and hopefully feel inspired.  

What does it mean to be a leader?
I’m part of the Diversity and Inclusion Team at work and give talks in schools. It’s important to give back and encourage others to be authentic to themselves. Once a headteacher said to me, “I don’t know why you want to talk to these girls; they all just want to be hairdressers and nail technicians”. I reminded him that Vidal Sassoon was a hairdresser! For me, it’s not what you dream but how big you dream it; I encourage young people to believe in their own value.

Continue reading “Interview with Wanita Bardouille: Creative Services Director at Ralph Lauren on her BBB Award nomination”

Alexandra Palace Outdoor Cinema Captures the Dreamgirls Musical Vibe


To the back drop of the iconic London skyline, on the grounds of Alexandra Palace, Block Party Cinema hosted a special event which rounded off the Great British summer we had this year.

The weather held out and I joined the crowd of people eating food and ‘cutting shapes’ (as they say,) with my dance moves during the silent ‘diva disco’. It was my first time at a silent disco; a great concept because everyone around me had headphones, so I could sing out of tune freely! @pxssypalace DJ KKINBOO was on the decks and didn’t disappoint.

Continue reading “Alexandra Palace Outdoor Cinema Captures the Dreamgirls Musical Vibe”

Angela Davis shows activism only needs one common goal


The Free Angela and All Political Prisoners documentary released in 2012, recounted the extraordinary events that simultaneously made Angela Davis infamous and heroic. I hadn’t watched it until last week; it reminded me of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Focussing on the events surrounding the Soledad Brothers case that led to Davis becoming a murder suspect and fugitive on the FBI’s most wanted list, the documentary highlight why unity in activism is important.

Continue reading “Angela Davis shows activism only needs one common goal”

5 musicals to see in London, if you haven’t already


The UK has seen record breaking temperatures this summer, which inevitably encouraged people to make the most of their weekends. Summer also brings about nostalgia vibes and al fresco experiences. We all love a sing-a-long, so bring on award winning and critically acclaimed musicals to keep us entertained for the rest of the summer:

1.     The Lion King at the Lyceum Theatre – Award winning adaptation of the Disney’s animated film of the same name, has been going strong since 1999.

2.     TINA – The Tina Turner Musical at Aldwych Theatre – One of the most highly anticipated musicals in years, showcases the extraordinary life of a music industry heavyweight.

3.     Dreamgirls at the Savoy Theatre – Inspired by the Oscar-award winning film that brought us the sounds of black America in the 1960s and led to Jennifer Hudson wining the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. If you don’t want to see this one indoors, Block Party Cinema will be screening the original 2006 film, al fresco style on 18th August –  tickets available via http://www.blockpartycinema.co.uk/

4.     Hamilton: An American Musical at Victoria Palace Theatre – The critically acclaimed ‘story of America’ drew praise and controversy after casting non-white actors as the founding fathers. The production infuses the sounds of hip-hop, pop and R&B; in 2016 it won 11 Tony awards including Best Musical.

5.     The Greatest Love of All Show – A Tribute to Whitney Houston, reminds us of one of the greatest singers of all time, that we lost too soon. This is on tour across the UK.

Ad+s Diaspora Blog

Snippets of an African legacy

*

www.adsdiaspora.com

*

Twitter: @adsdiaspora

Instagram:@ads_diaspora

www.facebook.com/adsdiaspora

www.pinterest.co.uk/adsdiaspora

Google +: plus.google.com/+AdsDiaspora

Angela Davis was right when she said “we needed a Donald Trump”


Before Donald Trump bulldozed into the UK last week, everyone knew there would be drama. Waves of protests in support of and against the US president were seen in England and Scotland.

Donald Trump was only in the UK for a few days, but his presence led to an estimated 250,000 protesters marching through London, along with the famous inflatable ‘Donald Trump baby’.  A far-right protest was also happening in the capital and some of those protesters were singing Donald Trump’s praises (of course). Wherever he goes, the Trump effect is palpable.

After criticising UK Prime Minister Theresa May, then sitting down to dinner with her and having tea with the Queen, Trump went to his luxury resort in Scotland for some downtime. However, Scottish protesters made it clear that Trump was ‘not welcome’ in their country because of his views, interpreted as racist and misogynistic.

As the leader of what is said to be the most powerful nation on earth, I get why Trump is constantly served to us on a platter by the media. Usually upon hearing his name I do the classic eye roll and sigh. Sometimes I actually laugh in moments of disbelief at what comes out of his mouth. Trump’s comedic value is up there with the best of them. All jokes aside, I am aware of how dangerous Trump is.

It was a quote from one of the most candid political activists of our time, Angela Davis, that made me think Donald Trump does serve a purpose. While many are repulsed by his views, there is no doubt that Trump has awoken the social consciousness of everyone.

Last year during a speech at Florida Atlantic University, while condemning Trump, Angela Davis stated, “maybe we need a Donald Trump to wake us up”.

Davis has been a political activist for decades and played a key role in the civil rights movement in America. However, it was in the early 1970s that she became infamous after being linked to the ‘Soledad Brothers’ case and listed as a fugitive on the FBI’s most wanted list. Davis was imprisoned, but during one of the most captivating trials of its time (hence inspiring a documentary), was exonerated by an all-white jury.

Angela Davis, Donald Trump, documentary, film, cinema
The documentary inspired by Angela Davis’ unique life story

In addition to affiliation with the Black Panther movement and more recently Black Lives Matter, Davis has also been described as a feminist. As a staunch adversary of Trump, at the age of 74, Davis shows no sign of her political activism abating.

There’s no doubt Trump’s presence on the global political landscape has inspired many. Trump inspires his supporters, who claimed they didn’t have a voice before him and everyone else who was wrapped up in apathy but now forced to stand against oppressive ideologies.

 

Ad’s Daispora

Snippets of an African Legacy

Photo credit: Block Party Cinema

Important quotes from I Am Not Your Negro documentary


We still live in a world where racial narratives are clearly defined and blurred at the same time. Despite some progress in racial equality policy, some of the issues around race that were acute decades ago, are still poignant now.

Many black story tellers have pointed out the similarities and nuances between racial narratives past and present, but when I watched the documentary, I Am Not Your Negro at Block Party Cinema’s Film Club series, it remined me of how racism is driven by mindset. It’s these ideologies that drive the social structures built to oppress the powerless.

james baldwin
The Oscar nominated (2017), BATFA award winning (2018) documentary, based on James Baldwin’s last unfinished manuscript – Remember This House. Photo credit: Block Party Cinema

I was quite lucky to find The Film Club showing of this award-winning documentary, released in 2016. Upon arrival, there was a DJ’s, street food and the signature beanbags, and just before the film started a brief synopsis was given by the Block Party team. Some of the quotes from the documentary that will stay with me are below, if you’ve seen the documentary which quotes resonate with you? Comment below.

1.

“I was not a Black Muslim, for the same vein, though for different reasons that I did not become a Black Panther, because I did not believe that white people were devils and I did not want the young Black people to believe that.

2.

“If we were white, our heroes would be your heroes too. Malcolm X would still be alive…when the Israelis or the Poles pick up guns and say ‘give me liberty or give me death,’ the entire white world applauds. When a Black man says exactly the same thing, he is judged a criminal and treated like one. Everything is done to make an example of this bad n**ga so there won’t be anymore like him.”

3.

“All of the Western nations have been caught in a lie: a lie of their pretended humanism. History has no moral justification and the west has no moral authority.

4.

“History is not the past, “It is the present. We carry our history with us. We are our history.”

5.

The world is not white. It can’t be, whiteness is just a metaphor for power“.

6.

What white people have to do, is try and find out in their own hearts why it was necessary to have a nigger in the first place, because I’m not a nigger, I’m a man, but if you think I’m a nigger, it means you need it.

Ad+s Diaspora Blog

Snippets of an African legacy

*

www.adsdiaspora.com

*

Twitter: @adsdiaspora

Instagram:@ads_diaspora

www.facebook.com/adsdiaspora

www.pinterest.co.uk/adsdiaspora

Google +: plus.google.com/+AdsDiaspora