Parents who inspire: Lucretia Berry

We’re back with another feature in the Parent Who Inspires series! I’m so excited to introduce you to Dr. Lucretia Berry, co-founder of Brownicity: The Art & Beauty of Living & Loving Beyond Race. The internet connected me with Lucretia somewhere along the way and then I had the good fortune of meeting her in person at Facing Race, a national conference put on by Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation. She is an amazing person and I know you’ll all be as inspired as I am by her work.

Brownicity (pronounced like ethnicity) is dedicated to building the capacity of everyone to engage in courageous thinking, conversations and living that counter the lie, ideology and legacy of race. Lucretia is a former professor of curriculum and instruction as well as the author of What LIES Between Us: Fostering First Steps Toward Racial Healing, A Journal and Guide. She facilitates group studies for companies, schools, churches and community groups and is also a sought-after speaker and coach.

Let’s get to know Lucretia below!

Tell us a bit about yourself”

My name is Lucretia and I, along with my husband, Nathan, co-founded Brownicity: The Art & Beauty of Living & Loving Beyond Race, a family-focused grass roots initiative dedicated to advocacy, education and support for racial healing and antiracism. We have three little girls, Sinclair, London, and Quinn and currently are living and loving life in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Berry family

As a parent, what’s your favorite part about living in your city?

As a parent, I love the ethnic, social and economic diversity of the Charlotte, NC area. We are a multi-ethnic family who appreciates the beauty of diversity reflected in this community. I love that my children get to do life with friends whose ethnic backgrounds are different than their own.

In what ways are you civically engaged with your local or national community, either professionally, personally or both?

Brownicity is essentially a conversation birthed from our family’s need to establish a shared ethnic identity in a hyper-racialized society. As a multiethnic family, we wanted our children to internalize that we are one human family, all hues of brown, who have been erroneously categorized into racial groups. We have extended that conversation to our friends and community. We offer resources, classes (‘What LIES Between Us’)  and fun-shops (‘Color Conversations’) to help grow the capacity of families to engage in recovering from the damage of race/ism to our psyches and communities.

 

What’s your favorite part of your civic engagement activities?

I love to help parents with the practical application of empowering children with language and a framework, which raises the family’s consciousness as a whole. I love seeing parents grow in their courage to acknowledge and address issues of race/ism with their children.

What inspires you to engage in these activities?

My motivation and inspiration for sharing through Brownicity is somewhat selfish. Honestly, I want my little girls and their friends to feel empowered in their true identities and not be limited by our societies obsession with race. Not only do I want to prepare them for the racial nonsense we’ve inherited, but equip them to create a better way.

Any words of wisdom for parents wanting to create space for civic engagement in their own busy lives? 

Parents wanting to create space for civic engagement in their own busy lives can start in their children’s spaces—home, neighborhood, school, extra-curricular activities. I’ve had the opportunity to be a ‘guest speaker’ in my children’s classrooms, facilitate a professional development session for school staff, conduct a fun-shop at the local library and more.

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Lucretia is doing incredible work within her family and her community to foster dynamic conversations and enhance people’s capacity to address and combat racism. I love following her work and definitely encourage everyone to check out Brownicity on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and of course, take a gander at their offerings on their website.

Thank you, Lucretia, for all you do to help equip parents and children to understand race and racism in ways that encourage change and growth. Your work is inspiring so many people across the country!

 

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