February 2018 Health Notes Archives

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William Matthew Little was active in civil right efforts for over sixty years. As president of the Minnesota chapter of the NAACP, He organized busloads of Minnesota activist for the historic 1963 March On Washington. He has rallied for continued support of affirmative action and desegregation of the Minnesota Public Schools. He supported the NAACP lawsuit against the government of Minnesota, which charged the public school system with failing to provide an equal education to all children. He cultivated a strong relationship and influence with the African American community and the business community and was instrumental in persuading the Minnesota Vikings management to hire Dennis Green as their first black head coach. In recognition of his accomplishments and contributions to his community, he received numerous awards. He was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree from the University of Minnesota Law School.

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Lissa Jones is the outspoken articulate host of KMOJ’s (89.9 FM) Urban Agenda. Urban Agenda investigates the impact that beliefs and values held around ‘race’, place, class, identity, orientation, gender, faith, and occupation (vocation) impact the behavior of individuals, groups and structures within organizations.

“This is equity: just and fair inclusion into a society in which all can participate, prosper, and reach their full potential. Unlocking the promise of the nation by unleashing the promise in us all.” –

Lissa shared her enthusiasm knowledge and love of Black history with Health Notes

Titilayo Bediako was born and raised in Minnesota, and is the daughter of civil rights leader Matthew Little. She is instrumental in using African and African American history
to African American youth through WE WIN Institute ( a non-profit organization dedicated to the academic and social success of all children)

Titilayo says participating in African rituals helps give African-American youth a sense that they belong to something larger than themselves or their surroundings.
She says that’s something she never received when she was in school. After graduating from high school, she moved to Tennessee where she joined an African history study group. “The more I studied and the more I learned about myself, the more my given name, which was Michelle Little, didn’t fit the person I had become,” The name Titilayo is from the Yoruba of Nigeria. She says it means “everlasting happiness.” Bediako is from the Ashanti people of Ghana and it means, “born to struggle for her people.”
Participating in African-rooted rituals and ceremonies, like Kwanzaa, is one way African-Americans nurture their African side. “So I get everlasting happiness in struggling for my people,” says Bediako. “The one thing that I’ve learned is that struggling for African people makes it possible to struggle for all people.”

Many African-Americans have adopted African names. Despite attempts to identify with Africans, African-Americans carry the physical and emotional baggage of slavery and racism.
Titilayo says many African-Americans have poor self-esteem because they were born in a country that historically has devalued their lives.

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