Blackgirl Gold Unapologetic, Inc. (BGU) is a tax-exempt public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the IRC. We provide annual funding to advance work that centers the lives of Blackgirls*. We currently serve Blackgirls aged 18–99.
Blackgirl is an intersectional identity* that applies to girls and women folk of African ascent and does not separate ones racial identity from ones gender identity. Additionally, Blackgirl is not bound by age; we are Blackgirls from birth to infinity. Robin Boylorn (2018) shares, "I started writing blackgirl as one word in an effort to acknowledge that my race and sex are inextricable markers that influence how I experience the world and how the world experiences me... By taking out the space I was erasing the assumed pause (read apology, explanation, stereotype) between my identities." The lives of Blackgirls are complex and contradictory; she is not a monolith, nor an anomaly. When we center the lives of Blackgirls, we honor the work of radical self-care, liberatory education, community accountability, and unapologetic, creative expression.
Growing up on the South Side of Chicago, Billye (Founder of BGU) was/is a Blackgirl in love with the 80’s, writing stories, and creating friendships. While her greatest influence has always been her mother, Mary Rhodes, she was inspired by Mary McLeod Bethune, Nikki Giovanni and Audre Lorde to fully realize the obligation of her gift – writing – and the need to sow it as a tool of reflexivity and agency for other Blackgirls. Moreover, understanding the importance of building strong financial institutions, in 2015 she began to sow tithes into various individuals and community initiatives such as Feed the People, The Black Mall, and LYRIC Squad. This practice of sowing "in her backyard" birthed Blackgirl Gold Unapologetic Scholarships and Awards.
Blackgirl Gold Unapologetic (BGU) became active as an incorporated, non-profit public charity, February 16, 2018. We awarded our first scholarships, September 1, 2018.