Stand Up Atlanta is here to uplift, support and serve Black and Brown communities.
Melanin Day is my business which is very new - focusing on uplifting black women and I’ll eventually be selling self care and home decor items this fall. - Cartier
What is Stand Up Atlanta all about? How would you introduce yourself?
I am Cartier Williams, founder of Stand Up Atlanta. I initiated this community at the beginning of June, right after the George Floyd protests broke out. A friend of mine helped us out throughout the process, her name is Maize. She’s currently stepping back to work on herself for the foreseeable future.
So as of now, I’m running the organisation by myself. The plan at first was to help protesters who were on the front lines - so I came up with the medical kits.
Everything was homemade, we would pass them out to protests or leave them with other groups and ask them to share it with other people/protesters - water bottles, ice packs, band aids, gauze, witch hazel, etc.
Your organisation has been in action for about two months now, has there been any event when you felt overwhelmed by everything? Since the #BLM movement is very important and sensitive for all of us, what were the problems you guys have faced during the course of past two months?
There have been a lot of moments when we were overwhelmed by everything going on, as a Black woman and Maize, a White woman. Things affected me differently. I think the work to be anti-racist is hard but needs be to consistent.
For me personally it’s actually been more of a positive experience. Finding the needs of the community and fulfilling it. Getting the self care kits for black women, to show them love has made me happy. I hope it makes them happy and feel appreciated too.
Then making the food baskets for black kids and their families being impacted by Covid-19. All of this has made the purpose of Stand Up Atlanta stronger. We also take help from other organizations and local mutual aids.
What is your current status? As of now, what are the next steps from your side you’re thinking of implementing?
I have arranged meetings with local organizations, one of them focuses on feeding people. They're connecting me with a local farm here.
I’ll be working to get the baskets together, each basket will have a recipe card, fresh produce, pantry staples, and hopefully meat if possible. My goal is for at least 9 weeks is that at least 100+ people will receive these baskets.
Hopefully, we can grow and be here for a long term providing food, becoming a non-profit so I can I obtain more funding and do more for the communities I hope to serve.
Where do you see Stand Up Atlanta going in future? What are your future plans and goals and how do you aim to achieve them?
I’ll be doing more giveaways for Black women, and continuing advocating for black women on Hear Her my podcast.
I see a space where people can come pick up their food baskets, medical supplies, personal hygiene supplies, for free or cheaper than the local stores.
Support for families: getting them a job, resume, counseling services and other mental health services if need be, tutoring/financial services/education/stem learning for children and teens. I’ve always wanted to open a non profit, just happened a lot sooner than I thought. But I hope to be a community resource.
Continuing building relationships with local organizations, I’ve met some amazing people in the last couple of months, fundraising, hopefully bringing on more people who are ready to do the work of making things equal for all, building equity and making changes in our communities.
Being an independent organization, what according to you are the most important things to keep in mind when running a project at this scale? You know, if advising someone new who wants to work for social causes as well.
Start with what you want to see, then work on how you can make it happen. By providing, speaking up, donating and not giving up. In order to see the change we want, we all have to do our part.
Presented to you by:
@100TalesCampaign, an All Ears initiative.
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