black women

Woman Creates “Pretty Brown Girl” After Black Daughter Said She Wanted Long, Blonde Hair

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pretty brown girlReported by Liku Zelleke

International Pretty Brown Girl Day was created by the Pretty Brown Girl Foundation with the aim of empowering, inspiring and encouraging girls of color to love who they are and to increase their self-esteem and confidence. It was established in 2012 during Black History Month and is now celebrated by girls of every shade of brown from across the world. The day is celebrated every year on the fourth Saturday of February.

The Pretty Brown Girl Foundation’s mission statement encourages girls across the world to celebrate their unity and their diversity. The call for action includes organizations, schools, churches and community leaders to create their own chapters of Pretty Brown Girl clubs and launch them with celebrations on International Pretty Brown Girl Day.

The concept was the brainchild of Sheri Crawley. After moving her family to Detroit, Michigan, she soon saw Laila, her oldest daughter, undergo changes in her behavior. The normally bubbly girl became withdrawn and timid at school. She started saying she wanted long, blonde hair like the girls in her class.

Factoring in the realization that when given a choice, children gravitated towards lighter-skinned dolls and shunned brown ones (something Crawley also noticed while planning a birthday for her youngest daughter, Aliya), it was obvious that something needed to be done.

With the help of her husband, Corey, she started to encourage girls to be happy in their own skin and be proud of who they are. They created a product line for young girls with the slogan “Pretty Brown Girl” at its fore. This was soon transformed into the Pretty Brown Girl Movement, which offers products, workshops, events and clubs for girls and young women.

This year’s Pretty Brown Girl Day Celebration theme is to “Dream Big” with confidence, courage and character, says Crawley. It will be celebrated on Feb. 28th from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the South Shore Cultural Center in Chicago, Illinois. Although registration is free, seating is limited.

“It is significant that International Pretty Brown Girl Day is during Black History Month and will be hosted in Chicago this year where our story began,” Crawley said.

More information can be found at the organization’s website or their Facebook page.