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Guest editor: Black Lives Matter Society President YYC Adora Nwofor

Happy Black future month, Calgary!

From where I sit, the future is Black and it is bright. 

Though, very often, when you hear Calgary you do not think of Blackness. It is not considered a “Black City.”

How can it be?

Calgary is meant to be an oil and gas city,

a ski city, 

a cowboy city,

a Stampede city. 

How can it be Black, too?

But, believe it or not, I am born and raised here, and I want people to know that Calgary contains a multitude and Blackness is an integral part of it all. We have a history here and we have a future here.

Thank you theSCENE for giving me an opportunity to amplify Black voices in my city. I also want to thank all those who I reached out to for this edition and said yes to share their voices.

Black is not a monolith anywhere and it certainly isn’t one here. We have all kinds of Black people and I wanted to share a little peek into some of their lives, what they do, what they’re creating and what is bright in their future. Whether they are taking on podcasting, fashion, arts, community building, business or activism, Black people are in everything in this city, and we need more of that everywhere. 

Calgary is brimming with Black people doing incredible things. We are internationally known. We are world renowned. We are award winning. And some of us are just beginning to create our magic. So whether you’re young or old, experienced or naïve, creating or still finding your creative voice, Calgary should be a place where all of us can thrive. 

I have always been striving to thrive. I love being Black and that means I love Black people. 

What I saw in Calgary over the last year showed me that some people really do care about Black lives and that we matter every day, but it’s not enough that it’s only some. This is just the beginning of a new experience for Black people, one where they get to determine their lives. That’s where our future is headed.

If you’re reading this, I would implore you to connect with the people you see featured here and learn more about them. Connect with other Black people by supporting them as a true friend, amplifying their voice, amplifying their art, amplifying their business. 

We are not a month. We are not a monolith, but we are to be celebrated. And the future is bright. 

(Photo: Leah Hennel.)

Adora Nwofor is an activist, broadcaster, artist, comic and the president of Black Lives Matter YYC.

(Ed. note: We acknowledge that we live, work and play on the traditional territories of the Blackfoot Confederacy (Siksika, Kainai, Piikani), the Tsuutina, the Îyâxe Nakoda Nations, the Métis Nation (Region 3), and all people who make their homes in the Treaty 7 region of Southern Alberta. And we thank them.)