2019 marks the 32nd year of Black History Month in the UK, where we observe those who came before us, making a difference to Empower the Youth to pick up the mantle left by previous generations as we move forward into a brighter future.
The global world is shrinking, with advances in communication and technology, as black people now the opportunities are endless and the boundaries removed. This year The Phoenix Newspaper celebrates Black History Month: The Next Generation, as we look towards the leading lights of our communities to inspire the next generation to believe that no dream is impossible.
With this special 12 page supplement, we are highlighting the unsung heroes and role models of all ages, backgrounds and cultures to produce an inspirational publication for our youth.
We want to thank Town Hall Symphony Hall for their unending support of both the newspaper, and the ongoing work sharing our vision of all people under one banner.
We would also like to give thanks to the Royal Air Force, who have been staunch supporters of all communities, especially the black community in the region.
Black History Month has a special place in many peoples hearts, for a wide variety of reasons.
While we will always look back and remember the feats and sacrifices made by previous generations for the betterment of all, especially those who were ‘Called To Order’ during and after the war, we must also be looking forward to our youth as the next generation in whom we trust.
We have planted the seeds so now it is time for our children to reap the fruits of our labour.
The Phoenix Newspaper, in collaboration with Town Hall & Symphony Hall Birmingham, celebrated the official launch of Black History Month 2019 in the Director’s Suite at Symphony Hall.
Presented by The Phoenix’s Dee Burrowes & Town Hall Symphony Hall’s Richard Loftus, specially invited guests; including multi-award winning musician, Apache Indian, Aisha Anifowoshe, Trade Development Officer at Grace Foods UK, filmed by the BBC, McDonald’s Restaurant franchisee, entrepreneur and philanthropist, Paul Ramsey, Phyllis Peters, Branch Manager at Victoria Mutual Finance Ltd in Birmingham, Joy Bailey of HSBC Bank, Town Hall Symphony Hall’s recently appointed Manager of Classical Music, Toks Dada, Birmingham Deputy Lord Mayor Councillor Yvonne Mosquito, Sam Duru of The Wolverhampton Black Business Network, lecturer and music impresario, Mykal Wassifa Brown, Donald Campbell, world record breaking muscleman ‘Big Dave’ Gauder, plus officials from the Royal Air Force, Royal Navy and West Midlands Police Force were just a few who were on hand, in the Director’s Suite which was especially convened for an exquisite afternoon of celebration and notification.
Richard Loftus, Director of Sales and Marketing at Town Hall and Symphony Hall Birmingham, whose diligence, hard work and on-going relationship help put the whole thing together, made a point that he was “extremely proud to work with The Phoenix Newspaper”. He also made note of the death of international opera star Jessye Norman, who performed at Symphony Hall in 1991, who died at the age of 74, and whose portait adorns the wall in Symphony Hall’s Directors Lounge.
The recently appointment Manager of Classical Music Toks Dada gave a heartwarming speech on the achievements of this great role model, including her Grammy Awards, and being the first black female opera singer to perform at the Symphony Hall.
“Despite your difficulties”, Cllr Mosquito said, “I have to especially thank you.”
“When you read The Phoenix Newspaper it is a privilege and a complete honour. I look forward to attend the Gala night and thank you for the work you do”.
Singer/songwriter, producer, radio and TV presenter, Apache Indian, who also runs the A.I.M. (Apache Indian Music) Academy at South & City College Birmingham (Handsworth Campus) was one who praised, wholeheartedly, The Phoenix Newspaper’s previous Anniversary Gala Dinner & Awards Show, highlighting the elevation it has brought to his already-stellar career and was “so looking forward to be performing at this year’s event – on November 16.
“I’ve performed around the world on numerous occasions, had seven Top 30 hits and performed tracks for Hollywood film classics like ‘Dumb and Dumber, but, to be performing at the ICC Birmingham on the night will go down as one of my all-time greatest achievements”.
The Phoenix Newspaper’s 9th Anniversary Gala Dinner & Awards Masquerade Ball props were visible in the masks worn by Marcia and her personal assistant Dee Burrowes, with everyone holding the coconuts, representative of the Caribbean and the cocktail red carpet reception at this years gala after party.
In thanking the huge gathering, The Phoenix Newspaper’s Founder/Editor-In-Chief, Marcia McLaughlin emphasized: “It took me 30 years of relentless work to be now able to demonstrate what my – our (The Phoenix Newspaper) aim has always remained to be and I thank all who attended today, and look forward to what promises to be a spectacular evening on November 16”.