In response to the COVID-19 virus, Black people have rolled up their sleeves and are working diligently to thwart its ruin in communities around the world. From implementing effective containment strategies to creating medical equipment, supplies, and improved testing processes—prevention efforts are underway. These “can do” efforts reflect a long history of Africans producing knowledge and technology that benefits the world. This article delineates some of the early African achievements in science and technology, like the development of mathematical concepts more than 35,000 years ago and the medicinal use of plants with salicylic acid (used in aspirin) for pain. Written by a biologist, this article offers a lens through which to view the lineage of prevention efforts offered by Black doctors, inventors, and others working to end the COVID-19 pandemic. They represent a long tradition of Black people creating and producing what is needed to solve problems and thrive. Click below to be historically inspired.
Want to be inspired by the creative intelligence of 4 African inventors? Then
consider how they have invented a solar powered hand washing station, a
portable ventilator, and more effective testing kits. These men and women have directed their efforts to developing products that help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Faced with a challenge, each inventor went to work figuring out what would help produce a remedy. Considering how to be an asset in the midst of adversity is a powerful thought process that can well serve communities during and after the pandemic. Cultivating the ability to imagine solutions is priceless. Click below and discover examples of what an “I have the answer” mindset can produce.
If you’d like to enjoy a refreshing take on the use of social media, read further and be enlivened by 16-year old Alexis Loverez. With encouragement from friends, he began showcasing impressive math skills using TikTok. The Harlem Prep School student teaches math concepts to peers who congregate daily. His popularity is a wonderful example of how social media can be used for good, and the power of positive peer influence. Can you imagine how this ongoing experience is helping to build the confidence of Black, brown and other learners around the world? Let’s share this article widely as an incentive for using social media platforms to magnify good. Doing so could actually inspire young people to step up and into more empowered visions of life. Click below to view a video of Alexis Loverez bringing math to the masses!
Ursula Burns, the former Xerox CEO who guided the company from imminent failure to recovered success, has lots of experience navigating challenges. To help move people though difficulties imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic, she offers compelling advice for how to spend sheltering-in-place time; become a better steward of your body and mind. Burns further encourages people to “look for the remedy in the reset.” Both suggestions affirm the power of activating self-accountability. She reminds us that while the pandemic will cause “resets” in varied areas of life, whether the reset improves or diminishes your life is mostly up to you. “We can sit back and let people do it for us or be actively engaged . . .” To help navigate the day-to-day challenges new norms can present, this advice is shared as encouragement for visioning the tomorrow you really want. Click below for tips on making the most out of trying times.