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LipService: A Lips and Hips Newsletter
March 2014

Monthly Feature
***
Celebrating Women’s History
by Re-branding Feminism for 21st Century
The Lips and Hips (L&H) team has been celebrating Women's History Month all month long! This year’s theme is Character, Courage and Commitment as we take a look back on fearless women who have blazed trails for our equality, opportunity, and community identity.   
 
One way to honor the past is to connect it to how we can create progressive movement in the present into the future. So when thinking about a modern women’s movement that includes women’s rights regardless of race, class, and sexual preference, a clear historical icon that immediately comes to mind is abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth. It was in 1851 during the Women’s Convention in Ohio that she delivered her infamous “Ain’t I a Woman?” line in a speech that not only supported the women’s equality movement, but sparked the need for inclusion of race and class identity.  Sojourner demanded that women be treated as equals, but she also bravely pointed out the lack of rights black women were afforded compared to their white counterparts.  And that embodies the true essence of L&H – Sojourner was truly a woman of character, courage, and commitment! 
 
Armed with Sojourner’s insight, L&H is celebrating Women’s History by re-branding feminism for the 21st century through our newly launched
#MyFeminsim video campaign.  Our campaign aims to celebrate individuality and collective voice by having women of all different backgrounds define what feminism means to them.  By sharing these voices, feminism can be re-branded to be more inclusive and affirming, just as Sojourner intended.  Through this campaign, we hope stereotypes and misconceptions can be washed away.  It’s only when there is truth and understanding that the feminist movement can move forward to fight for and implement its ideals.  As people share their own character, courage, and commitment to feminism through their videos, we honor our past and plan for our future.  Read more about our campaign below and upload YOUR definition on feminism!
Upcoming Events
A new Leadership Class cohort starts this month!
Leadership Class
The next L&H Leadership Class kicks off March 22 and will meet monthly over the next year to help women â€œDream. Plan. Do.” For more info, check out our website at 
http://lipsandhipsonline.org.

Elevate Ann Arbor
Elevate Gen Y is kicking off their national conference tour in Ann Arbor on April 7.  Ladies, be prepared for a full day of personal, professional, and spiritual growth as the day’s panels and resources target young women looking for a well-rounded development experience.  L&H will be fully present as team members participate on a panel titled, Re-Charting the Course: Using Your Passion to Create Your Own Rules.  L&H will also host a table in the nonprofit hall.  If you’d like to attend, tickets are on sale at:
Elevate and using promo code ANNARBOR for a discount

MPH Nerdland Challenge
The L&H team loves to talk nerdy, don’t you?  Do you have what it takes to be a Nerdland Scholar? 
Melissa Harris-Perry, PhD - professor of Political Science and Director of the Anna Julia Cooper Center at Tulane University and host of the MSNBC Melissa Harris Perry Show - has created the Nerdland Scholar Challenge: The Mother of all Politics in honor of women's history month. Over 700 women join Melissa through Facebook, Twitter, and MSNBC website to engage in discussions regarding women's role in politics.  To learn more and join, visit 
MSNBC.
Women’s History Event
On Sunday, March 23rd from 3-4 pm, 
The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History  Vice President of Assessment & Community Engagement, LaNesha DeBardelaben, will give an encore presentation of her lecture,Advancing the Women and the Race: 100 Years of Black Women's Leadership in Detroit. The talk will explore the ways in which black women progressed issues of race and gender in Detroit during the highly-contested 100-year period from 1850 to 1950.  Audience members will discover the fascinating histories of lesser-known yet still important African American women from Detroit's past who forged a way for others to follow.  
The event is free and open to the public. For more information call (313) 494-5800.
Pillar Focus
L&H’s mission is to promote well-being in every facet of women's lives through our five pillars: health, spiritual, professional, personal, and financial well-being.  Through our blog, we explore a range of topics to create discussion and awareness. This month, we are spotlighting issues of finance and the effect of minimum wage on women's financial acumen and growth. 

With a special lens on the impact on women in our L&H community, team member Courtney looks in-depth at the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 as it seeks to increase the federal minimum wage for employees from $7.25 an hour to $8.20 an hour in the first year, with annual increases in subsequent years. Some don’t quite support raising minimum wage and believe it will not benefit low-income families, and increase unemployment. This is especially critical for women.  Research indicates that women are at least half of minimum wage earners in every state; most of these women are single-parents, increasing the stress of maximizing $15,000 a year annual income to provide for their families. What's more, years of discriminatory practices stop women from attaining economic growth and financial stability. How could the Fair Minimum Wage Act impact women? What could women do to secure financial independence? See more of our thoughts and chime in on this issue from the L&H blog!
Get to Know Us!
This month, we asked L&H team members: 
What song that embodies the essence of your feminism and self-expression stays on your LIPS and makes you move your HIPS?
"Jennifer Hudson's 'I Can't Describe (The Way I Feel)'. Definitely captures the complexities of being in the space right now. Not just in romantic relationships, but in all of my interactions as a Black/feminist/academic/activist. So many ways I feel about different issues affecting my communities. Uplifting beat and powerful voice nonetheless!"
- Courtney

 

 
"My song right now is definitely 'Grown Woman' by Beyonce."
- Kidada

 
"My theme song this month is Lorde's 'Royals'. I'm mostly in love with the beat but there's something pretty hot about "let me be your ruler, you can call me Queen Bee" that feels really empowering."
- Yodit


"'Girl on Fire' by Alicia Keys!"
- Jessica


"'Electric Lady' by Janelle Monáe. This song celebrates not being confined by societal definitions of women’s behavior or attitude.  And that to me is electrifying and affirming."
- Celeste
News Brief
Black Women Rock
In case you hadn’t heard, Black Women Rock!  And on March 16th, jessica Care moore and special guests brought a crowd of hundreds to their feet ROCKING OUT at this year’s Black Girls Rock in Detroit!  The year’s event included a diverse line up of black women artists singing, dancing, and painting to alternative and rock music.  It truly was a celebration of expression and proclamation. Also, a HUGE congrats to L&H Intern Dominique Mathews for winning an awesome acoustic guitar at this year’s event.  Perhaps we’ll see Dominique on stage rocking out at next years concert.

Feminist Legal Conference
Here at L&H, we strive to feed our mind, bodies, and souls.  As we do this work, we definitely stay engaged with the academy and research connected to our vision and movement. On March 5th and 6th, L&H attended the 7th Annual Feminist Legal Conference at the University of Baltimore School of Law.  The conference opened with a workshop on advocacy in the reproductive justice movement.  On Friday, scholars, practitioners, and activists presented papers discussing such topics as the legality of contraception coverage under the Affordable Care Act, the conflicting interest of employers and employees in accessing comprehensive health care, and the health consequences of gendered roles.  Whew!  L&H walked away feeling inspired, challenged, and impacted by the discussion and presentations.  Most of all, we felt moved to incorporate feminist legal theory as a tool for improving the health of individuals, communities, and society.

WIN Network
L&H is dedicated to reaching all women exactly where they are to Dream Plan Do.  Over the past few months, L&H has been engaged with the Women Inspired Neighborhood (WIN) Network working with their staff and speaking at their local conferences.  On February 28, L&H founder Yodit gave the keynote address, 7 Steps to Unleash Your Fabulous-ness, at the WIN Network FYI Summit: Osborn.  L&H team member Celeste will be presenting Becoming the Best YOU sessions at the upcoming WIN Network FYI Summit: Brightmoor on March 21.

Elevate Blog
Have you ever met someone that lingers on your mind? L&H team member Celeste explored this topic, as well as, notions of inner and outer beauty, self-confidence, and self-awareness in a recent blog post, â€œUnforgettable”, featured on the Elevate Gen Y website.  Check it out during your lunch break and head to our Facebook page to tell us what you think! You can find the post on the
Elevate website.
Biz Spotlight: Rebel Nell
Every month, we will celebrate women-centric businesses that embody the L&H "Dream. Plan. Do." model.  This month, we are spotlighting Detroit-based Rebel Nell â€” "Defiant Jewelry with a Purpose”.  Oh, and Rebel Nell is a not just a jewelry company. Their mission is to " employ disadvantaged women in Detroit, educate them on business and life skills and empower them to transition to an independent life.”  But wait, there’s more.  The jewelry is made from repurposed broken graffiti pieces found on the ground.  

Rebel Nell was founded in 2013 by Detroiters Amy Peterson and Diana Russell.  Amy has long been creating jewelry with a social justice mission and with Diana’s skill set in fashion merchandising, this advocacy-based business was born.  Check out their merchandise and support their awesome cause at
Rebel Nell.  
Resources:
Check out Frugal -N- Phenonenal.  Founder Aisha Taylor’s mission is to stop women from letting their bank account and stuff define who they are as a person and works to change their mindset and achieve financial freedom. http://www.fnphenomenal.com/

 
Copyright © 2014 Lips & Hips, LLC, All rights reserved.


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