Celebrate Black History Month at CHS

Black History Month takes place every October. It's a time to celebrate, educate and talk about the experience of Black people in the UK. 

Croydon Health Services promotes equality and inclusion for all of our staff and we are delighted to share the programme of events and activities for all to enjoy over the coming month.  

Welcome to Black History Month

Introduction by Leila Howe, co-chair of the CHS BAME Network

The CHS BAME Network and EDI Team would like to welcome you to join in our Black History celebrations during the month of October. 
 
Black History Month is the time when the contributions made by people of African descent are acknowledged and celebrated nationally and internationally.  
 
For CHS, this is a first.  We have been able to organise a series of events with the full support of the Executive team. We are grateful for their willingness to listen and for leadership shown by them to acknowledge and address racial inequality within our structures.  We have also collaborated with our colleagues in the Croydon BME Forum and Croydon Council.

Read more here
 
 

What's on

1 - 31 October black history month logo

Let's talk about race: our stories - a film

What are your experiences of race in the UK? What has been your experience as a Black person in the NHS? Just two of the questions we asked three CHS colleagues for our short film for Black History Month. It’s an insight into the different experiences black people have both in and out of work and how resilience is key to our success. Find it on the CHS website, social media feeds and YouTube channel later today.

Health icons exhibition

Be inspired by our month-long celebration of Black health heroes from yesteryear. Black people have contributed immensely to health systems across the globe, all important individuals who have received little recognition but made a big difference. Find it in the main reception at CUH.

Black History Month CUH library display

Head up to the library at CUH to see our specially commissioned Black History Month collection. You’ll have the opportunity to see and borrow from a range of books, both fiction and non-fiction, and get ideas for further reading.

12 - 30 October

What does Black History Month mean to you? - photo collection

Black History Month means different things to different people. Come and see what it means to some of our CHS colleagues, in a photo collection being displayed in the Yellow Bridge in CUH.

13 October

Let's talk about race - a panel discussion 

This year has been one like no other, with COVID-19 and it’s effects on the Black community hitting headline news. Add this to the heightened global awareness of racial inequalities following the events in America, there is a lot to talk about at our first ever ‘Let’s Talk About Race’ panel discussion. We are delighted to be joined by John Barnes, former Liverpool and England footballer and TV pundit; Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, Baby Blue, organiser of the recent Black Lives Matters protests, and our very own NED Paulette Lewis, and BAME Network co-chair Jen Sarsby. This will be an unmissable event so make sure you tune into our Facebook page to watch the livestream from 7pm.

20 October

Black History Month quiz night

Get together with your colleagues or friends, and test your knowledge at this fun, yet educational Black History Month quiz. Hosted by CHS, Croydon Council, and the Croydon BAME Forum

22 October

BAME book club launch

A chance for you to join colleagues to read and discuss a chosen book by a BAME author each month. For Black History Month the club will enjoy and discuss Girl, Woman, Other, the award winning novel by Bernadine Evaristo.
The numbers for this club will be limited but you are invited to create your own club with colleagues and friends and enjoy the book at your leisure.
Contact the BAME Network at ch-tr.bamecroydon@nhs.net for more information about how to be part of the club / set up your own club.

For further details of other exciting events taking place across Croydon you can visit the Croydon BME Forum website

Welcome to Black History Month - contd...

...Black History takes on greater significance this year globally, nationally and locally as, the representation and treatment of Black people in society and in history, has been brought to public attention by the Back Lives Matter Movement.  We have been asked to re-examine the legacy of Britain’s history of slavery and colonialism.
 
The impact of the Covid pandemic on minority communities has also highlighted racial and health inequalities that need to be acknowledged and addressed.  The impact of these has changed the debate within NHS. The Peoples Plan has emphasised the importance of prioritizing diversity and the urgent need to address inequality within the NHS for patients and staff.
 
We have chosen as our theme ‘Let’s talk about Race’, we know this is, at times, difficult for us in CHS as we are reluctant to acknowledge difference -  to accept that we are not all the same. The ‘one size fits all approach’ is not always relevant to our experiences and history and may require a nuanced approach to ensure that we do not feel excluded.  
 
We hope that our programme, which contains events that are both serious and fun, will stimulate discussion, inform and educate. We want all staff and all others to join us in a celebration of our diversity and hope that a better understanding of the history and contribution made by black staff to the NHS will help to create a culture of inclusion.
 
One of the highlights is our panel discussion entitled ‘Let’s Talk About Race’ Race’ our eminent panelists include: John Barnes, Dame Elizabeth Anionwu, Baby Blue, Jen Sarsby and Paulette Lewis will discuss their experience of overcoming barriers to achieve success.

Leila