Barbershop Stories Interested in changing the narrative? Between February and May 2022 Changing Our Lives is looking for 10 Black men that live or work in Sandwell to work alongside us to tell their stories. These stories will help pave the way for young Black boys and men to relate and aspire to. Since 2013, the Black Lives Matter movement has been fighting against the oppression of the Black community. Following the murder of George Floyd in the US on 25th May 2020 the world sat up and conversations have been taking place all over the world. By sharing the real stories and experiences of local Black men with the younger generation, and offering them more positive male role models, the project aims to strengthen a positive sense of their identity. These stories will be written from the men’s perspective - challenging the negative stereotypes too often portrayed and the myths and stigma that Black men have had imposed upon them by society. We will record the stories digitally both in book form and a series of podcasts or short videos. We will also use photography to showcase and celebrate the success of the 10 men selected and work with local spaces to launch and exhibit the work. The men’s stories will be archived in Sandwell Archives and the Black Cultural Archives in Brixton, London. We will publicise the stories via social media and use this to start conversations and change the narrative. If this sounds like something you or someone you know would like to get involved with, we’d love to hear from you! Please email Lucy Dunstan at [email protected] or call 07460 498888 to register your interest. Free anti-racism workshops for Sandwell schools and youth groups: In schools and youth groups across the borough, we will facilitate workshops, assemblies and mini-events to young people around the age group of 13 - 14. These sessions will be led by local Black men who will share their stories and experiences, offering young Black boys positive male role models through strengthening a positive sense of their identity, whilst challenging the negative stereotypes that exist in wider society. We will work with you to deliver these sessions in a way that best suits. Sessions will be secured on a first-come-first-served-basis. Please email Georgia Wilkinson at [email protected] or call 07534 000979 to register your interest.