By Lauren Poteat, NNPA Washington Correspondent
During the height of the 48th Annual Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), members of the International Black Women’s Public Policy Institute (IBWPPI), gave way to their 10th Annual Gala and Policy Forum, centered around ‘Leadership in a Global Black Women’s Movement.’
Focused on the need for women to support other women, the CBC events brought together global thinkers and advocates for the movement of Black women into global citizenship, spearheaded by IBWPPI Co-Founder/President, Barbara A. Perkins.
“The International Black Women’s Public Policy Institute takes pride in educating and training Black women on how to take control of their futures,” Perkins said. “We are the only organization focused solely on policies that are the priority of Black Women and are advocates for Black women and girls globally through acts of kindness and public policy, that are simple, yet bold and compelling.”
As part of the anniversary panel, comprised of the Hon. Paula A. Cox, the former Premier of Bermuda, Her Excellency Audrey P. Marks, the Ambassador of Jamaica to the U.S., the Hon. Katherine Forbes-Smith the Senate President of the Bahamas, Princess Dr. Moradeun Ogunlana of Nigeria, the CEO of Innovative Global Consulting and Dr. Julianne Malveaux, the founder and president of Economic Education, dynamic women set the stage with dialogue centered around the unique experiences and issues that their individual countries faced when it came to women in leadership—a discussion right on que with IBWPPI’s main mission.
“Our work stretches far beyond our backyards,” Perkins said. “Our mission is to convene hearings and conversations that evaluate the impact of current public policy and initiate new policies that address major threats to the well-being of Black women, their families and communities. We are a membership driven organization with a seat at the table for all those who believe as we do, that it is our duty to help make life better for others.”
Adamant about women’s rights, Perkins further stated that her vision for the organization has and will be to push people forward—over the next 10 years.
Tackling human trafficking with legislative change, economic security, health and wellness, education, while also sponsoring forums, town halls, workshops and events that raise awareness and funds for victims in need of support—IBWPPI continues to challenge the status quo and to establish itself as a premiere institution for Black women.
“Our goal is to promote Acts of Kindness as the key to good public policy,” Perkins stated. “We use gender diplomacy to engage in critical dialogue and to convene leadership groups at home and abroad. This model works as we begin to chart the next 10 years while training the next generation of international leaders through our Young Ambassadors Program.”
Founded in 2009, inspired by the legacy of Dr. Dorothy I. Height, Chair Emeritus, National Council of Negro Women, IBWPPI currently consist of partners in North America, Bahamas, Belize, Bermuda, Cuba, Haiti and Ghana Africa.
Seeking to expand representation, every year these women convene in a different country during the month of March, while also supporting various missions including: 500 pairs of work-boots and rain-boots for communities in Haiti, Ghana and the Bahamas in the aftermath of natural disasters, promoting clean water in Haiti, and establishing a Reading Room Initiative in each country, where individuals convene IBWPPI Work.
To learn more about IBWPPI or how to become a member, visit: IBWPPI Membership