By Kennedy Wells
The Collegiate 100 Black Men’s club (C100) hosted the “Black Men Love Black Women: C100 Women’s Appreciation Day” in Xavier’s University Center on Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 12 p.m. This event was a way to “show the women of Xavier how much we cherish, respect, and admire our Black Women,” according to the organization.
The club’s members passed out butterfly masks, lip gloss, and notes to women in the UC. To pull off an event of this size, C100 members prepared days in advance. They personalized each note with a drawing and kind words. They also put up posters showing appreciation for black women in the different residence halls. Club members said that they saw the treatment of black women by society and that they felt an obligation to take action.
“We wanted to take a day out to show our appreciation for the women across campus. We wanted to let them know that we see them and that we are rooting for them,” said Steven Bynum, a sophomore Public Health Sciences, pre-med major, and a member of C100.
Students who attended this event noted that in society, black women are often underestimated, devalued, and disrespected. They said that it is easy for a black woman to lose confidence and doubt herself, especially if there is no one there to support her.
“It is important for black women specifically to feel appreciated because we live in a world where black women are targeted to specifically feel like they are not uplifted or embraced,” said Tyree Johnson, a junior from Chicago, IL and member of C100.
The organizers were pleased to see that the Black women of Xavier who attended the event left feeling inspired and joyful. They said they felt appreciated and seen by the men of Xavier. Many of the women who attended said they felt that this event was more important than any of the organizers had realized when they planned it.
“The gifts were extremely thoughtful and I felt the love that the men have for black women. It was nice to know that there is someone in our corner supporting us and looking out for us,” said Raven Richardson, a sophomore psychology major here at Xavier.
Though appreciating black women is a thing they are proud of, it is not the only thing the C100 do on campus. C100 is a community service organization here on campus that allows its members to do service around their community in order to contribute to the well-being of the community and those that live in it.
“It is a great experience. It is an experience for both young men and women to be able to connect, communicate, and network with different types of people in New Orleans and throughout the nation,” Johnson said.
Since black women are members of the community that the C100 serves, the members see another day like this one as necessary. They said that appreciating black women is a thing that should be done all the time, not just on special occasions.
“I would love to do another event like this to show our appreciation for the people around us and just to show that we understand and that we actually want to uplift black women,” Bynum said.