When you don’t know what to say

I’ve had a post sitting here in draft since February. And every now and then I would come back to it to try and write something, to connect with readers, to let them know what’s happening in my world and share some stories. But the time never felt right. First there were bushfires devastating my country. Then the world shutdown with a pandemic. And now the world is cracking to the chants of “Black Lives Matter” as millions cry out with understandably long-held sadness and outrage.

It’s been hard to write, hard to share, hard to breathe this year. But what is most important in all of this, is knowing that – especially now – I’m not the focus here. I am white, I live in a first world country, I have a job and a roof over my head. I am fortunate beyond comprehension of millions of others in the world, and I know this. My home was not destroyed by bushfires. I did not lose my job in the lockdown. And I am not persecuted every day for the colour of my skin. What I can do in these times, though, is be an ally. To stand up for those who can’t, and help hold them up.

So you better bloody well believe that Black Lives Matter. They always have. They always will. And they deserve better.

If you are in America, President Barack Obama’s website has a fantastic collation of resources for information, as well as suggestions for where you can make financial donations if you are able to, to help make a change for black people in your country – https://www.obama.org/anguish-and-action/

In Australia, it is our Indigenous people who experience these same discriminations every day, and they too deserve and need our support. GoFundMe has set up a centralised hub for the Black Lives Matter movement in Australia, which lists verified GoFundMe campaigns to support Aboriginal Australians – https://au.gofundme.com/c/act/black-lives-matter-australia [edit – this link seems to be broken at the moment. I’ll keep an eye out for a new link and will post ASAP. Edit 2 – link is fixed again.]

If you are not in a position to contribute financially you can still show your support by sharing useful information, and showing your support with your words and your actions. And most of all by listening to our black brothers and sisters.

COVID-19 is still not over yet either, and there are many vulnerable people who are still struggling financially under the impact this virus has had on our world. If you’re in Australia, consider making a donation to FoodBank – https://www.foodbank.org.au/ .

It is hard to know what to say and what to do in times like this… all we can do is our best and show our love and support.

Please be safe, everyone.


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