Black Girl Magic Educational Services Inc. will host “Black Girl Magic Saturdays” at the Goodman Community Center Ironworks on Saturday, Feb. 26, noon-3 p.m., where they will celebrate Black History Month with a soul food lunch catered by Melly Mel’s and by creating a custom painting with Simone Lawrence.
Black Girl Magic Educational Services Inc. (BGMES) Founder and Executive Director Rosa Thompson said that they kept Black Girl Magic Saturdays going monthly for girls in 4th-8th grade because they are important to the girls and they had a lot of fun.
“As we were wrapping up the summer, we did an event every month, we just realized that we didn’t really want it to end,” said Thompson. “We wanted to figure out a way to just keep in touch with these girls and have something for them to do. We’re still in the pandemic, even though we’re back in school. We just wanted to continue the joy that we had during the summer throughout the school year. We decided that we would host a monthly event. And we decided to call it Black Girl Magic Saturdays. That’s really what it is. And honestly, it’s really fun.”
The goal of BGMES is to celebrate and inspire intelligent Black girls in Madison. Thompson is a graduate of the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD), Madison East in particular, and understands the importance of the safe space BGMES provides. Thompson hopes girls engaged in the programming enjoy themselves and feel supported.
“We hope the girls meet new friends and explore new interests,” said Thompson. “And just be in an environment with girls who look like them. And with Black women who support them so that they can feel that support from people who they may have just met that day, but know that we are here for them. This is a safe space, you can come every month.
“We’ve started doing enrichment events as well. We are providing tickets to UW women’s basketball games. We’re taking girls to see Alvin Ailey in March,” she adds. “We just are trying to create lots of opportunities for different groups of girls just to come together, explore new interests and get to know each other … to be in community with each other, and just have fun and learn.”
Thompson and the team at BGMES have created a Youth Advisory Board, where girls create and plan their own programming and events. Thompson wants girls to create the environment and events they want to see and to take leadership roles where they can.
“We’re very excited that we’re becoming more and more youth-led,” said Thompson. “Because we can put together pretty much anything that the girls have in mind. We have a project going for April that the girls want to do, and we’re trying to figure out how to make it work. We just want to make sure that our programming is by the girls and for the girls.”
Sign up is required for Black Girl Magic Saturdays and space is limited to 50 girls. Register here. For more information about Black Girl Magic Saturdays and more programming from Black Girl Magic Educational Services Inc., click here.