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our commitment

Black Women for Wellness is committed to advancing the health and well-being of Black women & girls through education, empowerment, and advocacy.

Our goal is to expand healthcare access, reduce toxic hair care chemicals that are prevalent in our community, and build political advocacy in California and beyond.

We believe that our community and allies have tremendous strength and wisdom to offer. We also believe that we already possess the solutions, resources, and responsibility to create the shifts and changes that are required to improve our health status.

In order to achieve our community’s survival and growth, we are committed to empowering black women to develop their own personal power, hold leaders accountable, support them, and contribute to the global community’s survival and growth.

our story

Black Women for Wellness started as a group of six women who were concerned with the health and well-being of black  babies and teamed up with the Birthing Project as “sisterfriends” in 1994 to implement the Shangazi Program.

This grassroots program dedicated its’ time and mission to matching pregnant women with “sisterfriends” mentors who  coached expecting mothers throughout their pregnancy until the child was at least a year old.

These mentorship  experiences provided support systems to combat infant and maternal mortality rates. Within 4 years of implementation,  BWW began moving upstream to address systems and political policy by becoming a California 501 (c) (3) nonprofit in 1997.

Black Women for Wellness celebrated our 20th anniversary in 2017, having grown from a volunteer group of  women to a community institution.

Our budget has grown at a steady pace where we are now close to having an annual  budget of approximately $1,900,000.00.  

BWW Our Story
Black Women for Wellness Food Distribution Event

communities served

BWW primarily works in Los Angeles County Service Planning Area 6 (SPA 6) where over one million or 10% of all L.A. County residents live.

  • SPA 6 has the largest number of African Americans (27.4%) in L.A. County (Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, 2016)
  • 51.2% of SPA 6 residents are females, 98% of which are women of color  (Walter R. McDonald & Associates, Inc, 2006). 

Women residing in SPA 6 are disproportionately impacted by the health  disparities that affect our community for example,

  • Women in SPA 6 have the highest rates of overweight (33.4%) and obesity (34.1%)
  • Second highest rates of no regular source of care (24.1%) and uninsured (31.9%) in L.A. County (L.A.C Office of Women’s Health, 2007).

Through BWW various programming, ages served are youth (12 – 17),  young adults (18 – 24), adults (25 – 65) and seniors (65+). 

“It’s not about supplication, it’s about power. It’s not about asking, it’s about demanding. It’s not about convincing those who are currently in power, it’s about changing the very face of power itself.”

The Power of the Sisters, Essence Magazine August 2015