Who We Are
Black Girls Smile has been recognized as one of the leading organizations focusing on Black women and girls' mental wellness.
Black Girls Smile Inc. was founded in 2012 with the mission to empower the mental health and well-being of young Black women and girls through culturally and gender-responsive educational programming, support initiatives, and resource connections.
Since our inception, BGS has grown to support over 10,000 Black women and girls nationally through our mental health literacy programming, intersectionality workshops, and therapy scholarship program.
BGS is uniquely led by a staff of all Black women, volunteer team, and Board. BGS continues to strategically and responsively expand our programming and initiatives to meet the mental health needs of black women and girls.
We are dedicated to encouraging positive mental health education, resources, and support geared toward young Black women and girls.
We envision a society that focuses on ensuring all young Black women and girls receive the resources and support necessary to lead mentally healthy lives.
We are focused on the liberation and wellness of ALL Black girls and women. Therefore, we work with those actively working against misogynoir in all its manifestations. This includes the respect of people’s pronouns, the addressing of systemic racism and misogyny, etc.
Our community is not a monolith. Working with the BGS community involves working closely with people with various identities encompassing the vastness of experiences related to religion, immigrant backgrounds, sexuality, gender expression, socioeconomic levels, regional backgrounds, and experiences with trauma. We ask that you keep this diversity in mind when connecting with the community and designing programming.
We value the vast experiences of those in BGS community which includes the way they have navigated through a society drenched in systemic injustices. We believe it is a privilege to work with and on behalf of Black girls and women. And that means we uplift narratives about them with care and do not engage in a culture of trauma porn and exploitation.
We approach our work from an asset-focused lens and one that values the concept of abundance. Too often, organizations and resources for Black girls and women are asked to only speak about the negative experiences we have, to downplay our gifts and brilliance and are told to believe that we only deserve the bare-minimum. And we believe that and our community deserves more than that. Thus, we ask that those we work with also seek to create space for the BGS community to dream.