This article was published by the Carolina Panorama on May 4, 2017. The original article can be found at https://www.carolinapanorama.com/news/local/black-women-partners-with-the-blossoms-at-carver-lyon-school/article_23a3e61c-3077-11e7-9b81-83ddd6f0a020.html
BLOSSOMS is a leadership program for fourth and fifth grade girls at Carver-Lyon Elementary School. The vision for the program is to provide the students with the social, emotional, behavioral and moral support they need to blossom into leaders, productive young ladies and academically successful students.
Its founder and advisor, Mrs. Karlicha Gunter-Best, recently initiated a collaborative partnership with the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., Columbia (SC) Chapter. The goal of the collaboration is to enable the coalition to contribute and pour into the development of the young BLOSSOMS’ skills in their development of leadership, self esteem, self motivation, friendship and the enhancement of social etiquette and personal hygiene, etc.
Mrs. Gunter-Best’s was also aware and extremely concerned that many of her BLOSSOMS did not have the access nor the resources for the basic personal hygiene items necessary to cultivate and maintain a positive self-image to properly care for their bodies. To meet and satisfy this deficiency, the 100 Black Women prepared packaged items in age appropriate handbags/ pocketbooks to further promote the blossoming transition of these young ladies. At a recent meeting at Carver-Lyons Elementary School, the 100 Black Women met with the BLOSSOMS and presented each young lady with a beautiful handbag/pocketbook filled with personal hygiene items and extra goodies for use during the upcoming summer recess. The coalition looks forward to additional mentoring with BLOSSOMS in the Fall.
Present at the BLOSSOMS presentation were Carver-Lyons staff and members of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, including Mary Miller McClellan, Dr. Thrisha Shiver, Dr. Anita Carman, Dr. Frances Ashe-Goins and Germaine Middleton-Rasberry.
The National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc., Columbia (SC) Chapter was chartered in 2014 to advocate and empower women and girls of African-American descent in leadership and gender equality in health, education and economic empowerment. The Columbia Chapter initially researched the city’s demographics to determine the community’s critical service areas needs for its advocacy programs for women and girls. It has subsequently provided numerous advocacy and empowerment opportunities that have benefited many of its constituents of the Midlands.
The Columbia Chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women, Inc. is a chapter of the national organization that began in New York City in 1970 in an effort to continue the successful implementation of socio-economic and political strategies that began in the mid-1960s. The NCBW consists of thousands of progressive women of African descent that represent 63 chapters in 25 states and the District of Columbia and whose commitment to gender equity and socioeconomic advancement drives meaningful change to benefit women of color.