Honda Associates Celebrate Black History Month

For Black History Month this year, the African American Resource Collaborative of Honda (AARCH) Business Resource Group (BRG) worked across its chapters at Honda facilities in Alabama, Indiana, Ohio and South Carolina to host a virtual speaker series and create a weekly newsletter for associates.

A different AARCH chapter hosted the speaker series each week and focused on topics of importance to the BRG and its members.

“Our overall goal was to share information about diversity and topics such as mental health, finances and community from an African American perspective,” shared Quentin Gipson, Honda Development & Manufacturing of America associate and Alabama Auto Plant’s (AAP) AARCH chair.

AARCH brought in outside speakers for each virtual event, including Anthony Mason from the Indianapolis Urban League, Jevon Collins from The King Arts Complex in Columbus, Ohio, and Dr. Vanessa Anderson, a licensed mental health professional who lives near the Alabama Auto Plant.   

Gipson says AARCH received positive feedback from the session with Anderson, hosted by AAP. More than 20 associates were able to hear Anderson speak in person at AAP, while more than 300 associates tuned into the session virtually.

Nationwide, nearly 50 million, or 19.86%, of American adults are living with a mental health condition. According to Anderson, with a disparity in mental healthcare for the African American community, it is important to be aware of potential symptoms.

Samira Johnson, Communications chair for AARCH in Ohio, worked with all AARCH chapters to develop and produce the weekly newsletters during Black History Month. “The newsletter was designed to get our members excited about each event in the speaker series, share facts about Black History Month and promote Black-owned businesses,” she said. “We also included recipes from Black culture.”

AAP’s AARCH chapter also participated in volunteering for the Anniston Museum’s Black Heritage Festival, one of Northeast Alabama’s oldest continuing Black History Month celebrations. Volunteers from AAP greeted and handed out wristbands to attendees, as well as helped direct traffic for the festival. “We missed the last two festivals due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but this is an activity we typically do every year,” Gipson explained. “It’s an honor to be involved and assist in making the event happen.”

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