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drINK Café: Creating Brave Spaces Through Shared Spaces


Born in Kenya to Nigerian and Kenyan parents, Fellow Valerie Ntinu is a recent MA graduate in Media, Culture and Society. Throughout her academic background, she has specialized on Black Womxn’s experiences and the Black Diaspora.

From her own experience as a Black womxn navigating predominant spaces, Valerie sought to create a virtual event addressing the burden placed on Black womxn. The goal of her Action Project was to experience the double burden of racism and misogyny confronting Black womxn and non-binary individuals. For Valerie, this was an opportunity to provide participants with a rare brave space to express their grievances.

Project development
In order to make this event possible, she collaborated with two separate organizations that catered to her audience of choice – Association for black artists and Netherlands Black Women. With her partnerships, she was able to leverage contacts and existing social media presence to bring participants to her sessions. As it was a virtual artistic project, Valerie required painting canvases and paint. Resources she was able to get at the local store.

Expectations, challenges & future ambitions
Prior to her inaugural session, Valerie was nervous the members would be hesitant to share their experiences. She was pleasantly surprised when the participants were all forthcoming and involved. Throughout her experience, she would have preferred carrying out this event in person rather than doing it online. She recommends anyone pursuing similar projects to give themselves enough time to concretize their envisioned plans.

Valerie hopes to host another session in the near future.