February is Black History Month in Canada, a time dedicated to recognizing the contributions, achievements, and experiences of Black people from coast to coast to coast.
The 2024 Black History Month theme is “Black Excellence: A Heritage to Celebrate; a Future to Build.” This theme presents an opportunity to reflect on and celebrate the distinct contributions of Black people to Canadian society—often made while overcoming discrimination, racism, or other unjust barriers—and to look forward to the future ways they will shape an increasingly diverse Canada.
There are several ways the UWinnipeg community can participate in Black History Month around campus, across the city, and online.
Discover library and archive collections
The UWinnipeg library and archives are great starting points for more information on topics related to slavery, colonialism, war, and identity in a variety of contexts. Explore reading guides on topics such as Black Lives Matter, Colonization, and Race and Racialization. The archives’ BIPOC Collections include materials like the Congress of Black Women of Manitoba Inc. fonds—an extensive collection of records and history of Black women in Manitoba.
While at the library, be sure to also check out the special Black History Month display from February 1 to 18. The library has also compiled a special Black History Month reading list to guide further learning and discovery.
Attend a Black History Month event
The University of Winnipeg Student Association’s BIPoC Lounge is planning a weeklong series of Black History Month events, beginning Monday, February 26. Each day will focus on a different aspect of Black culture, such as food, art, and fashion. A gaming tournament, workout training session, movie night, and professional seminar are also planned, culminating in a Black Excellence Gala on Friday, March 1. For more information, including times and locations, keep an eye on the BIPoC Lounge website, Facebook, and Instagram.
Several events are also planned around Winnipeg. A special Black History Manitoba edition of First Fridays in the Exchange takes place Friday, February 2 from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Manitoba Museum (190 Rupert Avenue). Shop the vendor market and enjoy live music and entertainment. Admission is free. If you can’t make it to the vendor market, Black Owned Manitoba maintains a directory of local businesses run by Black entrepreneurs.
The Black Manitobans Chamber of Commerce and UWinnipeg’s Faculty of Business and Economics have partnered for a special event on Wednesday, February 28. “Being Black on the Prairies” is a candid talk and Q&A about race and racism in the workplace. Host Jennifer Trotman, UWinnipeg’s Director of Campus Living, will be in conversation with five panelists. This event begins at 4 p.m. in Room 3BC55 in UWinnipeg’s Buhler Centre. A free reception will follow. Advance registration is appreciated.
Black History Manitoba also maintains a comprehensive Black History Month events calendar. Enjoy a free movie night on February 10, a history lesson and family day on February 19, and cooking classes on February 22 and 28. View the calendar for a full list of events.
Learn and share online
The Government of Canada Black History Month website is a great place to learn about how Black History Month came to be recognized in Canada, and how notable Black Canadians helped shape Canada. Use the hashtag #BHM2024 when posting on your favourite social media platforms about what you find inspiring about Black History Month.
Find resources on the BIPoC Lounge page
The BIPoC Lounge has prepared a list of Black History Month resources. Located on the concourse level of the Bulman Student Centre in Room 0R14, the BIPoC Lounge is a dedicated space for students who are Black, Indigenous, or People of Colour to gather, learn, and find community through shared lived experiences. The Lounge is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Contact the BIPoC Lounge Coordinator or visit the UWSA General Office to get access.