their country by band- Commissioner for Callahan explained that black ing together, despite Puerto Rico; and women are dealing with mental and religious differences, representatives from physical health issues that are pre- to end a cruel war and Gold Level Sponsors, ventable at a disproportionate rate unconscionable re- Jenny Craig Corpo- due to the variety of circumstances gime under Dr. Charles ration and the Delta that make up the unique struggle Taylor. A fi Research and Educa- of black women. A few of these cir- tting intro- duction to the confer- tional Foundation. cumstances, according to Callahan, ence, “Pray the Devil Following an of- include: the mental and emotional Back to Hell” provided fi stress caused by racism, sexism, cial introduction by evidence that wom- Soror Fudge, Dr. Mi- economic insecurity, responsibili- en with voices can chelle Callahan, psy- ties of caregiving, single parent led change history and al- chologist and author, households, neighborhood violence ter the course of a na- presented the key- and lack of social support. tion when they work note address for the “In order to break the silence and collaboratively for the conference. Callahan unload this baggage we’ve been car- future of their children Soror Tara Canady Doss, grand- spoke of the secrets rying around, we have to get help,” and their country. daughter of 18th National President held by women of she said. “And before we’ll ever be During the Wel- Hortense Golden Canady, gives color, the impact able to see that, we really have to get come Reception later remarks on behalf of the Canady they have on individ- rid of all of these things and these that evening, con- family during the Opening Session uals and families, the stigmas that we place on ourselves ference attendees of the conference named in her obstacles they place for not being perfect.” and presenters were grandmother’s honor. in their paths, and Callahan’s message was followed treated to a night of PHOTO BY SHARON FARMER the need to unlock by a panel facilitated by Dr. Johnnetta food, fellowship and secrets in families B. Cole, director of the Smithsonian dancing. Music was provided by a lo- and communities. Callahan empha- Museum of African Art. The panel, cal salsa band. Over an hour of rum sized that requests for help are not themed “Culture of Silence in Health pouring was provided courtesy of signs of weakness, but strength. and Wellness, Race and Gender, and Rums of Puerto Rico. “We have an epic of a strong Generational Wealth,” featured lead- The conference offi black woman,” said Callahan. “Our ers in the respective fi elds, including: cially opened with General Session One on Friday, culture promotes this toughness and The Honorable Joycelyn Elders, for- April 13 with a welcome by Soror Mc- this self-sacrifi mer U.S. Surgeon General; Dr. Beverly ce of black women. We Daniel, followed by greetings from can’t successfully take care of other Guy Sheftall, founding director of the National President Cynthia M. A. But- people until we’ve learned how to Women’s Resource Center; and Soror ler-McIntyre. successfully take care of ourselves.” Carla Harris, author and managing di- “As women of color, we have to learn to embrace the role of a woman who is as committed to her own well- being as she is to that of ev- eryone else; of a woman who refuses to suffer in silence any longer,” said Soror Butler- McIntyre during her greeting to conference participants. “We have come together as women of color—women who have carried the weight of our families and our communities on our shoulders—commit- ted to ‘Breaking the Culture of Silence.’” Remarks were also given by Soror Tara Canady Doss, granddaughter of Hortense Golden Canady; The Hon- Hortense Golden Canady International Women’s Conference participants party and listen to live orable Pedro Pierluisi, U.S. music at the Welcome Reception. PHOTO BY SHARON FARMER 10 ▲ DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, INC.
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