Celebrating Somali Week in the Twin Cities!

Somali Week Celebrations 2021 📸 Courtesy Somali TV Minnesota

This week’s edition covers stories from June 23rd to June 29th, 2022.

Today’s issue is 900 words, a 4.5-minute read.

We’re talking about Somali Independence Day, land gifted to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, a new Latina Executive Director, and how abortion bans are a BIPOC issue.

Local News:

The Twin Cities celebrate Somali Independence day during this year’s Somali week! This year marks the festival’s eighth year of honoring an influential day in Somali culture. The day celebrated as Somali Independence day, July 1st, represents the union of British and Italian Somaliland in 1960. Minneapolis’ Somali Week will mark celebrations steeped in remembrance and Somali joy, a tradition that we hope will be a part of the Twin Cities for many years to come! Events will span from July 2nd to July 17th and highlight history and a look into the future, as two of the highlighted events are for celebrating women and helping to strengthen Somali professional connections. 

Minnesota receives hundreds of acres of land near the St. Croix river. The Trust for Public Land, a non-profit organization, purchased the land from Xcel Energy and then gifted it to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), where it will become a part of the Chengwatana State Forest. The DNR will now preserve nearly 700 acres of land. Their acquisition is considered a massive win for environmentalists, as preserving the land will contribute to a healthier environment and cleaner water in the St. Croix. 


Ambar Cristina Hanson (right) with current Executive Director of Mortenson Family Foundation, Donna Dalton (left). 📸 Mortenson Family Foundation

Minnesota Latina, Ambar Cristina Hanson, has accepted the role of Executive Director of Mortenson Family Foundation. Mortenson Family Foundation supports organizations involved with education, hunger, youth development, and more. Its mission is to “build partnerships to strengthen community-driven approaches that advance equity, opportunity, and sustainable systems.” Since joining the Foundation over three years ago as a Community Relationship Officer, Ambar has worked to “advance equity in the program by increasing the percentage of grants to organizations led by and for communities and organizations led by BIPOC leaders.”

You’ve probably heard the devastating news that the Supreme Court has officially overturned Roe v. Wade. We foresaw this coming, but many people are at risk now that the ruling is official. Why is this a BIPOC issue? 

“There’s some estimates that say that we can expect a 21 percent increase [nationally] in pregnancy-related deaths for all populations,” said Asha Hassan, a reproductive health researcher with the U of Minnesota’s Center for Antiracism Research for Health Equity. “And for Black folks, we can expect to see up to a 33 percent increase, which is, of course, significantly worse.”

We touched on this topic before. Click here to read more on the complicated history of Roe v. Wade, the impact of banning healthcare, and what you can do. 

For updates on abortion access in your state, click here.

Bottom of the News:

Members of the Urban Bird Collective 📸 Monica Bryand |  Sahan Journal 

The Urban Bird Collective, a birdwatching group formed by Monica Bryant in 2018, is a safe space for BIPOC and LGBTQ birdersThe collective, with over 450 Facebook followers, encourages people of diverse backgrounds to get involved in the pastime while helping with things like bird counting efforts in nature reserves. You can get involved with the group on their Facebook page!

About NewPrensa

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