For several years, I have celebrated “Financial Literacy Month.” In fact, I find myself looking forward to April not only due to it being the month when I celebrate my first time speaking at the United Nations as well as celebrating “Queen Quet Week” which encompasses several of my Queen Quet Days, but also because it is when I pay homage to Tunis Campbell and my Gullah/Geechee land owning ancestors. Although some of my ancestors may not have been literate, they had wisdom, knowledge and understanding when it came to owning property and leaving it to their heirs. Tenk GAWD fa de ancestas!
This year, I found myself spending April the way I spent December, January, February and March-fighting to protect the land of my direct ancestors and the Cultural Protection Overlay District of that land on my beloved historic St. Helena Island, SC in the Gullah/Geechee Nation. I often thought of the trials and tribulations that Tunis Campbell went through as he fought to keep hold of the Black Gullah/Geechee township that he helped to form on the Georgia coast. Many times, I shook my head when I thought of having the parallel experience over a century later. Yet, I refuse not to continue to stand! All year I have been blessed to have my home folks of St. Helena and throughout the Gullah/Geechee Nation standing with me.
When I get a chance to sit, I open books to read about how to increase wealth in order to further the inheritance that my ancestors blessed me and my family with. I especially invest in books about financial literacy during April each year. As I expand my library and absorb the information, I expand my mind. In order to expand the number of Black people that are financially literate, I air broadcast on Gullah/Geechee Riddim Radio and Gullah/Geechee TV (GGTV) each April. For the first time, I was able to also provide a live presentation on my home island. I focused on “Building Black Family Wealth” and have heard nothing but positive responses since that wonderful evening at New Life Deliverance Temple.
To have a new life, I believe we have to continue to renew our minds and transform the things that we do for the better for not only ourselves, but for our future generations. I often say, “A wise man or woman will leave an inheritance to his or her children’s children.” However, Proverbs 13:22a (KJV) actually reads: “A good man leaveth an inheritance to his children’s children.” I pray that the Black family members that view my presentation on Gullah/Geechee TV will be both good and wise.
I pray that my good and wise ancestors will be able to rest once they see that we do not take lightly the sacrifices that they made in order to leave an inheritance to us. I pray that this and the coming generation will see the value added to their lives, to our community and our legacy by increasing our literacy and investing in our own communities. May GOD continue to bless those that have vision and can see and work toward health and wealth for themselves and multiple generations of their families. Hunnuh chillun, hol pun de famlee and hol pun de land!