Created to show the true breadth of the black experience, Hallmark’s Uplifted and Empowered collection addresses race

WASHINGTON — An eleven card collection created by African American women writers addressing racial resilience and pride has been created by Hallmark. 

It’s OK to say, “We are not OK,” Black, Strong, Proud, Loud and Perseverance is in our DNA, are just a few of the titles from Hallmark’s Mahogany Uplifted and Empowered Collection

This is the first time Hallmark has created cards that specifically address race relations as it relates to the Black community.

The idea was sparked during the 2020 summer protests of the George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery killings. 

Hallmark’s creative community reportedly looked for a way to start impactful activism. In the end, they discussed putting together messages and perspectives that were relevant to the Black community to see right now.

“There are not many cards that address the difficulty of race, cards that speak directly to the truth of Black experiences,” said Courtney Taylor, who is a senior writer at Hallmark and also the writer of the It’s OK to say “We are not OK.” card. 

“When do we give ourselves the space to scream, to cry, to feel the hurt, to step back and reflect? … I hope this card reaches people who need to lean into their feelings,” added Taylor.

Hallmark’s Mahogany brand has been in existence since 1987, creating cards and gifts for the African American community. Interestingly, according to their website, Washington D.C. is responsible for the most sales of Mahogany care products.

“In this current moment of racial injustice, this collection is an assertion of presence,” said Mercedes Lucero, who is another one of the writers of the collection, “As a Black writer and poet, I wrote words I needed to hear.” Most of the writers felt a personal connection writing each of the cards and believed it was not only for them but for their families as well.”

So when is a good time to send a card from this collection? They outlined several occasions including:

  • To inspire a love one to embrace their Black power
  • To encourage self-love and rest during a difficult time
  • To show allyship
  • To let a Black child know how much they’re valued

More occasions are listed on their website.

Considering the recent protests happening in Minnesota with the shooting of Duante Wright, now may be a time to show a friend you’re thinking about them during this difficult time.

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