Black Lives Matter
FILE - In this Dec. 12, 2020, file photo, MD Crawford carries a Black Lives Matter flag before a march in La Marque, Texas to protest the shooting of Joshua Feast, 22, by a La Marque police officer. The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation launched a new relief fund Monday, Dec. 12, 2022 aimed at Black college students, alumni and dropouts overburdened by mounting education costs and the student loan debt crisis. (Stuart Villanueva /The Galveston County Daily News via AP, File)

Black college students, alumni, and dropouts listen up. If you are overburdened by student loan debt you need to take advantage of this opportunity.

The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation launched a new relief fund and will be awarding more than 500 recipients with relief payments ranging from $750 to $4500 out of a total fund of $500,000.

The BLM foundation’s Student Solidarity Fund has a public application process which has specific requirements you can find on

The fund is an extension of a previous 2021 initiative to help millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet during COVID-19 pandemic.  

Recipients will receive their funds in January if selected. The money isn’t restricted to only student loan payments, but the foundation said the funds are meant to lower recipient’s overall student debt.

There are two phases of this fund. The first is for Black alumni who have college debt and the second is for Black students currently attending HBCUs.

Griner in good spirits

WNBA Star finally returns home and is looking in good shape. Roger Carstens, the special presidential envoy for hostage affairs, and one of the people who helped secure her release, noticed her positive energy on the plane ride home. Griner “went to member on that crew, looked them in the eyes, shook their hands, and asked about them, got their names, making a personal connection with them,” Carsten described. The two-time Olympic gold medalist didn’t want to be alone, and after spending 10 months in captivity and listening to people speak Russian, she was very much ecstatic to finally be able to authentically connect with others. Griner will undergo a full medical and mental evaluation. One can only image the harsh conditions and treatment a Black woman of her status and stature was going through. I’m glad to see she is taking what looked to be the worst part of her life and having a positive mindset as she transitions into her new normal.  

Whitney Houston film played by British Black Actress

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – DECEMBER 13: Naomi Ackie attends “Whitney Houston: I Want To Dance With Somebody” World Premiere at AMC Lincoln Square Theater on December 13, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)

British Actress Naomi Ackie is playing Whitney Houston in the new biopic “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” coming out on December 23. Now for those who are wondering “Another Whitney Houston film?” The film is actually authorized by her estate, producer Clive Davis, and Primary Wave Music, private music publishing and talent management company. The trailer has been buzzing for quite some time giving us a glimpse into Houston’s first time on stage, her connection with long time manager Clive Davis, and her iconic performance of the ‘Star Spangled Banner” at the Superbowl. Some critics however questioned why a British actress would be chosen to portray the legend instead of a Black American actress. Ackie, who is known for her role of Jannah in the film Star Wars: Episode IX- The Skywalker, impressed director Stella Meghie and the actresses “ability to capture the stage presence of a global icon while bringing humanity to her interior life.” These played out complains over Black folk across the ocean accepting roles of Black American icons needs to stop. These complaints won’t stop these talented actors from hustling in an already competitive and challenging industry. Either watch the movie or don’t. Simple.

Laura Onyeneho

I cover Houston's education system as it relates to the Black community for the Defender as a Report for America corps member. I'm a multimedia journalist and have reported on social, cultural, lifestyle,...