How to Celebrate Juneteenth
Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery. Though slaves were officially freed on January 1, 1863, with the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, word didn’t reach those enslaved in Texas until more than two years later — on June 19, 1865.
Now, June 19 is an official federal holiday, and it’s one we can all celebrate — no matter the color of your skin.
How will you honor this meaningful day?
Here are four ways to celebrate Juneteenth:
1. Educate yourself.
Learn more about the history of slavery in our country and its impact on Black Americans. The National Museum of African American History and Culture is a great place to start. You can view the collections and exhibits online, and there’s even an interactive tour of its Juneteenth collection. You can also stop by your local library and check out one of these recommended books on slavery or see if there’s an African American museum in your area.
Contributing to nonprofits and other organizations that support civil rights and equality is another way to make difference on Juneteenth. Some options include the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the National Black Child Development Institute. You can also donate to research centers, museums, and libraries that serve as Black history resources — like the National Museum of African American History and Culture, the International African American Museum, or the Amistad Research Center.
3. Support Black-owned businesses.
Skip Amazon for the day, and shop at local Black-owned shops and businesses instead. You can also shop at one of the 198 online stores for everything from beauty products and books to fitness-related items. If you’re looking for a lower-cost way to support Black businesses, consider following Black content creators and journalists online.
4. Attend Juneteenth events in your area.
Many communities host Juneteenth celebrations to commemorate the day. These offer you a way to learn about Black causes in your area, as well as organizations, nonprofits, and other local groups you can support. There may also be Black vendors at the event you can support. If there’s not one in your area, consider attending a virtual event like the Juneteenth Summit, which runs from June 17 to June 19.
Hope to buy a home?
The Wider Path Home Foundation is working to improve access to housing for Black and other minority populations across the country. The nonprofit group was founded by Embrace, which recently partnered with 23XI and Bubba Wallace — one of the only Black drivers to win a NASCAR Cup Series Race. Wider Path Homes mission is to provide down payment assistance, financial education, and other resources for those hoping to build wealth through homeownership.