Plus, where to support Black businesses.
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💝 Honoring MLK Day and PDX Black Lives

Plus, where to support Black businesses.

Welcome to Friday. 

We’re looking ahead to Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which is coming up on Monday. The day honors the legacy of civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who made great strides toward equality for Black citizens of the United States from 1955 to 1968. He helped change this country in powerful ways — teaching people that their voice matters and that standing up against injustice is important.

The fight for equality, justice, and fair, compassionate treatment of the Black community across the country continues — and certainly in Portland

We want to honor that continued fight for Black lives, so today’s Bridgeliner is focused on local events and organizations to volunteer with and donate to — not just on Monday, but all year long. Have something else to add to the list? Hit reply to let us know.

💝 Learn, donate, and support Black lives in Portland

(🎨: Bridgeliner illustration)

💖 Volunteer and donate

Consider supporting the following nonprofits and organizations as they bolster Black communities in the Portland area.

A virtual community hub created to amplify the voices and message of the Black community in Portland, ultimately to improve economic conditions for Black families. The group provides assistance to business owners, non-profits, creatives, and other organizations.

Don’t Shoot PDX

A Black-led human rights nonprofit that advocates for accountability. Since 2014, the group has implemented art, education, and civic participation to create social change.

Equitable Giving Circle

A group committed to giving through small donations, event fundraising, volunteering, and community-building. Their goal is “to empower BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) communities in Portland by leveraging economic deposits from communities of privilege to empower BIPOC communities toward economic equity.”

Feed The Mass

This local nonprofit brings people together through food and education. It promotes awareness, inclusion, and the importance of healthy cooking and eating. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Feed The Mass has been providing free chef-driven meals to anyone in need of food, nourishment, care, and community. They also offer on-the-job training for volunteers interested in the food industry, along with training in the art of making beautiful, healthy food for large groups.

Self Enhancement Inc. 

A comprehensive, one-stop resource for youth and families, primarily African Americans and others living in poverty or seeking culturally responsive services. It’s also one of the city’s leading multi-service organizations, providing thousands of youth, families, and adults with a wide array of education and social services on an annual basis.

The Black Resilience Fund

A GoFundMe launched after the police killing of George Floyd. The Black Resilience Fund aims to foster healing and resilience through financial relief to Black Portlanders. The account has raised well over $2 million of its $2,500,000 goal. 

Urban League 

One of the oldest civil rights and social service organizations in Oregon, Urban League empowers African Americans and others to achieve equality in education, employment, health, economic security, and quality of life.

For a list of local organizations feeding Black communities across Portland, check out this list from Eater.

For a full list of Black nonprofits and organizations to donate to, explore this Ecotrust guide

💼 Support Portland’s Black-owned businesses

Whether you’re treating yourself to something nice, shopping for a loved one, or hungry for something delicious, send your dollar toward these incredible Black-owned businesses. For Dr. King, economic equality for Black citizens was an important element of empowerment.

Businesses & Gifts

Have a gander at this list from Portland Monthly the next time you’re shopping around, and patronize Black business owners in our city — from “Make Racism Wrong Again” shirts at Mimi’s Fresh Tees to the beautiful plant oasis of EcoVibe to crisp chardonnays from Abbey Creek Vineyard

Scroll through Mercatus’ Black-owned business directory to support and celebrate an amazing group of Black entrepreneurs here in Portland. This organization elevates the unique and universal narratives of entrepreneurs of color in Portland and connects the city and region with local talents, businesses, services, and products that come from the ethnically diverse entrepreneurs in the city.

Check out Bridgeliner’s 2020 Gift Guide, where we collaborated with Portland Made to highlight gifts from Black-owned businesses in the city. You can find everything from decadent bath and body care at Ritual + Fancy to savory and complex sauces at Eleni’s Kitchen

Food and drink

This comprehensive map from EaterPDX will sate your appetite — from soul food at Clinton’s Kitchen to Philly cheesesteaks at Gourmet Brothers to sweet things from Mamacy Tea & Chocolate

📖 Learn more 

There is never a better time to learn more about the history, legacy, and impact of civil rights activists from the past and present — as well as from Black journalists and Martin Luther King Jr. Day events.

The Skanner

Since 1975, The Skanner News Group has advanced the cause of Black Press in the North Western United States and Portland. Stop by and support local, Black journalism.

The Skanner Foundation’s 35th annual Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast

While the event is virtual this year, attendees will get to see addresses from Senator Ron Wyden, as well as performances from local artists like jazz musicians Mike Phillips and the Portland Symphonic Choir with Dorcas Brown Smith. Don’t forget to snap a picture of your breakfast to share with the group, and potentially win a new Skanner News hoodie. 

Portland’s Black History

A collaboration between The Skanner and Travel Portland, this article provides education and insight into Portland’s Black history, from some of the first Black Oregon politicians to Black pioneers. 

A virtual reading of Dr. King’s “American Dream” speech

Portland Playhouse is hosting a community reading over Zoom on Monday, and encourages attendees to support Portland’s Black-owned restaurants after the event. 

The King Center

The Atlanta-based organization is devoted to honoring Dr. King’s legacy and commitment to the fight for civil rights for Black communities across the country. 

For a full list of educational resources and Martin Luther King Jr. Day events, go here

Thank you Bridgeliner Unabridged members, your support helps make Bridgeliner, and original stories like this, possible.

📅 Things to do

Submit your events to our calendar.


✒️ Learn how to make a super-cool ‘zine (Online)

😌 Wake up to Saturday morning yoga with Krystal (Online)

🎙️ Turn your podcast idea into a reality (Online)


✒️ Renew yourself with this poetry workshop (Online)


🍳 Join The Skanner for their annual MLK Day Breakfast (Online)

💬 Listen to a virtual reading of Dr. King's "American Dream" speech (Online)

☝️One more thing …

Thanks for reading all the way to the end.

Enjoy the weekend and we’ll see you here on Tuesday.

-Cassie at Bridgeliner

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