Growing up I was taught to be strong, to never crack under pressure, or allow others to see my vulnerabilities. Like a lot of young black girls, I was groomed to carry the weight of the world on my shoulders. It was rarely ok to ask for help outside of my own home. Simply, you keep face and figure it out. Vulnerability was viewed as a weakness. As a black girl, weakness wasn’t a part of my birthright and strength was synonymous to my survival.
-Michelle Gilbert, Director of Shelter Advocacy