Source: John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe

*Editor’s Note: This is an inaugural piece in an AMPLIFY series about the ways in which white women must be working to undo white supremacy in global development. If you’re interested in contributing to this ongoing conversation, please follow the submission instructions.

In January of 2017, following the 2016 presidential election, I remember the devastation I felt when I learned that my mother was amongst the 53% of white women who voted for Trump.

“You know, how you’re feeling right now, scared and anxious, is how I felt when Obama was elected.”

As soon as the words left her mouth…

Photo by Dr. Kavita Maya for Impakter

By Bailey Borchardt, GHC’s Communications Associate, & Brittany Cesarini

At least once a year, in response to a horrific act of racial injustice in the U.S., a subset of white Americans will make a sweeping claim that this is the moment to step up to the work of dismantling white supremacy in our nation. More often than not, after a couple of news cycles, the urgency around the work unravels and white people go back to being complacent.

But white supremacy is not a natural state. It is an artificial construct that was built for white people, by white people…

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

What do ice and racial equity have in common?

I recently participated in a “Courageous Leadership Across Difference, Discord, and Distance” workshop where facilitator Dr. Georgette Ledgister, or Dr. Jojo as she goes by, quickly connected the dots in an “ice-breaking” exercise. Prior to the workshop, all participants were asked to have ice available to us. At the start of the workshop, Dr. Jojo asked us to hold the ice in our hands and see how long we could hold it before it began to hurt. Needless to say, many of us tapped out quickly.

Once the laughter and numbness…

Trigger Warning: This piece contains themes of loss, suicidal thoughts, depression, and sexual trauma.

This is a multi-part series about finding one’s self again after facing severe trauma. I chose to write it as a series because this journey to return to myself is still a work-in-progress.

On New Year’s Day, I found myself in line at the local pharmacy waiting to purchase Plan B. It wasn’t something I had ever had to do, and it wasn’t something I was particularly thrilled about doing, but it was necessary. …

From the moment I learned how to speak, I’ve always challenged my father.

My mom likes to recall a charming story of one of the first times my personality peaked through my three-year-old vessel. My father used to be notorious for having small cuts on his arms and one day I asked him why he was bleeding. He launches into this exhaustive account of a lion that jumped out at him from the bushes as he was coming home from work that day. This entire time I was watching him unimpressed while sucking on my pacifier. I looked at him…

Bailey Jane Borchardt

Bailey Borchardt is a reproductive justice advocate and communications professional in the global health sector. She is based in New York City.

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