Entrepreneur and advocate Sha Battle asked herself why Black women’s history wasn’t celebrated enough. It’s that question that lead her to fight for the stories of Black women that often go unnoticed in 2016. She established April as International Black Women’s History Month in the city of Atlanta.

“When you google Black History Month, it oftentimes the same five, ten or fifteen Black women who come up in the results, and it was the same thing for Women’s History Month,” Battle said in a recent interview with Essence. “I thought we need our own month because there’s absolutely awesome things here, and they often go unrecognized.”

The significance of recognizing Black women’s wonderful achievements lies in understanding the intersectionality of racism, sexism and other social inequalities that shape experiences.

“Since women’s experiences are not a monolith, it is important to explore the experiences of Black women, while examining the interconnectedness of racism, sexism, classism, and other social inequalities,” she explained. “Illuminating these experiences is integral to advancing Black women’s rights and economic justice.”

The theme this year is “Black Women: Uplifting Each Other, Telling Our Stories, Honoring Our Legacies.” This theme underscores the importance of solidarity and sisterhood among Black women. It created a need to amplify their voices and celebrate their diverse achievements.

Battle’s vision for the celebration extends beyond borders. This initiative is meant to encompass the global diaspora of Black and minority women.

“Black Women’s History Month is not just for Black Women in the U.S., but also extends to the Diaspora,” Battle shared in an interview with Bauce Magazine.

Striving for More Exposure

Battle has been actively working to garner national and international recognition for International Black Women’s History Month. From seeking presidential proclamations to collaborating with legislators, she isn’t stopping. Battle doing everything she can to ensure that the month reaches a global scale.

Her legacy is already making waves beyond Atlanta. In Virginia, Delegate Josh Cole introduced a resolution to designate April as Black Women’s History Month. Similarly, in Canada, the NAACP Vancouver Branch officially recognized the month. The mayors of Washington D.C. and Cincinnati also joined the ranks of government officials who have proclaimed the month-long celebration in their respective cities.