Meet BlacBox Ambassador: Mary C. Namagambe
I love being a woman. But sometimes, it can feel like a caged joy.
Even in 2020, there are those, including other women, who believe that the world isn’t ready for us, especially black women, to have a seat at the table and lead. I have been so fortunate throughout my formative years and still today to be surrounded by inspiring women. But it wasn’t always like that.
I grew up around a lot of white people. In elementary school, in high school and in college, I remember being told that I was one of the “good ones” – not like the “bad ones”. I was “different”. Being different also meant that there were not many people that looked like me.
There was a serious lack of black female role models, leaving a generation of girls like me without inspiration and identifiable pathways to pursue our dreams.
At the age of 31, I feel like I have only scraped the surface of everything I am yet to experience and achieve, both professionally and personally. Having a Masters in Law and being the founder & CEO of She for She, a company that produces reusable pads in Uganda and empowers young girls and women, I still know there are many more things to come.
At a young age, I faced many issues in a majority-white society that I could not accept for myself or for my fellow Afro-Danes. There was prejudice and intolerance that was expressed in small gestures that were difficult to talk about back then. The history of slavery and colonialism was never taught at school. Accusations of racism were often denied, as most Danes do not perceive themselves as such. This means that Afro-Danes had to carry the burdens and effects of racial violence & discrimination, without proper recognition.
Since I was a teenager, I’ve worked to challenge issues facing minorities in Denmark, and create organisations such as UVU, foreigners guiding foreigners about education, and The N-word Hurts, as I saw a gap in rights and empowerment for people of African descent as well as other minorities.
I continue to fight against the racism and discrimination the African diaspora faces in white-majority societies, as well as dedicating myself to women empowerment on the African continent. My resume so far is the result of a lot of hard work, but also and mostly due to the belief that the sky is truly the limit.
When young black women write to me that I inspire them, I feel like I have made it. I believe that real role models don’t seek to write history or make change for their own purposes. They do everything to inspire others. As my role models have been critical in my success, I wouldn’t have known that I could do what I’ve done throughout my career, without role models shining a light on the path to success. That is why it’s such a privilege for me to be a role model for other girls and women. We all need role models.
Those role models need to look and think like us and we need them to be visible in the media, as well as in society at large so that they can reach and inspire as many people as possible. As much as we need role models when it comes to our careers, we also need role models that can inspire self-love and self-care. It’s impossible to take care of others before we take care of ourselves.
That’s why self-care is at the top of my agenda and should be at the top of your agenda. This is why I’m a BlacBox Ambassador.
Black hair, black skin is a big deal – culturally and economically. Black women are estimated to spend around six times more on hair care than other women, typically change their hairstyle far more often and spend hundreds of hours in hair salons. And yet, barely any mainstream Danish retailers stock afro hair creams and oils. When it comes to beauty, black Danish women and their hair feel more or less ignored.
So I took matters into my own hands by becoming an ambassador for theBlacBox, because there is nothing that makes me more happy than showing support for black innovators by investing money into black owned businesses. I’m looking for that social element and connection to brands, rather than just buying anonymous products.
With theBlacBox, I know that everything I use is handpicked for my skin and hair. This is why I’m an ambassador for theBlacBox.
Put self care at the top of your agenda & start your
BlacBox experience today.