Black Womens Blueprint, Inc.

Committed to Safety and Dignity for Women and Girls

aka Black Women's Blueprint   |   Brooklyn, NY   |


Black Women’s Blueprint, Inc. is a civil and human rights organization of women and men. Our purpose is to take action to secure social, political and economic equality in American society now. We work to develop a culture where African-American women are fully empowered and where gender, race and other disparities are erased. We engage in progressive research, historical documentation, support movement building and organize for social justice steeped in the struggles of African-American women within their own communities and within dominant culture.

Ruling year info


Executive Director

Farah Tanis

Associate Executive Director

Sevonna Brown

Main address

P.O. BOX 24713

Brooklyn, NY 11202 USA

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NTEE code info

Civil Rights, Advocacy for Specific Groups (R20)

Arts Service Activities/Organizations (A90)

Voluntarism Promotion (T40)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Safe, healing spaces and strategies, including acknowledgment of the full range of challenges faced by Black rape survivors are a critical need. Women of African descent in particular have suffered racial discrimination and suffer gender discrimination as women; Current USDOJ data indicates that Black women are 35% more likely to be victims of violence and account for a full third of intimate partner homicides, yet they comprise only 8% of the U.S. population. Sexual stereotypes and sexual representations “force Black victims of sexual assault to navigate in a society that shames them and shapes their experiences as victims. Recent and contemporary accounts point to pervasive and unexplored legal problems for rape/sexual assault victims who are African American—namely, the rights of crime victims against racial and sexual discrimination. These factors intersect with the reproductive health needs of Black women who disproportionately experience maternal mortality and morbidity.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Truth Commission, HerStory Archives, Gender Justice Fund

The Truth Commission is a Human Rights initiative organizing women to engage in social justice advocacy and healing around legacies of human rights abuse and atrocities that have impacted their lives and continue to impact their communities. This initiative affirms the U.S. historical context utilizing an intersectional approach. The Truth Commission focuses on women of African descent, their multigenerational and contemporary experiences with sexual violence and the ways in which this has historically intersected with criminal justice violence and poverty in their lives and in their communities. The Truth Commission combines civil and human rights research, using a critical participatory action model, engaging in documentation and aggressive public education to unearth the stories and amplify the voices of Black women and girls, as well as hold every level of society accountable for upholding their human rights.

Our Black HerStory Project aims to counter the effects of popular culture, teaches Black History in order to promote respect and dignity for Black women by highlighting and teaching their rich contribution to history, raising self-esteem, self-worth, connecting the past to the present and future, reconnecting to roots and inspiring pride. Part museum, part library, this Project is committed to creating greater knowledge and appreciation of the relevance of Black women to Women’s History and Black Historical issues, through innovative exhibitions, public programs and educational interactive tours tailored for our boys and girls offering them alternative images of Black women. This program has already obtained materials for several exhibits on the lives of key Black women from throughout the African Diaspora. At capacity this program will house artifacts, books, papers, video documentaries, video re-enactments, periodicals, t-shirts, buttons, campaign banners, organizational files etc. in a grand space catering to community adults and youth alike.

Through its Gender Justice Fund, Black Women’s Blueprint develops innovative community partnership, shares resources and gives a portion of all funds raised via its events, giving circles to individual activists and groups that share its mission and objectives.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Black Women’s Blueprint’s (BWB) Goal is to 1) provide healing programs, 2) advocacy and 3) prevention-education curricula that holistically addresses sexual violence, using an approach rooted in historical, grassroots, anti-oppression and policy work.

For nearly a decade, programs at Black Women’s Blueprint has focused on sexual-violence prevention, training, advocacy, and healing justice in partnership with sexual assault survivors across a variety of identities. Since its launch, Black Women’s Blueprint has focused on critical interventions across African diasporic communities of the U.S. and abroad. The organization is the convener of the first Black Women’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission on Sexual Violence to occur in the United States. The human rights policy advocacy by Black Women’s Blueprint has focused on the United Nations and the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), The Committee on the Convention Against Torture (CAT), and localized efforts to implement the UN Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). As part of a national task force on gender-violence and a think tank to end racism and racial capitalism, the organization engages legislators, other advocacy networks, feminist and human rights entities in order to center the needs of Black women and girls.

1) Sustain our onsite trauma healing and counseling services directly engaging survivors as young as age fourteen through senior citizenship annually, who are saying #MeToo, who are seeking crisis intervention, sustained healing, and are often asking after disclosure: “what now”; “how do I repair, restore my own body to myself; how do I heal?”

2) Respond to a community of sexual assault prevention and reproductive healthcare practitioners as well as concerned community members across the City, with Sistas Van mobile healing unit to address the intra-community, intergenerational sexual assault, sexual abuse, and persistent trauma experienced by survivors within a myriad of settings including: in their homes, community streets, reproductive healthcare settings, workplace, and their universities.

3) Enable a framework of train the trainer modules, sharing our healing model with 120 doulas and birth-workers seizing upon, and working to correct what BWB interprets as a vacuum in the contemporary conversations about sexual violence, its intersection with reproductive health, and how this violence negatively impacts maternal outcomes. Specifically, BWB’s technical assistance and training will expand Community Survival Clinics training doulas who work with survivors of sexual violence, to build their skill-skets and strategies, and a referral network to trauma counselors throughout the city when survivors are triggered or when they encounter trauma within medical facilities, hospitals, labor and delivery wards, exam and c-section operating tables.

Furthermore: The organization seeks to bolster its flagship initiative, the Institute for Gender and Culture (IGC) is a critical intervention in the anti-violence, reproductive justice and other social justice movement. The IGC delivers prevention education and intervention curricula based on an understanding of the complex interplay between the individual, relational, social, cultural, environmental, historical and persistent systemic factors that influence the spectrum of discrimination, oppression and violence that impact people’s lives. Using proven effective pedagogy and methodologies, that include small group and large classroom learning, online methods, art and street theater and other innovative learning and teaching methods.

Black Women’s Blueprint staff and Directors possess over 18 years of providing sexual assault services in communities of color, and specifically to victims of Black/African American victims and survivors of sexual assault. Founded in 2008 and launched in 2010, Black Women’s Blueprint has reached over 16,000 community members via museum, arts and educational materials to address the spectrum of sexual violence against women and girls in Black communities. Our technical assistance and training has resulted in 105 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across the nation, including 300 faculty and students annually. The organization itself has over 10 years of experience addressing sexual assault in Black communities of New York City within a human rights framework and via an anti-oppression lens. We continue to partner with local communities, faith based leaders, national agencies, policymakers, advocates and community-based organizations to strengthen efforts to address issues of critical concern to Black women who are victims of or at risk for sexual assault. The organization has the programmatic, managerial, and financial capability to carry out the proposed program. With numerous donors and foundation grants, The Organization is highly competent in budgeting, developing project work plans and time lines, hiring, supervising, and retaining staff; and evaluating and documenting results. The Organization has a strong track record in locating and providing quality services to victims of sexual assault. The Organization has its own Personnel Policies and Procedures Manual, and a separate Fiscal Policies and Procedures manual. To ensure that our programs run effectively, we provide extensive staff training, weekly case consultation, staff meetings, and supervision. In addition, our Program policy and procedure manual is used as a guide to ensure that appropriate and coordinated services are provided to victims and their children living with physical, sexual, financial, verbal and emotional, spiritual and other forms of oppression. The Organization thus has an infrastructure that fully supports the proposed program, highly-qualified and dedicated staff, long-time experience in providing sexual assault services to our target population, an array of culturally- and linguistically-competent services to which program participants will have access, and extensive linkages with other relevant service providers. Our success is demonstrated by our continual ability to meet our performance goals and the first-rate evaluations, contract renewals, grants, and honors we receive. The Organization members, including Co-Directors have received many honors for service to New York's immigrant women including a fellowship from the Soros Foundation/Open Society Institute, Proclamations from the NYC Council, a Union Square Award, an Emigrant Award, and a Local Hero Award.

BWB’s additional accomplishments include:

As a Technical Assistance and Training (TA) Provider for the Office on Violence Against Women, BWB has also worked with students, staff, and faculty of color at 105 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) across the country to end rape on campus, providing direct technical support and training using the only national culturally-specific broad- based primary prevention and bystander intervention program to be recognized by the CDC. Black Women’s Blueprint is also proud to democratize an equitable political action and prevention curriculum via our Institute for Gender and Cultural Competency, enlisting a national roster of illustrious Black feminist faculty to deliver workshops and other trainings to the public, including around New York City.

Active, direct, multi-approach intervention with, by and for survivors of sexual assault using critical-race and gender justice lens.

Counseling services tailored for Black victims and a variety of culturally relevant services, including healing circles, sister circles that serve over 200 girls, women, femmes and non-binary survivors per year.

Creative healing strategies such as quilting, story-telling, theater, song and African dance, reaching over 450 individuals a year.

Trainings in racial and gender justice through our Liberatory Healing Model which was intentionally designed with a cultural and gender lens.

Outreach and public education to over 3000 individuals at colleges and community sites as well as on-site at its offices specifically on the cultural and linguistic factors for Black Survivors of sexual violence.

Innovation in critical participatory research, reporting, culturally and linguistically specific curricula and training programs for community organizations, advocacy groups, and other entities and the organization has trained over 200 entities per month using these gender-violence, consent, community organizing, anti-rape advocacy curricula.

Deployment of strategies unique to the field of anti-violence and sexual assault service delivery, such as a community mobile healing unit, Sistas Van.

Coalition building across movements, across sectors, geography and ethnicity toward the development of non-profit solidarity economies or feminist economies to ultimately build women’s political power.

Provision of on-going national technical assistance in the form of quarterly-calls, one-on-one visits and review of any expansion of its model, at historically black colleges and mainstream universities, community based organizations, city institutions and public school education setting and functions as a prevention resource in the nation as well as several jurisdictions, state department of health and other agencies.

Deployment of sophisticated social media programming to spark unpopular conversations, unpack racialized/sexualized ideologies that perpetuate violence.


Black Womens Blueprint, Inc.

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Black Womens Blueprint, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 04/22/2020
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Shawnda Chapman-Brown


Janeen Mantin

Museum of Natural History

Cathline Burgos

Raritan College

Kalima De Suze

Columbia University

Edgar Burgos

No Affiliation

Rachelle Jennings

No Affiliation

Silvia Dutchevici

Sanctuary for Families

Renee Morgan Saaks

Urban Bush Women

Shawnda Chapman Brown