college students distribute over 300 black baby dolls on Christmas to help boost girls’ self-esteem | News

For the past 25 years, it has been a tradition for students at Mary Baldwin University in Staunton, Va., To organize an annual black doll drive for girls in the community.

As a result, around 300 young black girls unwrapped a black doll for Christmas, according to ABC News. The goal is to help build confidence and self-esteem in an effort to combat negative stereotypes.

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First-year student Caitlyn russell, 19, said: “I hope the girls we give these dolls to will understand that their power is limitless. I want them to be able to see that they have the power to do whatever they want.

Chief Diversity Officer, Rev. Andrea Cornett-Scott added, “We know there is a clear link between the achievement gap and self-esteem, especially for black girls. And often African American girls have self-image issues because they don’t see a lot of pictures of themselves in thematic media, and often they have a hard time knowing if they are beautiful or no.

The private university has a student body of around 1,500. Each year the students, mostly freshmen, learn “the doll tests.” The tests are various experiments conducted by psychologists in the 1940s to “test children’s perceptions of race,” the report further notes. Experiments show that the majority of children gave positive characteristics to the white doll and chose her over the black doll.

The “doll tests” were cited in the 1954 Brown v Board of Education Supreme Court case, leading to the desegregation of schools in the United States.

Due to the scarcity of black babydolls in the region, the students took on the challenge of seeing who could find the most.

“It really, really broke my heart because I was like there were girls in the city and they were black and they saw dolls that didn’t represent them,” he said. -he declares. Mylanah Twyman.

A 20-year-old second-year student, Teaira Jordan, mentioned how “when you look at dolls and give these young girls dolls and say, ‘Your black is beautiful, your features are beautiful’, you have to make sure you believe these things yourself. . “

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