Home » Why don’t we celebrate Black History Month down Under ?

Why don’t we celebrate Black History Month down Under ?

by  Africa Media Australia


Have you noticed that it’s February, the month dedicated to Black History Month in the US and Canada? But what about its significance for Black Africans in Australia? Surprisingly, the Land Down Under has yet to fully embrace this crucial celebration, widely observed not only in North America but also in Europe, the UK, and Ireland, albeit in October.

As we navigate through Black History Month, it presents a timely opportunity to explore the dynamic and unfolding narrative of African migrants who have made substantial contributions to Australia’s cultural landscape. The tale of African migration to Australia is one marked by resilience,  triumph over adversity, and a compelling testament to the rich diversity that characterises the Land Down Under.

AMA’s CEO, Clyde Salumu Sharady speaking about Black History Month at a community event


Despite the absence of widespread acknowledgment in Australia, it becomes imperative to reflect on and appreciate the African-Australian community’s unique journey and contributions. Their stories of strength and cultural enrichment deserve recognition, as they continue to shape the mosaic of Australian society. While Australia may not be partaking in the festivities of Black History Month as of yet, the growing awareness of diverse narratives and the celebration of cultural diversity are steps toward a more inclusive and globally connected society. As we move forward, let’s foster a deeper understanding of the shared histories that bind us and celebrate the contributions of all communities, including the vibrant and resilient African migrants who call Australia home.



The first Africans  arrived in Australia with the early European settlers in the late 18th century. Many members of the African diaspora entered colonial society at many points before Federation in 1900. However, the first wave of African migrants in Australia occurred during the mid-20th century, with subsequent waves seeking refuge, education, and opportunities. From this tapestry emerged a community that not only preserved its unique cultural heritage, but also contributed significantly to various facets of Australian society.

In the realms of arts, sports, academia, and business, African migrants have left an indelible mark. Renowned artists, scholars, athletes, and entrepreneurs have emerged from within the African-Australian community, bringing forth a new perspective and dynamism to the national landscape. Their contributions have not only enriched Australia’s cultural identity, but have also fostered a more inclusive society.

Black History Month provides an essential platform to reflect on these achievements and foster a deeper understanding of the African-Australian experience. It is a time for communities, leaders, and individuals to celebrate the diversity that makes Australia unique.


Clyde Sharady talks about encouraging more entrepreneurship within African-Australian communities on video


A call to action for African community leaders resonates during this month of reflection. Leaders can engage in dialogues that highlight the journey of African migrants, organize cultural events, and share narratives that showcase the community’s resilience and accomplishments. By amplifying the stories of African-Australians, leaders can inspire the younger generation and cultivate a sense of pride in their heritage.

Additionally, Black History Month can serve as an occasion for educational initiatives, collaborative projects, and mentorship programs that further bridge the gap between communities. Celebrating African-Australian history is not just an acknowledgment of the past but an investment in a more inclusive and united future.

Black History Month is an annual observance originating in the US where it is also known as African-American History Month. It has received official recognition from governments in the United States and Canada and more recently has been observed in Ireland and the UK. It began as a way of remembering important people and events in the history of the African Diaspora. It is celebrated in February in the United States  and Canada, while in Ireland and the United Kingdom it is observed in October.  In the context of African migrants in Australia, Black History month  is an invitation to celebrate the richness of diversity and acknowledge the ongoing contributions of the African-Australian community. Through reflection, education, and community engagement, this month can become a catalyst for building stronger connections and fostering a shared appreciation for the diverse narratives that shape Australia’s cultural mosaic.


Clyde Sharady

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