Hampton Organization Recognized For Its Advocacy On and Off Campus

Hampton University’s Chapter of Generation Action: Planned Parenthood (HUGA) was recently awarded the Champion for Women’s Health award at to the seventh annual Planned Parenthood brunch during the Congressional Black Caucus’s(CBC) 48th Legislative Conference. The organization joined the ranks of other award recipients, like U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris and actress Karrueche Tran, for their work on and off campus. The Co-presidents of the organization, Michayah Thomas and Aman Tune, traveled to the conference to accept the award on behalf of the chapter on Saturday September 22.

“It was crazy amazing to see all the Black women in there, like Maxine Waters and Symone Sanders,” recalls Tune about the brunch. “By them being present and telling us how important we are to the movement, it was really inspiring.”

This award category is the first of its kind, and “uplifts the work of young people fighting for sexual and reproductive rights on their campuses and their communities,” according to Planned Parenthood. That is exactly what Generation Action does with their work on and off campus.

Wearing their pink and white t-shirts, the organization has hosted events surrounding sexual violence and assault, sexual education, voting rights, and other aspects of reproductive justice. It has also been integral to the creation of the university’s “Red Flag Campaign” committee and even advocated for the repair of the callboxes around campus.

“The work we do, it’s dealing with people’s lives,” said Co-President Thomas. “It’s been an amazing honor to be an open space for victims of sexual assault to be able to come to me for support.”

Camille Burrus, a junior Biology major from California, has been a member of HUGA for the past year and said the organization has helped her become more politically active. “It opened my eyes to how politics affects our daily lives,” said Burrus.

The junior said one of her most memorable experiences with the organization was being able to participate in both the Women’s March and The March for Our Lives. “There was unity between races, genders, and sexual orientations that I haven’t seen before at these events. People from all walks of life fighting for one thing,” said Burrus.

On the day of the brunch, the hashtag #ISUPPORTHUGA was tweeted in support of the organization by a number of prominent figures like actress Karrueche Tran and political activist Symone Sanders.

 

Although the organization has received an enormous amount of support from students and the community, they have received some opposition from campus administration. “We have a lot of problems trying to do things related to politics on campus, just because the school tries to keep things nonpartisan on campus,’” said Thomas about the situation.

Despite this minor setback, Generation Action: Planned Parenthood plans to continue their endeavors on campus. One of the main initiatives for the upcoming school year is their consent and sexual education campus campaign. This initiative is working to expand consent and sexual education to not only freshmen but upperclassmen. So, be on the lookout for this humanitarian organization!  

 

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