A Letter from Stephanie, Beccastone’s Founder
My name is Stephanie Phillipps. I am a black mom, married with two grown children, a daughter, 22 years old, and a son, 20. I also am a practicing lawyer in Washington, D.C. Now that my parenting job is pretty much done ( at least the day-to-day part!), I began to search for something to do that could be helpful to other moms and kids. I decided to create this site to give black moms a place where we safely can share parenting tips, information and questions about raising healthy, educated children who have a strong sense of self and cultural identity. This site also is designed to give black moms cultural and historical information that can be potential teaching tools and to provide access to experts who can address some of the special issues we and our children face.
While society may be evolving to a point where it is “colorblind” and “race neutral”, it certainly doesn’t seem to be there yet. I believe black moms still face special challenges in trying to raise kids who are comfortable in their own skin but who also can navigate successfully the greater society and the working world. Plus, as with any group that wishes to preserve its heritage, it is important for black children to understand and appreciate their history and culture. I hope this site will give us a chance to explore the issues that are important to us and to learn about solutions and approaches that have worked for other moms.
I chose the name “Beccastone” for this site based on a stone marker dedicated to a former slave named Rebecca. The stone marker is in a natural preserve in North Chilmark, Massachusetts on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. (It is interesting that Martha’s Vineyard has a long history of being a place that welcomed black vacationers and worshippers and today continues to attract many black families on summer vacation.) This memorial, which is a copper plaque on a large stone, is part of the African American Heritage Trail of Martha’s Vineyard.
This site will be a global platform connecting black moms wherever we are, for the benefit of our children. Our focus now is on African American children. But we hope that will broaden as the site grows and expands. We want black moms’ needs and interests to be our guideposts for content, direction and growth. We are very good at sharing, talking and helping each other. This site will harness the power of the Internet to widen our conversations for the benefit of the broader community of black moms. Please let us hear from you. You have much to share with your sister moms.