As one of the most diverse sports leagues in the UK, the British Basketball League are proud to support Black History Month (BHM).
During the month of October, we will be sharing stories from
members of the Black community across our Leagues in celebration and
recognition of Black history.
In the second of our interviews surrounding Black History
Month, we were able to sit down with two-time MVP of the League and current Surrey
Scorchers guard Justin Robinson to talk about the importance of Black History
Growing up in Brixton, London, the former MVP spent his formative years in inner-city London. Coming from a Caribbean background, Justin has always believed in retaining a sense of pride in his upbringing and background throughout his life.
According to the UK Office for National Statistics, 38.5% of Brixton’s population are members of the Black community. Justin has been able to acknowledge this throughout his upbringing and when he returned to England in 2017 when he joined the London Lions.
Justin has worked effortlessly since he returned to give the younger people of Brixton a better chance of success in life.
“I go into a lot of schools in the Brixton area. My talks
aren’t just about the do’s and don’ts growing up, but it’s also about letting
the kids know that they can have a sense of pride in what their parents did to
“They went through hell. So, when I visit schools, it’s to install that self-love and self-respect.”
💬“#BlackHistoryMonth has highlighted to me that I need to use my position to do more for the Black community.”
— British Basketball League (@britishbasketm) October 5, 2023
More than a Month
History Month was made to acknowledge and recognise the achievements that
members of the Black community have made throughout history.
for all of us, it shouldn’t just be something that is isolated to one month.
players in the British Basketball League, this is the case, and many players will
take on many humanitarian causes to help the next generation come through life
better than the previous.
Justin told us that he doesn’t need a month to ‘wake him up’ and that he is always working to help the next generation.
it’s a way of life. To me, it’s more so an obligation that I feel like I have
to do it. I have to give back to my community, I have to be accessible to the
kids, and I have to be an outlet that they can come to as a safe haven.
of basketball or being a two-time MVP, I’m just going to keep what I’m doing by
mentoring the younger generation. I love basketball, but helping people is my
Saluting Our Sisters
This year’s Black History Month centres around “saluting our
sisters”. The idea is to empower and spread awareness and acknowledge the women
in the black community and what they have done to progress over the decades.
Like many other members of the Black community, Justin looks up to some of the great Black women in history, such as Rosa Parks and Nanny of the Maroons, but also the women in his life currently and through his upbringing have left a positive mark on him.
“In my own life, I’ve always been around strong Black women. My aunts, my Godmothers, and many others through my time in Brixton.
“The list goes on. There are loads of strong Black women that I came up under that I see as big sisters and as mother figures.”
The League and BHM
The British Basketball League is going all out this October.
As a result, we’re putting the spotlight on our players, coaches, and members
of our own League back-office team. We will share their stories, find out who
inspired them, and dig into their celebrations for Black History Month.
In celebration of Black History Month 2023, the British
Basketball League is also offering small black-owned businesses located within
25 miles of League clubs the chance to receive free advertising on the LED
boards during Thursday and Friday games throughout October 2023.
To go along with this, as part of our commitment to
celebrating Black History Month, we are asking our clubs’ players to visit
schools and speak about its significance.
Keep updated with the British Basketball League as we share these important stories during the month of October. To find more resources and to learn more about Black History Month and the Saluting Our Sisters theme, please follow this link.
With the new season here, you can still get your British Basketball fix by following the League on social media or heading to our YouTube channel to relive all of the best moments from the current season.