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On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks made history by refusing to give up her seat to a white person on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Her action made her into a household name in the U.S., but she was not the first black person to stand up—or rather, stay seated—for racial justice on the buses of Montgomery. Nine months earlier, on March 2 that same year, 15-year-old Claudette Colvin had been arrested for doing exactly the same thing.

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Shkoryah Carthen has spent half of her life working in the service industry. While the 32-year old restaurant worker quickly sensed that Covid-19 would bring real change to her daily life, Carthen hardly knew just how strongly it would impact her livelihood.

"The biggest challenge for me during this time, honestly is just to stay afloat," Carthen said.

Upon learning the Dallas restaurant she worked for would close indefinitely, Carthen feared its doors may never reopen.

Soon after, Carthen learned that The Wilkinson Center was desperately looking for workers to create and distribute meals for those in need in their community. The next day, Carthen was at the food pantry restocking shelves and creating relief boxes filled with essentials like canned foods, baby formula and cleaning products. In addition to feeding families throughout the area, this work ensured Carthen the opportunity to provide food for her own.

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