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Why We Exist

Founded in March 2007 under the leadership of CEO Ruby N Lewis, Please Don't Die Black Men (PDDBM) originated in response to the lack of positive and empowering media outlets dedicated to uplifting African American males. Initially focused on addressing challenges specific to this demographic, PDDBM aimed to create awareness and provide resources to overcome obstacles, fostering unity and solidarity within the black male community. Key areas of concern included societal stereotypes and impediments related to substance abuse, unemployment, education, and health disparities.

Citing statistical data from a 2022 study highlighting significant socioeconomic gaps, with 17.1 percent of Black individuals living below the poverty line compared to 8.6 percent of their white counterparts, PDDBM recognized the systemic racism prevalent in educational, employment, and housing systems. To address these disparities, the organization shifted its mission in February 2015 to encompass African Americans and Black individuals of all ages. Aligning with the ideologies of civil rights leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, PDDBM began advocating for equitable access to resources, quality education, and employment opportunities.

In response to alarming health statistics regarding rising suicide rates among Black children and young adults, PDDBM intensified its focus on nurturing positive self-image and self-worth among African American youth. The organization strives to create an environment that fosters self-love and confidence, addressing the root causes contributing to these concerning trends.

A significant milestone in PDDBM's journey occurred on July 18, 2023, when it achieved non-profit status as a 501(c)(3) organization. This formal recognition solidified the organization's commitment to advocating for equity, empowerment, and inspiration within African American/Black communities across the nation. PDDBM, driven by the mission to champion equal access to resources, quality education, and economic opportunities, aims to break the cycle of inequality and injustice, contributing to a brighter future for all African Americans/Blacks in the United States.

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