Black Butterflyz started out as a small seed that was planted in the Fall of 2011. That seed went unattended for nearly five years, but the dream was that one day it would break the surface and bloom into something amazing. On March 21, 2016, the seed broke ground and the first signs of life were revealed even in the face of death.
My Mama, Clara Simmons, died on Thursday, March 31, 2016 from a 26-year battle with cancer. Ten days prior to her final breath, the doctor said, "Clara was able to fight cancer all of those years because of two things....her faith and her fitness." Those words became my internal soundtrack and personal motivation. Those very words were the missing nutrients from the seed that was planted in 2011.
The Black Butterflyz “seed” now had all the nutrients it needed to start blooming. And, water was the only thing that prevented it from growing into its fullest potential. The potential to transform lives by improving Black women’s health and wellbeing. The first “watering” occurred as a result of my decision to pursue a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree at Kansas State University.
The education I received and projects assigned, while working on my MPH, were just what was needed to take this seed of possibility to a seed of reality. One particular assignment resulted in the research needed to apply for an Impact Grant from The Kansas Health Foundation. This assignment led to the receipt of a fully-funded Impact Grant on Monday, September 11, 2017 to officially launch Black Butterflyz in 2018.
In closing, thank you for visiting this website and I hope you enjoy the content. The development of the Black Butterflyz has truly been a labor of love. #WhenOneFlyzWeAllFly.
Chris “The Health Hippie” Omni