In July 1896, the National Association of Colored Women’s Club Inc. (NACWC) was established. The creation of the club was actually a merger between two organizations, the National League of Colored Women and the National Federation of Afro-American Women.
The merger allowed NACWC to operate on a national level and address the needs of black women globally. The club’s motto was “Lifting as we climb” promoting self-help amongst women. Even though they focused on different forms of women suffrage just like the white women’s group, they made it a point to include race as well as gender. The NACWC saw their movement as a way to empower black women, men, and children.
By 1916, there were over 300 newly registered clubs with nearly 100,000 members. As the NACWC evolved, they began to take on several social services including raising money for kindergartens, libraries, orphanages, and homes for the elderly. The organization also raised awareness around lynching, segregation, and other issues specific to the black community.
During the civil rights struggle, NACWC fully supported the movement and even gave financial assistance to the nine black students integrating Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. Today, this organization still operates for the betterment of black women globally.