CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Terry Mills says he feels a personal connection to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People because his family has been involved for decades. Growing up he was involved in their events alongside them.
Just last month the organization had a free COVID-testing event open to anyone. The Corpus Christi chapter of the NAACP has also hosted free health fairs in partnership with local hospitals like Christus Spohn and Driscoll Children’s Hospital. They had the fairs for eleven straight years until COVID interrupted them last year.
"Up until COVID we would go into the community and we would have different events...not just for Black History Month which is the whole month of February but throughout the year,” Mills said.
Mills says he wants to educate people about not just national African American leaders, but also local leaders like Lena Coleman Williams who he attributes to helping put together the plans for the Orveal Williams Senior Center.
"We educate individuals whether they look like me, look like you, look like whomever, about how African Americans who have paid a contribution to society,” Mills said.
The Corpus Christi chapter of the NAACP, which Mills says has been around in South Texas for 102 years, would also go to schools and put up posters of Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. before COVID.
The organization also denounces police brutality towards people of all races and backgrounds.
"The Black Lives movement really has been an important focal point, but we know that all lives matter, but we should be upset when individuals are treated unfairly,” Cynthia Gonzales, a member of the Corpus Christi chapter of the NAACP said.
Mills says that part of the organization's mission is to educate the next generation about black history and other social issues and hopes to continue doing that even though he says the pandemic is limiting the organization’s events.