One of the more popular hashtags of recent years, Black Girls Rock is an empowering statement and affirmation, all at once. However, please believe that it is more than just a hashtag.

The annual Black Girls Rock Awards took place on Saturday 5 August and honoured some of our favourite media personalities and stalwarts in the African American community.

More than a hashtag: #BlackGirlsRock 2017 AwardsMore than a hashtag: #BlackGirlsRock 2017 AwardsFounded in 2006 by celebrity DJ, model and producer, Beverly Bond, the Black Girls Rock movement is passionate about changing the negative narrative and depiction of Black women and girls in the media. They also do a wonderful job of empowering and enriching girls through leadership, education, and positive identity development programs.

This year’s 2017 Awards event honoured “Insecure” creator, actress, writer and producer, Issa Rae; (Star Power Award), actress and activist, Yara Shahidi (Young Gifted and Black Award); GRAMMY Award-winning songstress, Roberta Flack (Living Legend Award); Wall Street powerhouse and pioneer; Suzanne Shank (Shot Caller Award); Community organizers Derrica Wilson and Natalie Wilson of The Black & Missing Foundation (Community Change Agent Award) and Congress woman Maxine Waters (Social Humanitarian Award).

More than a hashtag: #BlackGirlsRock 2017 Awards
Taraji P. HensonDia Dipasupil/Getty Images

The wonderful and irrepressible Taraji P. Henson hosted this year’s awards. When asked what the awards mean to her, she said: “I’m honoured to host the awards.  I love the message and I love Beverly Bond and her vision. I was lucky to be honoured in 2011. It is truly a highlight of my life. Now I’m back to being part of this amazing night to honour the strong and powerful Mxine Waters, Yara, Issa Rae, Roberta, Suzanne, Derrica and Natalie. Let’s make history together as we come together as women of brains, beauty and in support of each other.”

The Black Girls Rock 2017 Awards will be screened on Tuesday 22 August on BET.

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