Public Source Publishes Brown Mamas’ Stories

Our mamas’ stories matter. A sentiment that Public Source, a nonprofit newsroom that covers Pittsburgh with context, has echoed since we began The Brown Mama Monologues in 2018.

Executive Director, Mila Sanina, attended our very first rehearsal in Fall of 2018. She believed in the women’s stories and wanted to hear more. She joked with me that I would need more seats, and she was right.

Two years and two sold-out venues later, and Public Source has published 5 of our moms’ stories. From boys with dreams deferred by police brutality to homeschooling and being a mom with a disability, Mila and Public Source have given our mamas an online space to tell Pittsburgh like it is from a black mothering perspective in their First Person stories section. Check out their stories below.

Conversations black parents are forced to have

by Delmesha Richards

Delmesha Richards, pictured in the living room of her home, writes about the conversations she will need to have with her black sons about their skin color and how it may affect their daily lives. (Photo by Maranie R. Staab/PublicSource)

Throughout my adult life, I’ve heard on more occasions than I care to count that, as a black mother, I’ll inevitably arrive at the need for various conversations with my children that white parents will never be required to have with theirs. Read More…

My multiple identifies as a deaf, black mom allow me to connect on a different level

by Brandi Lee

Brandi Lee (left) plays with her sons, 10-year-old Aaron (right) and 5-year-old Manny, at Legion Memorial Park in Brighton Heights. (Photo by Kat Procyk/PublicSource)

It doesn’t matter if you’ve gone through 25 years of your life with 75% hearing loss. I’ll never forget the day I woke up five years ago and found that glorious and final quarter of my hearing gone. Read More…

For us, homeschooling is the only option because of America’s incompetency in educating black children

by Muffy Mendoza

Muffy Mendoza and her three sons — (left to right) Mackell, Jair and Phillip — sit for a portrait on the front porch of their home in Sheridan. (Photo by Maranie R. Staab/PublicSource)

I don’t like homeschooling my three sons. There, I said it. I’m not a Pinterest mom. I’m not a mom who enjoys crafting and making goo out of borax and food coloring. I didn’t homeschool my three Black sons because I wanted to do it. I decided to do it because I was afraid. I was very afraid. Read More…

The police officers behind the senseless killings nationwide are not only bad examples, they’re dream killers

by Tiffany Huff-Strothers

Tiffany T. Huff-Strothers hugs her son Dion as they sit on the front steps of their Coraopolis home. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

For as long as I can remember, my son Dion has wanted to be a football player and a policeman (and a pizza maker and a race car driver).

His love for football was divinely deposited in him; if I hadn’t been there, I would believe he’d been born with a football in his arms. Read More…

Being a ‘momtrepreneur’ is a lot to juggle. But, my sons and I have made a pact to take the journey together

by Andrea Barber

Andrea Barber started My Three Sons Vending in October 2015. The healthy vending machine business has been a journey for the whole family. (Photo by Kat Procyk/PublicSource)

I’m juggling a lot: My own business. My three boys and what seems like all-day potty talk. Economic adversity. And recovery from cervical cancer.

Though as I’m writing this it’s sunny and the birds are chirping, my day in and day out is no walk in the park. Read More…

Wanna hear more stories? All of the stories from The Brown Mama Monologues are published right here on our website. Click here to listen to the vast experiences of our Brown Mamas.

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Muffy Mendoza is a motivational speaker, author, tribe builder and overall awesome communicator. Most notably, Muffy is known for having cultivated a community of nearly 4,000 African-American moms hungry for social change when she noticed a lack of community among Black mothers in the Pittsburgh region. She created Brown Mamas, a sisterhood that connects moms with resources, advice and, best of all, each other. To further fill the void Muffy has created a line of educational products focused on helping Black moms be the best moms, too. Her first book, The Brown Mama Mindset: A Blueprint for Black Moms on Life, Love & Home, was featured at the 2018 Essence Festival and is currently sold in various cities across the U.S. Muffy champions the beauty of Black motherhood everywhere she goes, even on the TEDx stage. She received a standing ovation at the inaugural TEDx Strip District after giving a compelling depiction of modern day Black motherhood. From the TEDx stage she went on to create a stage for other Black moms. That same year she debuted the first annual Brown Mama Monologues showcase to an audience of over 200 moms. When she’s low-key, Muffy loves reading African history books, forcing her kids to watch most boring documentaries and snuggling with her best friend and husband Mr. Mack Mendoza. You can learn more about Muffy at or