Diane Guerrero has made a name for herself as an actress and immigrants rights activist and continues to advocate for positive change. Over the weekend the Orange is the New Black actress teamed up withSmirnoff to help raise the bar(re) for Women’s History Month. As part of the brand’s ongoing commitment to the Black community, Smirnoff is partnering with Washington, D.C.-based fitness studio, and Black women-owned small business, SideBarre, to give hundreds of adults (21+) across the US the chance to attend a series of complimentary inspirational virtual barre classes from home in support of Black women entrepreneurs across the country. Smirnoff has made an overarching $500k commitment to the Black Community and is pledging $50,000 from those dollars to Black Girl Ventures – a charitable organization whose goal is to provide access to community and capital for Black and Brown women identifying business founders. HOLA! USA had the opportunity to talk to Guerrero before the event about why this partnership was so important to her, what she hopes for the future, and what she loves to listen to when she works out. Read the exclusive interview below and find the recipes for the delicious Smirnoff cocktails we made at the event that you can make at home.
You know, I love partnering with companies that are pushing inclusivity and wellness and also fun (laughs) so this is exactly what I need, all the time. So you know I‘m really excited for this project because it’s exactly what I’ve needed. This pandemic has been really rough for a lot of people, including myself and now we’re sort of kind of getting back to normal but we’re still indoors and it’s hard. You know I haven’t been able to take classes and I know a lot of my friends haven’t been able to go out as much as they would like to so I think it’s a really good opportunity for us to get together and remember that we have a community out there of people who are going through something together and are wanting to come to the light together and what a great opportunity to do it with a barre class and supporting women- in particular Black women, it’s such a great opportunity for us to do this and sort of set a precedent for wellness and fun.
Absolutely, I actually feel like I‘m still having my down period. So this is why I’m excited to sort of kick-off my wellness adventure and kind of like come out of the darkness… I’m so happy Smirnoff put this together, I feel like it was just in time, right in time for women’s History Month, Black History Month and celebrating all of the wonderful and beautiful ventures that they will have and are having. I feel like at the beginning I was kind of working out in an unhealthy way. I think I was just going for it because I felt like that was something I could control and of course that wasn’t sustainable. And I wasn’t really going online or taking classes or anything like that because I - I don’t know I felt like I had to deal with this on my own, but that wasn’t sustainable so I kind of fell off and now I’m really looking forward to introducing some new stuff into my routine as well, you know before I was on this working out alone tip and I’m LONELY now. I want to connect with people so this is an exciting way.
I feel like at the beginning I was kind of working out in an unhealthy way. I think I was just going for it because I felt like that was something I could control and of course that wasn’t sustainable. (Guerrero)
Yeah, I actually really realized that. I’ve changed my focus which is alike not to attain this certain body goal but just to be healthy and to make sure it’s enjoyable. That’s why this class on Saturday really means a lot to me.
Access and representation. I think that is really the difference between success and nonsuccess, and wellness and non-wellness. I think it‘s access and opportunity and I think that providing spaces and opportunities like the one that Black Girl Ventures is doing and making sure that we are contributing to organizations like Black Girl Ventures will ensure that we have more equity in all industries. So that’s why I make sure to partner with companies like Smirnoff or organizations like Black Girl Ventures that promote that because we need more of that, we need more people in the conversation, and Black women are very important and we need more of them and more diverse ideas, bringing all that to the table. So I’m definitely a supporter of organizations like Black Girl Ventures and making sure that we contribute to that. So I’m excited, I see a bright future. As long as we continue to make sure that we are providing access and capital- I think that will be able to level the playing field. I mean it’s going to take a lot but it starts with programs like these.
I‘m actually a 90s girl! It’s really funny cause I’m trying to get pumped and listening to- actually no- Alanis Morisset can really pump a girl up and you have such a mix you have some Alanis to TLC to Salt and Pepa so I’m into it, it takes me back to when I was a kid and free.