On Saturday November 24, the Canadian African & Caribbean Committee (CACC) will host its annual “Unsung Heroes Honours Celebration” ceremony under the theme “Together we aspire Together we achieve”, “Out of many one people”. The initiative, which is in its 2nd year, was the brainchild of community activist and media marketer Simone Banton, owner and operator of Total Prayz Media and Marketing group. Conducted in partnership with the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA), the aim of the awards is to identify, reward and encourage youth and adult volunteerism within the Caribbean community.
In its inaugural year, a total of fifty-two (52) awards were presented to individuals and organizations from all walks of life. Legal luminary, musicologist and Pan Africanist “Ras Miguel” Lorne was the keynote speaker from Jamaica. The President of the Marcus Garvey People’s Political Party lauded the efforts of the committee and implored the awardees and audience to remember their African roots and to use Garvey’s message of self-identity, black pride and dignity as a catalyst for socio-economic and political empowerment in Canada.
In keeping with this year’s theme, the key note address will be delivered by 19 year-old dynamo, regional role model and CEO of Caribbean Vision Choc’late Allen from the twin island republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Her message will cover numerous issues affecting our communities such as HIV/AIDS, violence and drug abuse among others.
Nominations for the awards were solicited from the public from February to September 17, 2012 in the categories of: Health Care, Education, Business, Media, Law Enforcement, Arts & Entertainment and Community Leader/Developer. Nominees are screened and vetted by an independent sub-committee to ensure transparency and to certify that awardees are individual(s) whose contributions have not been officially recognised previously and publicly.
Since 2011 the committee has actively sought out to recognise, reward and celebrate members of the Caribbean and African Diaspora. These awardees are modern day heroes, your regular everyday people who dwell among us and toil against the odds and who have demonstrated high character and humanitarianism; and are held up as role models by their peers for their contribution to the welfare and goodwill of their respective communities.
This year’s nominees will be announced at a press conference on Thursday, November 1, 2012 at the Jamaican Canadian Association (JCA) from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Following the presentation, members of the press will be invited to ask questions, in plenum as well as during one-on-one interviews.