By Lincoln DePradine
A group of Caribbean immigrants is preparing to mark an important milestone in a struggle that led to a change in Canadian law that opened the way for greater emigration to the country by Black people.
On April 27, 1954, a delegation led by Barbadian-born Donald Willard Moore visited Ottawa to protest the federal government’s restrictive immigration policy and presented a brief to then citizenship and immigration minister, Walter E. Harris. Within years, the Canadian government repealed measures that excluded some people from entering the country based on racial origin.
Moore’s efforts, and the 65th anniversary of the delegation’s Ottawa visit, will be remembered at a fundraiser in support of the “Moore Scholarship’’ at George Brown College.
“Journeying Onward’’ is the title of April 7 fundraising luncheon organized by the Donald Willard Moore Scholarship Association.
Barbadian-Canadian Keith Forde, retired Deputy Chief of the Toronto Police Service, is the keynote speaker for the event that will be held at Lara’s Restaurant, 155 Consumers Road, Unit 106.
Moore, a business owner who was invested into the Order of Canada in 1990, had initially planned on becoming a dentist by enrolling at Dalhousie University. However, illness forced him to abort his university study program.
The Moore Scholarship is open to students in George Brown’s nursing and business programs. “Each year, we give at least one scholarship. This year, we’re giving two,’’ Angela Carter, a member of the Donald Willard Moore Scholarship Association, told The Caribbean Camera.
The purpose of the scholarship, established on Moore’s 100th birthday in 1992, is to “address the significant barriers that the Afro-Canadian and or Afro-Caribbean community faces in accessing post-secondary education’’.
“A group decided that his legacy should be carried on and they set about raising funds for an endowment at George Brown College to offer annual scholarships,’’ Carter explained.
Altogether, 23 scholarships have been disbursed. The first was awarded at George Brown’s1993 convocation.
“What we do is encourage patrons to donate directly to the George Brown College Foundation which issues tax receipts,’’ said Carter.
Moore died in 1994 at 102.