Dr. Mary Anne Chambers, Chancellor of Guelph University, told a gathering at last Sunday’s Caribbean Impact Awards ceremony that “challenges and hardship certainly exist and will always exist.
“But I believe it’s how we deal with the challenges and the hardship that defines us and also makes us stronger and more likely to persist, ultimately making progress or achieving success.”
Dr. Chambers who was delivering the feature address at the Impact Awards 2022 ceremony at the Ontario Science Centre, said “we must believe in ourselves and we must believe in and invest in our children and youth.
“I disagree with the saying that our young people are our future. They are very much the present, today’s reality, and must be today’s priority as we help them develop genuine confidence in themselves, become resilient and make their own positive contributions to society.
“That’s the formula for achieving and sustaining the quality of life that I think we would all like to experience,” she added.
Dr. Chambers noted that “it is important for us to recognize those who are making life better for others.
“I am sure that each of you in this room can think of a way in which you have positively impacted someone else’s life. Your impact might seem small in your mind but what really matters is what it has meant to someone else, perhaps a child, a neighbour, a stranger.”
She said that “acknowledgement shines the light on role models and good deeds.
“Acknowledgement encourages those who are being recognized as well as others who deserve to be recognized, to continue to make a positive impact on our society.
“I have heard it said that when we light someone else’s candle, we make the room brighter for all of us.
“That should always be our goal,” she said
In a message, read by Jasse “J.C.” McDonald, official “Voice of the Awards,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau thanked The Caribbean Camera and the Black Indigenous Business Development Association- organizers of the Impact Awards – “for taking the initiative to create these awards and for recognizing some outstanding members of their community.”
Trudeau also extended congratulations to the awardees.
“Your achievements, compassion, knowledge, skills, and talent are inspirations for all,” he said.
“I hope that this event gives you the opportunity to take a well-deserved moment of self-recognition for all that you have done and achieved,” he told them.
“Please accept my deepest gratitude for everything that you do for your community and your country,” he added.
Six individuals and two organizations were presented with the IMPACT Awards 2022.
The awardees were:
Tony Sharpe – SPORTS
Joel “Connector” Davis – ARTS AND CULTURE
Kirk Diamond – ENTERTAINMENT
The CEE Centre For Young Black Professionals – COMMUNITY
The Black Scientists’ Task Force on Vaccine Equity – HEALTH
Louis Saldenah – CARNIVAL ARTS
Kandy Samsundar and Colleen Russell-Rawlins – EDUCATION
Canada-based calypsonian David Rudder was one of several Caribbean artistes who performed at the event.
Anthony Joseph, publisher of The Caribbean Camera, thanked “all those who supported Impact Awards 2022.
“For me, it was a dream come true – a dream that showed its colours in its Caribbean diversity.
“We now look forward to Impact Awards 2023.”
M.C. was Toronto bookstore owner Itah Sadu.
Look out for a special commemorative issue featuring the Impact Awards