To Be A Young, Gifted and Black Canadian…

“‘Cause you know in the whole wide world There’s a million, a million boys and girls Who are young, gifted, gifted, and black…and its sho’nuff where it’s at.” ~Donny Hathaway

No introduction needed. If you’re reading this, it’s because I’ve asked you to so, we’re already somewhat “connected”.
I decided to begin this BLOG because as a concerned parent and as a “writer”, this seems like the best vehicle to share my woes while simultaneously becoming part of the solution instead of just complaining about the problem. Hopefully.

I’m learning that being a young, gifted and black Canadian living Ontario can be a whirlwind of confusion…
Donny Hathaway is rolling around in his effing grave.

Problem: Our Black Canadian youth are not being formally exposed to North American Black Literature and therfore they are not learning from the very foundation for a healthy Black Canadian identity.

“Why is this a problem?” you may find yourselves asking. In my humble opinion Dear Reader; Through no fault of their own, many of our children are completely in the dark about what it truly means to be Black in Canada. They lack the pride, protection and feeling of belonging accociated with the connection to a community. This gap in their idendity as young Canadians is at a detriment to their entire sense of self. This is a problem no?

Solution: Exposing our children and PEERS to the vast body of historical and contemporary literature writen by black authors, poets and play writes dedicated to documenting and thus preserving the North American cultural black experience and the African diaspora.

“How is this a solution?” again you may find yourself questioning. Once again in my humble opinion Dear Reader; By and through educating our children and PEERS who may ultimately engage in educating their children and the children of their peers, we begin to build and promote positive self image and a knowledgable, healthy connection to the Black Canadian identity. My friends, that community is beautifully vast…

Where to begin? Hopefully this “BLOG” might be the catalyst for conversations which need to be held, for support which needs to be given and for the universe of black literature to open up and immerse our children and help them to become well-rounded, confident and WHOLE individuals.
I want to start here. I want to share here.
~Rachelle

 

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Filed under Black Canadian, Education

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