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Canadian Black Caucus honours US president with Obama Day

17 February 2012 No Comments

Obama Day Celebration. January 20, 2012. (left to right) Aliyaah Matthew Chapman, Matthew Tulloch, Amaala Chapman, Yannick Tshiamala, McCair Tulloch and Gwyn Chapman


By Samuel Getachew

Under the backdrop of great American black political history, the Canadian Black Caucus is using the success of Barack Obama to make Canadian history.

The caucus recently held its third Obama Day Celebration at the Holy Trinity Church in downtown Toronto.

According to founder Gwyn Chapman, the caucus is on a determined mission to “empower the large diverse black population of Canada to be politically active, educate them the importance of voting on a regular basis and also encourage the community to have more black candidates.”

The event is meant to honour the legacies of historical trailblazers who paved the way for President Obama such as Harriet Tubman, Marcus Garvey, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King. In a room filled with great personalities from all walks of life, the evening celebrated a slew of activists and leaders from Toronto’s strong black communities paying tributes to these great historical figures.

Award-winning artist Liberty Silver, newly elected MPP and Ontario Minister Michael Couteau, radio personality Spider Jones, one-time Toronto mayoral candidates Rocco Achampong and Adam Giambrone were some of the impressive speakers. They each reflected on lives lived as well as what inspires them as they celebrate Black History Month.

Cameron Cadogan speaks as McCair Tulloch and emcee Amaala Chapman look on

The evening, which Gwyn Chapman describes as an “absolutely inspiring family affair,” ended on a high note with great music, art, inspiring speeches from many young people. In words and deeds, each speaker highlighted the need to be engaged and active in Canada’s political system.

At the end, it was a 17-year-old youth leader, Amaala Chapman,  who eloquently reflected the pulse and message of the evening, “Never give up, ’cause if one gives up, tough times will always last.”


Photos courtesy of Gwyn Chapman.

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