TRACY HENDRIX - ROLE MODEL & AMBASSADOR
Officially Inducted into the “National Wall of Role Models” on June 7, 2014 ( See full list www.BlackCanadianAwards.com )
Tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am Canadian-born citizen with parents of Ghanaian decent. I am currently a student at George Brown College in my final year in a degree of social services for abused women and children (as well as rape crisis victims). Also, I am also an ambassador for a non-profit organization in Ghana called "Awal's Children of the Future". This agency provides food and clothing for orphans across Accra, Ghana.
On a part-time basis, I model and host events and programs within the community. As well, I have my own Jewelry collection in the pipeline to be launched later on this year. When I travel to Ghana, I do some motivational speaking to inspire and motivate young girls.
What's your inspiration or how do you get motivated?
My inspiration is my dear mother she is my backbone and strength. She has taught me through tough times all things are possible. She made the sun shine even when it was raining! When I think of what she has gone through and where she is now it motivates me to be the best I can be.
How did you get to where you are now and what more should we expect?
I thank God for placing me where I am now. I also thank my mother. I was raised by a single mother who worked extremely hard to make ends meet. My mother always gave me that extra push in life to strive to be the best. As an infant I witnessed my mother get abused and I also witnessed her change her situation and leave. This embedded the passion of helping young girls and women who are in these current situations to let them know there is a light at the end of the tunnel. I discovered the Abused Women and Children (AWCCA) course at George Brown College which clicked with me immediately.
As for the non-profit organization I was introduced to the founder, Awal Alahassan through my husband Ahkan from the African-International duo Ruff N Smooth. Awal is a close friend as well as a musical engineer. My husband is aware of my dream and aspirations so he felt I could be of great help to the organization by bringing ideas and proposals in conjunction with helping young women hands on.
In the near future, I expect that I will continue helping young women on a wide scale and range of horizons worldwide. I also want to vocalize internationally the harm and effect of abuse on people, especially children.
What would you like to be remembered for?
I would like to be remember for the hard work and effort I’ve given back to my community. As well as my dedication to help the less fortunate across the motherland.
How do you balance work, family, friends and leisure?
The balance is difficult but I am extremely good with time management and scheduling. The most important thing is to always have time for yourself and family. Self care is keen in my field of work because the stress levels can be high at times so when I need a break, I take it.
What's your favorite food, book, music and movie?
My favorite foods are traditional dishes such as banku, fufu and jollof or anything Italian. My favorite book is "The Coldest Winter Ever" by Sista Souljah (a very inspiring story). My favorite movie is "Mohammad Ali" starring Will Smith and "Malcolm X" starring Denzel Washington.
What's your experience as a Black person in Canada?
I have experienced both positive and negative aspects of being a "Black female". Canada has a wide range of cultures under its belt which has given us the title of being multicultural. Overall, my experience has been a positive one. I see myself being rewarded for the effort I’ve put into my work, education and community involvement. Also, being recognized within the community (i.e. Black Canadians) makes me extremely proud and encourages me to press on. As for the negative side of being a Black female, I find racism within our own culture with regards to how light or dark-skinned you are. The names we called each other also causes self-harm to ourselves. We need to love one another and comfort one another, instead of trying to break each other down.
What is the Black community doing right or wrong in Canada?
I believe our older generation is really making an effort to unify the younger generation. There are also a lot of people who want to make a difference but the problem is ‘are we really listening?’ I believe as we continue to voice our thoughts, we will eventually get to where we want to be. We need to build each other up instead of tearing each other down.
Are there as many opportunities for Blacks in Canada that can produce role models and institutions like Beyonce, Tyler Perry, Obama, BET, etc?
To be honest, no. There are not as many opportunities but it is a possibility. In the U.S., they have a predominantly Black culture within certain states which allows more opportunities for black role models and institutions. They are able to stand and fight for one cause. Canada is a different place but we do have our benefits because we are multicultural haven. I believe change is coming and not far. We have Black role models of our own but our community just needs to unify and come together.
What is your understanding of Black History in Canada?
Black History in Canada is undermined and ignored especially in schools. Black History is shortened and compressed into something minor. I found myself taking extra courses in college to gain further understanding and knowledge on our history. I also did personal research of my own on my homeland Ghana to truly understand the roots of our ancestors.