BY ALYSSA MAHADEO
Here we are in a new year, with new goals and one inspiring vision. The arduous mission of changing the world for the better and creating a better, brighter future falls to the citizens that inhabit the earth.
On Monday January 18th inside Jamaica National, an exclusive group of community leaders were invited to participate in an open discussion to talk about a new vision, one that promises to undertake the exciting task of focusing on the community and implementing new ideas to create a better more impactful future.
This elite gathering dubbed Community Leader Mixer hosted by Jamaica National Building Society and the Toronto Caribbean Newspaper and included some easily recognizable names of active community leaders such as Vivion Scully, Warren Salmon, Linden King, Philip Rose, Dewitt Lee, Mary Galvan, Alain Arthur and Ash Silva. These individuals are thoroughly involved or are leaders of organizations dedicated to implementing new and awe-inspiring ideas. This conversation was organized to allow the Toronto Caribbean Newspaper to share their vision of being a community focused newspaper, presenting their platform as a way to reach out to those willing to help make that vision a reality.
The evening commenced with an introduction and welcoming of those invited, by Jamaica National Chief Executive Officer Jerrold Johnson sharing a little bit about Jamaica National and their own undertaking to help foster the Jamaican Diaspora living in Canada. Everyone in the room was asked to stand and introduce themselves informing everyone of who they are, which organization they work for and what type of work they are involved with in the community. Each individual, brought something unique to the table and it prompted important discussions about similar ideas, joining forces and working together as one unit.
The Toronto Caribbean Newspaper, launched their new vision at the beginning of this year hoping to start a movement to creating a necessary and beneficial communication as a community effort. At the center of that mission you will find local organizations fueled by dedicated people who are passionate about building a better future for all of us. They celebrate community-based organizations through the influence of our platforms resources, time and talent. In organizing this meeting we hope that together we can build the right foundation for our community and leave our mark in society.
By utilizing the platform of The Toronto Caribbean Newspaper it will offer a voice through which the community can share and communicate their ideas to promote positive change. By starting from within the Caribbean community we can work together and expand on ideas of how we can help create a better tomorrow to be maintained by future generations. Although we are branded as a Caribbean Newspaper, it is important for us to remember that no one race is above the other and we must take pride in the multiculturalism of our city, as it allows for us to experience the diversity of the world.
The ultimate objective of facilitating an event like this was to bring everyone on the same page. Each of these organizations are doing something impactful within the community and there are challenges that they might encounter along the way that could be aided by the support of some of the other organizations who have the means of carrying these projects forward. The information provided was insightful and encourages humanity to conquer intimidating circumstances and celebrate the authenticity of establishing a stronger connection to a healthier tomorrow.
Wise words once foretold that every man is the artisan of his own fortune. When the newspaper was initially launched, Grant and Trish Browning didn’t know what direction they were going to take. However they knew that they were not going to be just another community newspaper. Over the years, working with people and forming partnerships with companies like Jamaica National they manifested into something amazing and now with this new vision are working towards creating a synergy where together we can do more and benefit all parties involved while also stabilizing the foundation of the community.
Taking this step is a crucial part of what we need to do in order to build a better stronger community. Grant Browning CEO and Founder of the Toronto Caribbean Community explains, “It’s about putting the unity in Community. The newspaper was meant to be an opportunity to start a non-biased and truthful paper without being political.” The response in the community spoke for itself, demonstrating the need for something of this nature that would unite the community towards a common goal. “In promoting positive change, we have since implemented events like the Toronto Caribbean Business Expo, Women Empowered and Business Features in the community.” These things have yielded amazing results and feedback from people who are thankful that they are being noticed, uplifted and more importantly being recognized for the work that they do every single day.
The power and reach of the media has the ability to start a ripple effect where “Building a stronger community is possible, you just have to start small and make a difference. We want people to see the power of the community and the strength of the community and the only way that can happen is by working together.
If you were not in attendance and would like to find out more information, or would like to get involved, please contact Grant Browning from The Toronto Caribbean Newspaper at email@example.com or Jerrold Johnson from Jamaica National Building Society at Jerrold@jnbs.com.
Be proud of the work and the possibilities of what we can do when we all work towards the same goals, band together and see how we can make things possible.