Updated: Jun 13
The Michaëlle Jean Foundation announces the preliminary program for the National Black Canadians Summit (#NBCS2022) in Halifax
Exclusion is violence. Racism undermines and devastates lives. We want justice, equity, human rights, social harmony and inclusion to triumph over prejudice and hate in Canada.
At the third National Black Canadians Summit, Canadians will come from across the country to Halifax, Nova Scotia, to share their experiences, challenges and actions, and to speak out on what needs to change - how we can and must do better.
The Summit will be held over three days at the Halifax Convention Centre, July 29-31, 2022, on the eve of the activities and celebrations of August 1st, Emancipation Day, a moment that celebrates strength and determination of Black communities in Canada.
The Summit’s workshops, roundtables, plenaries, discussions, information booths and proceedings will be aligned with the principal values of the UN International Decade for People of African Descent (2015-2024): Recognition, Justice and Development.
An initiative of the Michaëlle Jean Foundation, this large-scale mobilization event allows for a truly national and inclusive dialogue because creating a just, equitable and inclusive society must be a shared responsibility and everyone's business. Everyone has a role to play in deconstructing the overwhelming racial discrimination around the world, including in Canada.
Throughout the Summit, honest conversations will be had about rights to be reclaimed, barriers to be broken down, and the devastating impacts of racism on mental health and living conditions. We will engage in discourse on the critical need to address the deficit related to the exclusion of Blacks in the economic and entrepreneurial and decision-making spaces. Join us to participate in the discussions among dynamic and courageous young people, community leaders, institutional actors, parliamentarians, inspiring personalities, creators, artists and renowned experts
DAY 1 Friday, July 29
The Summit will be held under the auspices of the Mi'kmaq people, on their ancestral lands, the Mi'kma'ki territory, with pride in their welcoming traditions and the recognition that we are all treaty peoples. Halifax, the cradle of the Black presence in Canada, goes back more than 450 years. A history that African Nova Scotians are eager to share with a tour of cultural and historical sites and landmarks.
Youth delegates will be engaged in writing and creative workshops around the Summit themes Recognition, Justice and Development. The opening ceremony will set the tone for the Summit. As so fittingly put by the former Governor-General of Canada, the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean, of Haitian origin and the first Afro-descendant woman to hold this high office:
"The importance of this movement, this gathering convened by Black communities nationwide cannot be understated. Pain and joy will coexist in every word, every idea, every testimony, everything will be said from the heart, as we address some of the most serious problems and issues we face in our country, as we also highlight the value of our actions, our accomplishments, our strengths, our perseverance and courage”.
DAY 2 Saturday, July 30
The day will begin with a plenary session in which the voice of the poets will be honored, for the Power of the Arts has always been a valuable weapon in our resistance. We will be featuring Poetic Power, the brilliant contemporary Poet Laureates Randell Adjai (Ontario) and Titilope Sonuga (Edmonton), as well as former Halifax Poet Laureate, Afua Cooper. The Foundation is also pleased to announce that Stephan James and Shamier Anderson, actors, producers, and co-founders of The Black Academy, will be interviewed by Fabienne Colas, award-winning actress, filmmaker and founder of numerous film festivals, for a rich discussion on representation in the film industry and more. Afterwards, the Summit will get into full swing with workshops and plenary sessions.
DAY 3 Sunday July 31
The highlight of the National Black Canadians Summit will be the adoption of the Halifax Declaration which will bring together the focal points of the discussions and deliberations, the strategic directions of the mobilization, the recommendations and the expectations. A special delegation of UN representatives will join the Summit for a global impact of the Declaration.
The Foundation wants to help as many delegates as possible to have their voices heard and participate fully in the #NBCS2022. Thanks to the generosity of one of our champions, Mr. John Beck, registration is free for youth delegates, under the age of 30.
The Summit also strategically involves the participation of numerous stakeholders, financial, academic and cultural institutions, civil society organizations, professional associations and decision-makers from the public and private sectors. The Foundation is grateful for the support of the United Nations and the unanimous support of the Legislative Assembly and Government of the Province of Nova Scotia. We also thank our presenting partner, TD Bank through its TD Ready Commitment program.
We cannot say enough about the unwavering and extraordinary contributions of all those partners since 2019: the members of the National Black Canadians Summit General Committee and the sub-committees, the members of the Halifax Declaration Committee, the teams of the 2021-2022 Summit Virtual Series, the African Nova Scotian Affairs (ANSA), the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, Majda International, the City of Halifax, Sobeys and the Canada Council for the Arts.
The Foundation is also pleased to welcome CBC/Radio-Canada, the national public broadcaster, as this 2022 Summit media partner.
Tickets are available at https://www.blackcanadiansummit.ca/.
About the Foundation
The Michaëlle Jean Foundation was born out of the actions taken to support youth, the arts, and culture by the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean throughout her mandate with the help of her husband, Mr. Jean-Daniel Lafond, philosopher-filmmaker and writer. The Michaëlle Jean Foundation, which is the legacy of the 27th Governor-General of Canada, was established in 2010. It is a national charitable organization that uses a unique model of intervention, based on the power of the arts, dialogue, innovation, education, creative and social entrepreneurship, to help young Canadians across the country who are experiencing exclusion. The Foundation has successfully created programs such as the "National Forum on the Power of the Arts", the "4th Wall, Making the Invisible Visible" in partnership with numerous cultural institutions across the country, "Youth, Arts and Justice" and the "National Black Canadians Summit ".
Michaëlle Jean Foundation
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