International Decade for People of African Descent
On November 27, 2021, Citizens for the Advancement of Community Development (CACD) will present a day-long celebration in support of the UN General Assembly Proclamation that 2015 to 2024 to be the International Decade for People of African Descent, with the theme “People of African descent: recognition, justice and development”. In this way, we hope to support the community in confronting racism and discrimination of all kinds by promoting diverse heritage, multicultural, interfaith, and providing everyone with the chance to engage fully in Canadian society.
The theme of the event by acclamation is “People of African Descent: Recognition, Justice and
Development.” CACD aims to use this event to emphasize issues of equitable opportunities, diversity and inclusion, disparities and challenges faced by “racialized population and visible minorities”. Further, we intend to work towards the eradication of social injustices inherited from history and to fight against racism, prejudice, and racial discrimination to which people of African descent are still subjected.
The day-long celebration will showcase discussions (Youth and Adults), afro-fusion fashion shows, video and live presentations on the trans-Atlantic slave trade, and entertainment and speeches when collectively the eradication of social injustices, racism, prejudice, and racial discrimination will be greatly emphasized. In this celebration, attendees will get the opportunity to participate directly in the discussions by being able to ask and have their questions answered and by providing feedbacks through breakout rooms on the above issues.
The youth and adult panel discussions will address racism, social injustices, prejudice, and racial
discrimination etc. Further, with the youth involvement, we hope to nurture their leadership capacities, providing them (young people) with the skills to build just communities and initiate policy changes to address structural dehumanization. They will also explore practical steps to empower and engage communities and public institutions in collective healing.
The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade segment will seek to honour the memory of the victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade via video and a presentation by renowned scholars of history. It’s
imperative to embark on a collective journey towards healing transgenerational trauma and the
importance of systemic transformation. We hope this will inspire attendees to learn from the histories of slavery, acknowledge the harms of structural injustice and institutional racism, and promote inclusion, pluralism, and intercultural dialogue. In addition, it will include ‘historians of slavery, scholars in race studies, and experts in racial healing, emphasizing the psychosocial legacy of the slave trade and slavery.
The Afro-fusion fashion show will see designers from the black community showcasing their designs or collections in a live virtual fashion show. The designs will demonstrate how African fashion is fused with mainstream fashion. The fashion pieces will be accompanied by traditional matching hairstyles of people of African descent which will demonstrate the status of the females in possibly African tribes. There will be a verbal description of the outfit and the hairstyle as a means of increasing knowledge and building awareness of the audience about the contribution of people of African descent to mainstream fashion.
Finally, this event will culminate with entertainment and speeches, an elaborate exposition of songs from renowned vocalists, dancers, African and Caribbean drumming to exemplify the power of music for healing and cultural transformation. This will be accompanied by greetings from dignitaries.