Broadcast to feature speeches from black leaders and performances from Black artists from the U of O community
The University of Ottawa will match every donation up to $25,000 made to the University of Ottawa Students’ Union (UOSU) and Black Student Leaders Association (BSLA) Black Expression: Listen. Speak. Amplify broadcast. The event aims to celebrate Black excellence and talent.
“I think the involvement of the University is a great step, and they should take more action to ‘put their money where their mouth is’,” wrote UOSU president Babacar Faye to the Fulcrum. “I look forward to seeing the University invest in more Black spaces.”
The broadcast will feature speeches from Black leaders and a number of performances from Black artists from across the U of O community.
The UOSU and BSLA have been promoting all week different artists with various talents on their social media accounts. The broadcast will feature performances from Dana-Kaye Matthews a fourth-year public administration and political science student who will perform poems, Mélodie Higgs, a third-year francophone theater student who will perform a live painting and Tatiana Haustant a third-year student in political science and public administration who will demonstrate her talents on the violin that she refined in the European Youth Orchestra in Italy as well as many others.
“The goal of Black Expression: Listen. Speak. Amplify is to unite the community and celebrate the Black excellence and talent of various Black artists, student leaders, and organizations,” wrote Jin Baiye, co-president of the BSLA in a message to the Fulcrum. “It’s important that we remember as Black people that we are much more than the tragedies we see on the news so frequently, that’s why this space is for embracing our realities but also much-deserved healing and enjoyment.”
The event’s organizers have already amassed upwards of $2,750 in donations. The donations will go to support five Black charitable organizations; Justice for Abdirahman, Black History Ottawa, the Canadian Anti-Racism Network, the Congress of Black Women of Canada, and the Ontario Region; Black Artists Union. People will be able to donate up to two days after the end of the broadcast. The goal is to collect $25,000 so the University matches it and the organizers collect $50,000.
“We are thankful for the University’s commitment to match donations and we hope that the university will continue to support Black initiatives and students once the media stops watching,” Baiye wrote.
Black Expression: Listen. Speak. Amplify will be broadcasted live on Facebook by both organizations today at 4 p.m. It is free to attend, up to now over 150 people have pledged to attend the event on Facebook.