America has recognized Caribbean-American Heritage Month annually since 2006. The Caribbean-American Heritage Foundation Inc. (CAHFI) was founded in 2007 by Asa Sealy, a Trinidadian-American and Brad Hemmings who is of Jamaican and Trinidadian descent to promote awareness and recognition of Caribbean-Americans and their contributions to the United States.
“We are here and we have been here for years” Sealy, the president of the foundation explained. “In this great age of diversity we are seeing a woman and an African-American run for president for the first time in history…right?”
“Wrong.” Hemmings added “did you know that a Congresswoman from New York ran as the first major party African-American candidate for President in 1972?” Shirley Chisholm, the history maker Hemmings and Sealy were referring to was not only African-American and female but also of Caribbean descent; her mother was born in Barbados and her father from Guyana.
CAHFI’S founders plan to raise awareness of Chisholm and other Caribbean-Americans by presenting workshops and events. Their inaugural event the “Trinbago Village”, a community fun zone at the ING Marathon took place in downtown Miami on January, 27th. The event enjoyed the full support of notable community leaders and celebrities including the Honorable Gerard Green, Trinidad and Tobago’s Counsel General to Miami, Arthur Joseph of Deal or No Deal Fame and Adam Diaz, the General Manager of Caribbean Airlines in Miami.
Sealy and Hemmings both draw from their years of combined experience as event planners to create enlightening culturally driven events. Upcoming events on CAHFI ‘S schedule include a presentation at North Miami Senior High school in March and a Caribbean-American Arts Exhibit in collaboration with the African American Research Library and Cultural Center in June. To learn more about these events and the Caribbean-American Heritage Foundation Inc. visit their website at www.cahfi.org.