Award winner Yomi Pratt, centre, with Suzette Small-Weekes, left and Daniel Stringer, right.

Event honours individuals whose unwavering commitment to justice and human rights have transformed lives and inspired change.

Thursday 4 April 2024

by Obasola Bamgbola

On April 4th, 2024, the Room Richelieu/Frontenac at the Delta Hotel in Ottawa radiated with hope and unity as the DreamKEEPERS 19th Annual Award Ceremony for Racial Harmony and Human Rights unfolded, under the tutelage of Ottawa’s leading social justice advocate, Daniel Stringer. Dedicated to advancing the vision of the late civil rights icon, Martin Luther King Jr., this esteemed event brought together community leaders, activists, and advocates to honour individuals whose unwavering commitment to justice has transformed lives and inspired change.

The ceremony’s highlight was the captivating keynote address delivered by the esteemed Hon. Margarett Best. With grace and conviction, Hon. Best shared her insights on the challenges and triumphs of the ongoing struggle for racial equality. Drawing upon her own experiences as a champion for social justice, she urged attendees to remain steadfast in their commitment to building a more inclusive and equitable society. Her words resonated deeply with the audience, igniting a renewed sense of determination and solidarity.

Central to the ceremony were the presentations of three prestigious awards, each honouring individuals whose remarkable contributions have advanced the cause of racial harmony and human rights.

Abayomi Moses PrattOutstanding Leadership Award. For his unwavering commitment to the Black community within the national capital region. As a prominent community organiser, Moses has inspired others to join him in serving people and the community. Yomi as he is popularly known, is founder and President of the Global Community Alliance.

Award winner Gelila Geremew, centre with Sonjay Mohanta, left, and Daniel Stringer, right

Gelila Geremew – June Girvan Youth in Service Award:. A beacon of hope for the youth, she was honoured for her exceptional dedication to community service. Through her tireless efforts with the Jaku Konbit, Gelila has empowered her peers to become agents of positive change, embodying the spirit of Dr. King’s vision for a better world.

Award winner Carol Daley-Campbell, centre, with Daniel Stringer, right

Carol Daley-Campbell – Michelle Obama North Star Beloved Community’ Award. Carol Daley-Campbell, a tireless champion of unity and compassion, was honoured for her transformative impact on fostering inclusive and welcoming communities. Through her advocacy and bridge-building efforts, Carol has brought people together across divides, embodying the ideals of Dr. King’s beloved community.

Award winners Carol Daley-Campbell, Yomi Pratt and Gelila Geremew

The DreamKEEPERS 19th Annual Award Ceremony concluded on a note of inspiration and determination, leaving attendees energized and empowered to continue the fight for racial harmony and human rights in their communities and beyond. As they departed, the spirit of Dr. King’s vision lingered in the air, a reminder that together, we can build a world where all are treated with dignity, respect, and love.

Obasola Bamigbola

Veteran photographer and reporter Obasola Bamigbnola relocated to Canada from Nigeria in 2023 and now calls Ottawa home.