“No matter where you’re from your dreams are valid” Lupita Nyong'o Last year, Director of Camp G.L.O.W Grenada, Ayisha Sylvester-John invited me to speak to over 30 girls aged between 14 and 17. Camp G.L.O.W started in 1995 in Romania by Peace Corps Volunteers and is now a worldwide Peace Corps initiative with 21 camps taking place around the world. I was proud to learn that Grenada was the first Eastern Caribbean island to host Camp G.L.O.W in 2012. During the camp, the girls participate in workshops that help them to build their self-esteem, increase their self-awareness and understanding of womanhood and develop skills in goal setting and career planning. Every summer, girls from around the island attend and leave feeling empowered to be great leaders that can make a difference in their community. I shared with them every single dream I had as a child and how I made it a reality. I watched as their faces illuminated with the belief that if someone who looked like them could fulfil their dreams, perhaps they could too. I wrote this blog during the height of the pandemic, inspired by the fact that these four young Grenadians, dreamt of embarking on careers that would put them in front line positions. Jobs that would be so essential in guiding humans through coping with a global health crisis mentally, socially and technologically. This blog is still relevant amid the pandemic against black lives, because the harsh reality is, based on their environment they may endure the most challenging, unexplainable obstacles to fulfil those dreams because of the colour of their skin. I’m sharing the dreams of these four attendees of Camp G.L.O.W on Kiki’s Blog in the hope that it will encourage them to continue to pursue what they dream of becoming. “I…
“Always take a risk once you know you can handle the consequences. It’s important to know the potential pitfalls but don't spend too long thinking about it” - Marc De Caul There are a few things I miss about #LondonLife, like vibrant business hubs and spaces for innovation and creativity with fast broadband. People and social interactions inspire me, so working in a space where there is a constant flow of humankind stimulates idea generation. I’ve finally reached the fulfilling phase of consulting and coffee shops have become my preferred spot for client consultations. My go-to in Grenada is Mocha Spoke, and I’ve probably had most if not all of my meetings at this location and. I’m so grateful to the team for being so accommodating and not turning the tables on me. This month saw the celebrations of International Men’s Day and National Entrepreneurship Day in the US, so in a show of appreciation, I’d like to shine some light on Marc De Caul owner of Mocha Spoke. A sit down with Marc… Kiki: So tell me Marc, how has your upbringing shaped you into the man you are today? Marc: I come from a family of hardworking people, and that’s the only way of life I’ve ever known. My grandfather travelled from St. Vincent to Grenada and built Deco Industries, which offered services in textiles, wholesale, printing and gas stations. He is well into his eighties, and he is still working to grow and diversify the business. My parents, who are also business owners, are approaching retirement, and instead of thinking about hobbies they are working on the next big project. This level of ambition and grit has undoubtedly rubbed off on me. Kiki: Right so the prospect of you owning your own business was inevitable! Marc: Indeed!…
“Cedros Bay is the Caribbean's first All-Natural, Vegan, Cruelty-Free Skincare Line made with 100% Organic Coconut Oil. It's 100% Caribbean and even has recyclable packaging” Sugar, honey I know, the Island girl glow is all you want. Well, I got the ice tea (see what I did there)! All puns aside, let’s get straight to the point on how you can get your natural glow in moisture-sucking conditions. Cue the new Cedros Bay range from Coconut Growers Association (CGA) Limited, Trinidadian manufacturers who have utilised coconut trees far beyond their ability to shade for over 80 years. This year CGA Limited decided the world needed to know how to look like a glowing Caribbean goddess. Which led to the launch of All-Natural, Vegan and Cruelty-Free Skincare Line Cedros Bay. I like to keep it real in this space so when I was gifted the full range of products; I used it every Sunday for four months so I can confirm that my sensitive skin loved it as much as I loved the Island Bags packaging. My favourite product by far is the Coconut Body Scrub! The sugar crystals buff away dead skin cells and the Virgin Coconut oil leave my skin looking and feeling smooth and hydrated. After the scrub, I lather with the Coconut Body Lotion, which includes shea butter, papaya seed and avocado oil which makes me feel, smell and look like the things Caribbean dreams are made of. To be honest, I spend more time sniffing the Coconut Coffee Body Scrub, which puts me in a spa state of mind during my self-care Sunday session. I got the most out of my Coconut Lip Balm while I was in the UK as the sweet Almond oil treated any chapped textures that developed and the Lemon oil…
“With active ingredients like guava, raw sugarcane, wild yam, passion flower and seaweed the Red Lane Spa experience and Red Lane Products were designed with island living in mind! There’s even a range called Spice, inspired by the enchantment and warmth of Grenada and infused with the scent of nutmeg, clove and ylang-ylang.” As a certified spa junkie and firm believer in the importance of a consistent skincare regime, I wish someone told me (before I sealed every single one of my products with masking tape) there’s a huge chance they wouldn’t result in the flawless effect I was so used to when used in a humid Caribbean climate. Cue… my Flawless Facial at Sandals Grenada Resort & Spa, where I discovered Red Lane Spa and Red Lane Products. Ninety glorious minutes at the hands of a fantastic therapist originally from Jamaica, my face, head, back and shoulders regained its radiance. My mind transcended to my favourite majestic place in the West Indies and my body fully rejuvenated by a medley of products and methods inspired by the best remedies and traditions found in the tropics. What’s more, Grenadian residents and Caricom passport holders pay 50% of the regular USD treatment price, which in my view is excellent for such a quality service, and highly trained and skilled spa therapist that has worked throughout the region. Since my transition to the tropics, I’ve battled with finding the right facial skincare. I have an abundance of natural blends of coconut oil based body products, but with oily/combination skin, I’ve been faced with hot and sweaty challenges (no pun intended). Before my treatment, I had a sniff and sample fest with the testers and with active ingredients like ginger, guava, raw sugarcane, wild yam, lemongrass, passion flower and seaweed they certainly complimented…
"I’ve always struggled with being a ‘business owner’ and a ‘boss’ but also being in a bikini on the beach flying drones. I was worried people wouldn’t take me seriously and it didn’t make sense" Name: Monica Walton Age: 29 Cultural heritage: Mixed / Caribbean Place of birth/Resides: The Cayman Islands Kiki: How has your upbringing shaped the woman you are today? Monica: I grew up in a big family with two brothers and sisters. My brothers were closest to my age so we would hang out more, maybe that’s why I’m a bit of a tomboy! I’m so grateful that I was raised to be independent and self-sufficient. It led me to fall in love with learning, growing and facing life's challenges head-on. I’m very career-focused and hope to inspire other women to have the drive to go after their goals. I want everyone to know that they don’t have to accept any situation they are in - if you want something, you have to go after it and carve out your path. Kiki: I love your platform @BeachBoxTV tell me more about what you do? Monica: I run a media company called Vagabond Media Group in Cayman Islands where I get to manage a small team of talented people and help other businesses tell their story through video and creative content. Doing what you love every day is very fulfilling! I love seeing people’s businesses grow, seeing the entrepreneurial journey’s around Cayman and being a part of that. It’s fulfilling making a difference to someone’s life. I love to see women pursuing creative careers, especially in video. I also have an online travel platform called Beachbox (www.beachboxtv.com). It allows me to travel the Caribbean and shoot videos for tourism boards and resorts and have a place to share the…
"Don’t allow your trust in timing to be an excuse for complacency. Go looking for opportunities!" Name: Jeneque Pinnock Age: 23 Place of birth/Residence: Jamaica Kiki: What's your earliest childhood memory growing up in Jamaica? Jeneque: From as early as I can remember, I understood that education, was ‘the great equalizer’ that could change anyone’s circumstances. Neither of my parents went to university and because of that, they instilled the importance of higher education in me. It’s no wonder that during Miss Jamaica World 2017 I was most passionate about tutoring, volunteering and lending my voice to issues of education and youth development. I went on a nine-day trip to Africa through my involvement with the Shashamane Sunrise, a charity and volunteer organisation that supports children’s education in developing countries in Africa and the Caribbean. Our team visited Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda and delivered school supplies and furniture. We contributed to building renovations and interacted with the students through confidence-building exercises. To say it was the experience of a lifetime is putting it lightly! Kiki: We love seeing you live your best life on Instagram. What do you do for a living? Jeneque: For almost 3 years, I worked as an Account Executive at a full-service media, advertising and production company in Jamaica. I’ve always been very passionate about people so I find it fulfilling being in a communication-intensive role, which involves continuous dialogue between clients, stakeholders and other team members. I am currently transitioning into my new role as a Digital Marketing Manager and I’m ready for the challenge! I also love giving back and impacting others in some way. If I can look back on my life during my final days (hopefully many decades from now), and feel like I was able to impact, influence and/or improve the…
“nothing is overnight; the dream is free, but the hustle is sold separately”
Name: Sherice Major
Cultural heritage: Bahamas/Jamaican
Place of birth/Residence: The Bahamas
Kiki: What’s the most distinctive memory you have about your upbringing?
Sherice: I grew up with my aunt, one of the strongest women I’ve ever known. She always taught me the value of hard work and working for what you want. She didn’t believe in handouts, and it showed me that whatever I wanted in life, I had to get it myself! Nothing is given to you, you go and take it. (more…)
“I love design, art and fashion, and this venture allows me to dabble in all three of my passions on a daily basis”
Name: Charlotte Warren
Cultural heritage: Barbadian/ American
Place of birth/Residence: Barbados
Current Residence: Barbados
Kiki: Tell me something memorable about your upbringing?
Charlotte: Looking back on my childhood what stands out as important to me is eating dinner together as a family every night. No matter what, my parents insisted we eat together and talk as a family. This taught me the importance of family. (more…)
“As an Architect, to be entrusted with a clients dream home, develop my built environment and create a comfortable, livable space is the most rewarding”
Name: Irina Kostka
Cultural heritage: German/Grenadian
Place of birth: Grenada
Current Residence: Grenada
Kiki: Tell me something memorable about your upbringing?
Irina: My entire upbringing growing up in Grenada was memorable. Back then our parents weren’t as worried about our safety, so we were allowed to explore independently from an early age. As a child, I roamed freely and it’s played a big role in defining who I am today.