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Youth Feature – Jermaine Henry from Grassroots Youth Collaborative and Spoke N’ Heard

Jermaine Henry

Jermaine Henry

Jermaine Henry from Grassroots Youth Collaborative and Spoke N’ Heard

Video and Transcription by Fonna Seidu

An then he’s like “Yo man, honestly I love working with you, we are passionate about the same things. So why not join the team?” so that’s when I had the opportunity to be a part of the collective and part of a support network and it’s really just advanced me from then, so that’s how I got there. I just kinda – I showed, I proved myself. You know, I was doing the concert, we aligned, I proved and showed myself that I have a lot of dignity and integrity and I can get the job done and you know, that’s what I do.

My name is Jermaine Henry, I am the Director of Education at Spoke N’ Heard.

Q. Can you tell us more about Spoke N’ Heard?
So Spoke N’ Heard is a collective of artists, entrepreneurs, as well as youth workers who are just coming together for change and to expose mental health stigmatization as well as just being racilaized so we are just here to provide a safe space for them.

Q. What is your take on self care?
The funny thing about self-care is, I am really passionate about self-care. With Spoke-N-Heard, we went on a retreat about two months ago with The New Mentality and we started this whole trend #selfcare #selfcare. which really meant, when you’re in a workshop and things get really, kind of – you know, sometimes you’re just a little bored or sometimes you can’t handle you just need an emotional break hastag selfcare. So go take a walk, or go canoeing, or go write somepoetry, doodle, do whatever you need to do – breathe, meditate, and those are the kind of ways that I self care. Or just go with a friend and just chat, rant, you know what I mean? Just vent. sometimes you need to express those things and that’s why I love being an artist. Because part of what I do is express those raw emotions, whtever it is – just being free. So self care, take care of yourself first because to be honest, as youth workers as social workers we’re trying to help out people. You can’t help out anyone until you’ve helped out yourself first. You know? So be self-full in your self care.

Q. What are some local events that you love attending?
Ugh it’s so hard. I love so many especially with GYC, we have so many members like Manifesto. Their festival is amazing. It’s coming up, it’s awesome. Unity’s festival is really dope, I love performing at RISE and being part of that community atmosphere. I love our Spoke-N-Heard Liive thursdays what we do, so much fun. One event that I really love that not many people no of it is Abuse: Survival Stories, a recent event. That touches me every single time and I feel healed and I feel like I’m promoting peace and love and really just awakening hearts so it’s just an amazing experience. So those are just the ones on the top of my mind that I love.

Q. How do you learn best?
I love to learn in a lot of different ways. I would say my favourite is small groups, I really like 8-12 people, I really feel like if we’re facilitating a conversation on a topic and I’m able to speak about it, ask questions, as well as be able to tell stories with it that really resonates with me. I also really like reading books but also documentaries. i learn a lot from documentaries and then doing. I went to school and got my degree and whatnot but I consider my two first jobs as my placements because in actually doing the work I was able to learn so much more, so I really like doing hands on experiential learning.

Q. Is there anything else that you wish to share?
Well you definetly need to come out to Spoke-N-Heard Liive Thursdays at Vogue supper Club, we’re gonna have that November 27th and every last thursday of every month, so make sure you come out to that with Spoke-N-Heard. And really just follow us on twitter, ya know what I’m sayin? Spoke underscore N underscore Heard and then backslash, on facebook, backslash Spoke N Heard. Follow us, go to our website. um and anything that I would say last to all you people out there is be people and really just exist. Follow your heart. You know that small voice, follow that. So any time something’s feeling a little off just go towards that and I promise you it’s going to be towards health, wealth, love awareness, and anything that you need. So really, believe in yourself and in the oneness that we are all a part of. One Love.