This weekend will bring a perfect way to hide from the snow and wind while also supporting a great cause and watching some amazing performers. The African Grassroots Telethon will not only be a fantastic way to spend your Sunday afternoon, it has some serious connections to Nova Scotia; without St. Francis Xavier University’s Coady International Institute, none of this would have been possible.
Telethon host and co-producer, Jenn Hayward, met Bernadette Muyomi from Kenya and Sister Rosalia Sakayombo from Zambia while in Nova Scotia. All three women attended a conference for women leaders in change hosted by the Coady International Institute in Antigonish, Nova Scotia in 2017.
“It was life changing,” says Haward of her experience in Nova Scotia. “This was an amazing opportunity for twenty women from all over the world to come together for seven weeks to talk, train, and find ways to collaborate to make the world a better place. At the time, we laughed about a stand-up comedian and a Catholic nun being paired up as roommates, but we became great friends and our telethon this weekend is just one of the amazing things that has come out of our time in Nova Scotia with the Coady International Institute.”
The Telethon is produced by The Jenn Hayward Show and Nova Scotia native, Sarah Stewart (@adventureseekersarah). The show will be broadcast on eight different groups and shared widely on Facebook and YouTube on Sunday, January 16, 2022, from 1 pm until 6 pm (AST).
Fred Penner, Bif Naked, Crystal Shawanda, and many others have signed up to raise money for the African Grassroots Telethon in collaboration with the HERA Mission. The funds will be used for grassroots sustainable youth and entrepreneur funding in Busia and Asembo Bay, Kenya, and to build a children’s hall in Mazabuka, Zambia.
The project has also teamed up with the Ultimate Online Nova Scotia Kitchen Party, who will close out the show directly following Fred Penner with the “East Coast Hour”, a musical performance from all East Coast musicians. “There’s so much talent in Nova Scotia that I knew we had to have performers from Ultimate Online Nova Scotia Kitchen Party close out the show,” says co-producer Sarah Stewart. “They’ve done so much for organizations like Feed Nova Scotia in the past and it’s an honour to have them onboard.”
The East Coast segment will kick off with singer/songwriter and autism advocate, Sarah H. Sarah describes her style as “heartbreak love songs.” “It’s like Taylor Swift wrote them, but Greenday is performing,” Sarah says of her signature style. Sarah’s story of how she came to music is an inspiring tale of a street kid who refused to give up on her musical dream, panhandling for a guitar and basic lessons and teaching herself the rest.
Since the conference with the Coady International Institute in 2017, Hayward, Muyomi, and Sakayombo have been collaborating with communities in Africa to find the best ways to bring about sustainable and meaningful changes. They hope to make a huge positive impact in the lives of many children in Zambia as the telethon raises funds for a much needed school hall in Mazabuka, as well as other initiatives.
“This is not just about giving money,” Hayward told Nova Scotia Buzz, “Really, it’s about sustainable giving. We’re making sure that the projects we’re a part of continue to give back to the community long after completion.”
Tune in live and watch the entire show free of charge at The Jenn Hayward Show on Facebook here: https://fb.me/e/1eSPVuk6t