Charitable Choices: Kandice Henry of Shining Lighte Youth Charity

In an insightful interview, Kandice Henry, the Founder and Executive Director of Shining Lighte Youth Charity (SLYC), provides a comprehensive overview of the organization’s impactful initiatives. Established in early 2023, SLYC stands as a beacon of hope for underprivileged youth, offering educational programs and opportunities aimed at breaking generational cycles of adversity.

Shining Lighte Youth Charity

Describe your charity/non-profit/volunteer work in a few sentences.

The Shining Lighte (Leaders in Generational Healing Through Empowerment and Education) Youth Charity (SLYC) is a charity that provides educational programs and initiatives to underprivileged youth to allow access to successful futures while changing generational cycles. We offer professional development, keynote or motivational speaking and programs. The Shining Lighte Youth Charity provides education with targeted strategic support that is transformative to the community and to the youth it serves. At SLYC, we believe that educated, employed, engaged and healed young people possess the power to solve the world’s toughest problems. We take pride in connecting young people with opportunities to transform their lives and are dedicated to helping them achieve their goals.

 What problem does it aim to solve?

The purpose of the charity is to empower and heal underprivileged youth to overcome racialized and impoverished situations through educational programs/initiatives, mentorship, and community engagement and interactions.

Objectives:

– To increase the success levels in underprivileged communities and bring resources within reach of those who have no or limited resources

– To seek and develop opportunities and routes for those in need throughout the GTA and surrounding areas

– To create and promote connections between Shining Lighte Youth Charity and the education system, justice system, social system and other youth empowerment groups

When did you start/join it?

Started in the beginning of 2023!

What made you want to get involved?

I have always been in the non-profit sector and a community advocate so I joined a non-profit about 10 years ago. My passion grew with each year as I saw how being even more hands-on in the community could make a difference. In 2020 I went to Tanzania and decided that long term I would like to initiate a global movement and opened my own charity to slowly implement that in years to come.

What was the situation like when you started?

It was brand new. We started from scratch and built everything from the ground up. We are still in the process of doing that and recognize It will be a lifelong process with all our goals.

How has it changed since?

We are still in the growth and structure process in the charity, trying to collect resources, funding and staff but in the little time we have been around we have been ensuring that our 3 main programs (Life Skill, Drop-In, ReGenerating Our Roots) run annually in addition to our main events (Youth Discussion Panel, Healing Humanity Festival – which is coming up July 20th in Durham, Read-A-Thon, and back to school drives, along with drives for the homeless)

We also were able to have a great first annual fundraiser which will happen every year and are looking to expand into different areas in the GTA soon. (We primarily serve Peel at the moment)

What more needs to be done?

Right now our main focus is to be sustainable. We need to be able to run consistently, be in more locations and help more communities and their youth ensuring that we have a source of income coming in in addition to sponsorship and donations so that we can continue to offer our programs for free in top priority. We also need to find more dedicated and passionate staff to help us grow.

Shining Lighte Youth Charity

How can our readers help?

Support through donations, sponsorships, volunteering and spreading the word so more youth can get access to the programs.

Do you have any events coming up?

Healing Humanity Festival in July and our annual Read-a-thon in the month of August

Where can we follow you?

Website | Instagram

PAY IT FORWARD: What is an awesome local charity that you love?

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About Emilea Semancik 105 Articles
Emilea Semancik was born in North Vancouver. Emilea has always always wanted to freelance her own pieces and currently writes for the Vancouver Guardian. She is also a recipe author working towards publishing her own series of recipe books. You can find her recipes on Instagram. @ancestral.foods