On 25-26 March, the Live Different Team came to Sandy Bay for 2 days of live performance to share tales of healing, love, and thriving in spite of trauma – and ultimately, growth. These they did with performance arts like rapping and music. The group consists of Dua Hamed (also the Team Leader), Jaylene Delorme, Christian Tagoona, Corbin Grieves, Sharissa Thomas & Brittany Gillespie.
Here are some pictures of their performances:
Hector Thiboutot Community School has taken the opportunity to catch up with them to share a few words. In this way, even more students can learn of their stories and be inspired to Live (Life) Different even if they weren’t able to attend the performances.
HTCS: First of all, can you tell us what is Live Different about?
Dua: Live different is an attitude towards all that life has to offer. We opt to see life from a lens of positivity, determination & compassion. We strive to do and be better. The second part to all of this is the willingness to be of service in spreading this message to anyone that crosses your path. Like Ghandi said “my life is my message.”
Christian: Live Different means opening the door to positive change because in order to change your life for the better.. You need to live different. In terms of kindness I want to share how giving a small act of kindness can change somebodies whole day so if somebody shared an act of kindness every day that opens the door to life changing for the better.
HTCS: How do you feel about performing here in Sandy Bay?
Dua: We got to know of Sandy Bay through Live Different and [performing here] was so so so special! The youth were happy to have us, they loved the messages we were sharing and made sure we heard it directly from them.
Corbin: I felt great [performing in Sandy Bay]. The crowds here have always been hype and almost everyone came out to our concert!
HTCS: Some of your messages were about ‘Kindness’ and ‘Healing’. Can you share with us a bit more about what ‘kindness’ and ‘healing’ means to you?
Brittany: No matter what your going through always remember to be kind. You never know how a small act of kindness can change someone’s day even your own
Sharissa: Kindness… Oh how it’s changed so much things for me, and as well as it could for you! You see, when you’re able to do something kind for someone it changes their day, who even knows maybe even their own life! So whenever you get the chance to be kind to someone do it. Always be kind!
Dua: Choose to walk the path of continual healing for yourself first. It always starts with yourself. Begin to create a toolkit of what works to bring you peace. Is it nature, a bubble bath, talking to a friend, singing, dancing or journaling? You have access to your toolkit whenever you desire. Remember to be gentle with yourself, have patience & humble yourself to ask for help.
Christian: We need to open the doors to healing through opening up, finding something that you can relate to to realize that you can overcome whatever you face.
HTCS: Thank you. We understand that everyone in your team has a compelling story. Can we can get a brief account of some of yours to share with everyone – especially those who unfortunately weren’t able to come for the performance?
Christian: I don’t have a story for any student in particular but if I can share one thing it would be that some times we get so caught up in where we are that we begin to forget where we’re going and forget our purpose. You weren’t born accidentally, there is a place for everybody in this world and growing up, finding something we’re passionate about is you finding your place so I encourage you to keep pushing for it because not only will it change your life but it will change the lives of many others that you meet in your life.
Jaylene: I had always felt [in the past] like my history, my addiction and abuse defined me, and that my future wasn’t going to go anywhere.
When I stopped believing that lie, not only was I able to stay off my addictions, but I was able to start taking small steps in a positive direction. I started off by applying for a different conferences and events for good causes. I remember getting my acceptance letter for my first conference with an initiative called “Daughters of the Vote”, and when I showed up, I was blown away that these people, who knew my history, would give me a chance.
Their kindness inspired me to do more…If you feel hopeless or stuck, I want you to know that there is purpose in your story, and that you don’t have to be anybody to be somebody.
HTCS: Thank you. We all know that growing up can be a painful experience. Do you have any words to share as well as any words of encouragement for any of our students reading this?
Sharissa: [Growing up] is a lot of work! I’m only 18 and I’m still working on it, myself. It’s being your own hype man that will help you honestly. Being able to tell yourself ‘you can do it! It’ll be worth it in the end!’ Things like that always help on the daily basis. The things in life that aren’t going well for you, will change. It may not be visible now but just wait and see!
Love yourself and always be thankful for each day and don’t take it for granted! Always work hard, because it truly does pay off in the end! I almost didn’t graduate due to the things I was into, but one day I just decided that I wanted to get my diploma, I wanted to be able to walk across the stage and be proud of myself because I did it! And so can you, don’t give up!
Dua: These are the most important times of your life! Your attitude during difficult times determine where you’ll go next. Cry, scream, laugh so loud others think you’re insane. These times are nurturing your ability to be resilient, brave and vulnerability. I believe in you! You can overcome anything you set your mind to.
The purpose you came onto this earth can only be fulfilled by you! How special is that?! Keep asking yourself what your purpose is, keep growing, free yourself to be yourself- I believe in you and I love you wholeheartedly.
Christian: I want to share that its all a part of life. Learning in school isn’t easy but its worth it. Take that same principle and double its worth when it comes to learning from the struggles in life.
Also in terms of encouragement, it can go a long way. Encouragement can do wonders when it happens. I know for myself I wouldn’t be where I am today if I didnt have a random stranger tell me that he believes in me so I strongly believe it can happen for any body else.
HTCS: And to end off, here are some last words from our school principal and a short video of the performance.
Mr Randy Mallory: The messages are so relevant and the team really struck a cord with our students. Their zest for life was truly infectious and many students both enjoyed, and are ‘educated’, by their performances. We’d like to give our thanks to the Live Different Team and also give our thanks to the agencies that brought them over to our school. We look forward to seeing them soon.