Jamaican Queen of Dancehall, Grace Latoya Hamilton who goes by stage name, “Spice” & the Source, kicked off the holidays on Nov. 19, by collaborating with Dr. Meda Leacock, founder of IAmWondaWoman Foundation, to hand out turkeys at the organization’s 12th Annual Turkey Giveaway.
Residents in need, joined a long line outside Crispus Attucks Public School 21, in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, from 6 pm, and were greeted by the world-renowned artist who stood at the top of the line in the school’s gymnasium to put turkeys in shopping carts, and pose for pictures during the event, that the office of Assemblywoman Latrice Walker of the 56th District, and many others facilitated.
Spice, wearing her signature “blue wig” told Caribbean Life, she has been supporting her close friend and business partner, Dr. Leacock, and her foundation for the past 12 years, and thought it would be fitting to give back to her many fans in Bedford-Stuyvesant, who have been supporting her for the past 20 years.
The hitmaker, and “Love and Hip-hop Atlanta” alum, who recently debut “10” her first album, was excited to be in the community, after jetting from her home in Georgia.
She shared, that she hadn’t a good night’s sleep in two days but was happy to be at the charitable event, anyway.
“I was in town, and I was excited to come out and say thanks to my fans and wish them a happy holiday and give out turkeys. It is great to see them and their families, she said, and quipped, “children are here” when asked, if she would perform her provocative chart topping single, “Go Down Deh.”
Owner of brand label, Spice Official Entertainment, Graci Noir, a clothing brand, and Faces & Laces, a business that provides lace wigs, beauty and skincare products, “Spice” who likes all things nice, was recently featured in this publication.
She thanked Caribbean Life, in her Jamaican twang – saying, “big-up yuhself you are always representing,” as she commended Caribbean Life, and this reporter for the feature article which she appreciates.
Ranked on Billboard magazine’s influential lists, Spice, who was decked out in a Tee, emblazed with IAmWondaWoman Foundation, paired with black attire, and who lives by two things, prayer and hard work, lauded the efforts of the organization and partners and thanked volunteers, who helped to serve residents just in time for Thanksgiving dinner.
The busy artist spent the duration of the event meeting and greeting fans, and chatting with media outlets.
Noting that she was excited about the programs the school is promoting, and the partnership with Spice, Stephanie L. Zinerman, member of Assembly 56th District, was pleased with the giveback.
“This is a collaboration with Latrice Walker, and the turkey giveaway was befitting the way Thanksgiving should be celebrated,” said the politician, and shared that Bedstuy and Crown Heights residents never stayed inside during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We were always outdoors helping families, making sure they had the services they needed. We stayed connected with them during those dark days via zoom, so they got the information they need. The kids were engaged with schoolwork, and in the park, where they enjoyed sporting activities, and arts and craft during the summer.
Programs were provided for the seniors, so they didn’t feel isolate, were all part of outreaches, that Zinerman said helped to keep the community connected.
Plans are afoot for 2022, that would allow the community to control its own food chain. “During the pandemic we had to depend on food coming from other countries. We have been trying to grow our own food,” she said adding that the community already has 25 garden farms.
“This school has its own hydroponic labs, and three more are in the district in high and junior high schools.”
“We are going to have our own chapter for future farms of America, and not only will they be growing food, but there will also be future biologist figuring out, how to make our food system safe going into the future.
“I am excited about this work, and excited about the partnership with our schools, and the program Spice is a part of,” she said.
Angel Brown, president of The Fabulous Ge’Ma Club said it’s a great feeling when you do a lot for the community, and Spice being a part of the giveback helps.
Brown, who led a group of volunteers, said as young grandmothers, they are very much involved in engaging the community, by feeding the homeless. The organization host year-round programs such as a clothing drive and serve Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.
The 500 turkeys handed out during the evening helped to feed many in the community, and she looks forward to supporting the collaborative next year. “Doing our part is important to everyone,” said Brown.
The success of the evening’s event was due to others including Community Leader Khari Edwards, artists Lil Cease, Bang, Klept of IAmWondaWoman Foundation, The Grant Foundation, Domencio Montana Foundation, Brooklyn Chop House, Deon Grant of the Grant Foundation, and Domencio Dingle of Domencio and Montana Foundation.
Entrepreneurs Charlene Thomas, Eve Smith, Greg Parker, Davina Perez, Danielle Beckom, Latoya King, Buck LLC, Terrence Harding Advisory Group, joined by Artist Lil Cease and Junior Mafia, Artist Tek of Smif-n-Wessun, Londell McMillan & The Source Magazine, and Don Pooh Cummins & Brooklyn Chop House, also contributed.