“I love my hair because there’s nothing quite like it.”
“Hair love to me is loving your hair no matter what it looks like, what it feels like.”
Those are some messages in Hair Love, a video shot and released by the Black Chapter student group Centre Dufferin District High School in Shelburne, Ont.
The video covering self-love and identity was among the many initiatives by the group for Black Heritage Month.
Gabby Spencer, the group’s social media manager and who appears in the video, says she hopes the message will inspire others to embrace their natural hair and feel empowered.
“It’s important to teach Black kids, especially when they’re young that having different hair isn’t bad…. It’s strong, it’s beautiful and you should love it,” said Spencer.
“[The message is] to love your hair and to embrace it, to remember the history of your hair because there is a long, detailed history with Black hair.”
All hair is beautiful!! <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/Hairlove?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#Hairlove</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/BlackIsBeautiful?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#BlackIsBeautiful</a> <a href=”https://t.co/tY3ClTGR26″>pic.twitter.com/tY3ClTGR26</a>
Spencer said some members of the Black community, especially women and girls, have long felt discriminated against when it comes to their natural hair.
Group member Soha Soliman says it’s important to have empowering videos, such as Hair Love, by youth, for youth and the broader community.
“The key word here today is empowerment and it’s very important that we allow students in the community that are visible minorities and that are marginalized to love themselves and to be able to express their feelings and connect with their community,” said Soliman.
For more stories about the experiences of Black Canadians — from anti-Black racism to success stories within the Black community — check out Being Black in Canada, a CBC project Black Canadians can be proud of. You can read more stories here.