by Lindsay Tarquinio
Last night, Lupita Nyong’o won the Oscar for best supporting actress. Admittedly, I watch the Oscars mainly to ooo and ahh over the dresses. Normally, I make it about 1/3 into the show and then turn it off because honestly, I really don’t care who wins.
This year, Ellen kept me entertained enough to keep watching and about an hour in, Lupita’s name was called for a win. You can’t help but fall in love with her. Her excitement, her sincerity, her absolutely overwhelming joy. As I listened, tears started streaming down my face. By her last sentence, I was full on crying.
She said, “When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where you’re from, your dreams are valid.”
I couldn’t help but picture all of the faces of the little girls at Ithemba, standing on that stage in a gorgeous Cinderella gown, watching all of their wildest dreams come true.
Lupita was born Kenyan, from the Luo tribe. Her mother gave birth in Mexico but in the first year of her life, her family moved back to Kenya. Her story is different from our children. She was born into a political family. She had access to quality education and a family unit to encourage her dreams, but her words absolutely ring true. NO MATTER WHERE YOU ARE FROM, YOUR DREAMS ARE VALID.
We need to fight for our children at Ithemba School to know that they can dream, and that their dreams matter. You don’t have to be born into a wealthy political family. You don’t have to go to the best private school in New York City. You, as you are, a child from Jeffreys Bay, South Africa MATTER and if your dream is to take home a little gold statue from the Oscar stage- it IS possible.
Thank you for helping us invest in dreams.