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Hodan’s Spirit Lives On’: Legacy Day celebrates Somali-Canadian journalist in Toronto

Arbaco 12 June 2024 {HMC}  The vibrant spirit of the late Somali-Canadian journalist Hodan Nalayeh was celebrated with zeal on May 29 during the third annual Legacy Day at Hodan Nalayeh Secondary School. What began as a modest gathering has evolved into a significant community celebration, drawing students, families, educators, and local leaders to honour Nalayeh’s enduring impact.

A Growing Tradition

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Barwaaqo Nalayeh, Hodan’s sister, reflected on the event’s growth. “Over the past three years, Legacy Day has grown tremendously in both scope and impact,” she shared in an exclusive interview with Hiiraanweyn. “Initially, it was a smaller, more intimate event for staff and students to get to know Hodan Nalayeh, the school’s namesake. But it has become a powerful annual gathering that brings together students, families, educators, community leaders, and media.”
The expansion is a testament to the increasing recognition of Hodan’s legacy and the profound impact of her work. For the Nalayeh family, it signifies the continuation of Hodan’s mission to empower youth and uplift the Somali community.

Barwaaqo recounted a touching memory that encapsulates Hodan’s passion for youth empowerment. “One of my fondest memories of Hodan is from a visit we made to a local school in Somalia. Hodan had arranged for new books and supplies to be delivered, and she spent the day interacting with the students, listening to their dreams and aspirations. I remember her telling a young girl she could be anything she wanted to become, encouraging her to dream big and work hard. Hodan’s genuine belief in the potential of every young person she met was truly inspiring. She had an incredible ability to make everyone feel valued and capable, a testament to her passion for empowerment.”

Honouring Changemakers

The Legacy Day event also featured the Hodan Nalayeh Change Maker Awards, recognizing students who embody the values Hodan championed. Barwaaqo described the emotional impact of these awards: “Watching the students receive the Hodan Nalayeh Change Maker Awards fills me with immense pride and joy. It’s a bittersweet moment because while we miss Hodan deeply, we know that her spirit lives on through these young changemakers. I feel a deep sense of hope and optimism for the future as I see the students’ excitement and determination to make a difference in their school and community.”

She continued, “I believe Hodan would be incredibly proud and humbled by these recognitions. She always championed the idea that one person can make a significant impact, and these awards celebrate that ethos by acknowledging the positive contributions of these remarkable students. Last year, our mom attended the awards and was amazed at how many applicants applied this year, seeing the number of award winners triple from three to twelve. Hodan’s 12-year-old son spoke and thanked everyone, which always makes us proud to see her children watching their mother’s legacy continue.”

The Nalayeh family’s involvement in Legacy Day has deepened over the years, with increased efforts in organizing the event and securing resources to ensure its continued growth.

{DHAGEYSO} Warka Habeenimo ee Warbaahinta Hiiraanweyn {18.07.2024}

Khamiis 18 July 2024 {HMC} Dhageystayaal halkan waxa aan idiin kugu soo gudbi neynaa Warka habeenimo ee Warbaahinta  Hiiraanweyn Warka waxaa soo jeedinayo ::Dhaqane Khaliif Abdi Farsamadii ::Abdirahman...

{DAAWO MUUQAALKA} Wararkii Ugu Danbeeyay Soomaaliya iyo Caalamka

Khamiis 18 July 2024 {HMC}  Wararkii Ugu Danbeeyay Soomaaliya iyo Caalamka HOOS KA DAAWO WARBIXINTA MUQAALKA.

WARARKA