Stella Damasus Interview Simone Myrie
MEET SIMONE MYRIE (AUTHOR OF LIFE OF AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT)
Stella Damasus : Simone (my Jamaican sister) as I like to call her, is a good friend and a woman I respect and hold in very high regard, not just because of her accomplishments but also because of all the humanitarian work she is doing.
She is the first BLACK IMMIGRANT to grace the cover of THE INDIE ARTISTS Magazine and is also about to receive a ton of awards in NEW YORK for all the amazing work that she does.
It is an honor for me to introduce her to the world because I believe that her story and experiences can inspire WOMEN all over the world to live their dreams and be who they want to be:
1) Who is the WOMAN KNOWN AS SIMONE MYRIE
Simone is an adventurer, born to “break ceilings”, debunk and prove societies negative “shackles” as figments of our own imagination.
I was born in the parish of Westmoreland as a twin with four other siblings. Simone is a citizen of JAMAICA with a passion to seeing a rebirth of that nation. She completed aspects of her education and gained work experience there before living in London, England, migrating to Canada and then onto the United States of America where she now resides as a citizen of that country.
In pursuit of her educational journey Simone studied Finance and Economics before Migrating to London England to continue studies in the field, then returning to take up a post with the Government of Jamaica in the Revenue department. After about seven years she left for Canada and worked with Scotia Bank for two years and then over to USA to further studies and on to working with an immigration law firm there.
2) Why did you choose to come to America?
Coming to America for me was another stop in the journey of the discovery of life, with another “glass ceiling to break”.
3) How were you treated in America based on your accent and status?
Having conditioned my mind to do whatever is needed to succeed, the rest came as natural challenges to be conquered.
There were and still are several issues but the approach to them all resonate around knowing that failure or crying about the problem is not a part of the solution. To the people who don’t like the accent, tough for them.
My attitude is simply to push on, paying as little attention to “their” problem as I can. We have had the good fortune of having most people like what they hear. I guess it’s because I keep within the “zone” that can somewhat relate to my culture, respect for others and the positive “vibe” I try to portray.
4)Did you ever think you would be this successful?
A Unite Jamaica Peoples' intervention in Education.
Renovation of Hatfield Basic School in Westmoreland Jamaica to facilitate 150 students
Again, for me success is a journey with a destination.Yes I give thanks for a few accomplishments to date, but the real success has not really been achieved as yet.."aluta continua".
The real ambition for me lies in realizing my true goal of being a driving force in the empowerment of a people. With the greater focus at this time being, what I can do to stimulate a unity of a mass and create bonds of cooperation to assist in Uniting Jamaica People to greater economic and social independence.
I will consider myself successful when this ideal is accomplished.
5)What was the inspiration behind your book LIFE OF AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT
The American dream, the myths and struggles associated with “rags to riches’ have captured the minds and imagination of countless people from the World over.
For some the realities have not been as pleasant as for others. The journey and “gamble” for many is simply worth the “risk” of seeking the “dream” any way possible.The pathway for ceasing opportunities are many , varied and mostly loaded with obstacles to overcome.
You may have heard the term "illegal immigrants" in the news or mentioned by adults. What does that mean, exactly? How can a person be illegal?.....It's kind of a weird thing to call someone, so i choose to use the term "undocumented immigrants," meaning they don't have the official paperwork that allows them to live in a new country. When immigration through legal channels is too expensive, complicated, or slow, or when the situation is too desperate, people are often left with this option. This book includes their experiences the struggles of finding employment, the frustration in a strange new world. This is the
LIFE OF AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT
6)What advice do you have for people who want to relocate to America?
DON’T BE NAIVE…IT IS NO BED OF ROSES.
The mission is so much easier for those who can go the straight and legal way, especially for those with an already established “genuine” support system in place. To land in America on mere “promises” from a “friend” who is not committed to your cause can quickly turn a dream to a nightmare. Abuse and disrespect comes very quickly to illegal immigrants who become a “burden” to the uncommitted. The advice would be try to enter America legally and try to understand the system as quickly as possible.
7)What is UNITE JAMAICA PEOPLE really about?
Unite Jamaica People, seeks to be an umbrella organization that advocates for and brings real solutions to the masses of our people as we seek to transform Jamaica and the negative images.
UJP is sensitively aware of the day to day issues which have been causing and creating untold hardship for our people. We are engulfed with social and economic issues which have manifested themselves in untenable Crime and violence, domestic violence, children’s issues, homelessness, unemployment and other burning issues.
We intend to build bonds of partnerships to intervene in as wide a cross section of the National issues as possible and advocate solutions while implementing practical on the ground solutions to impact real change.
We intend to introduce a Re-socialization program to impact morals values and good attitudes, a National Empowerment Shelter Transformation Program (NEST) to assist in removing our homeless from the streets and into a self supporting community, RAIL Tourism program for ethnic/cultural community development and several intervention programs to impact family life, unemployment, agriculture, education and matters of environmental degradation among other interventions.
For our interventions we welcome Unity partners and other investors to support our programs and projects.
8)I just found out about oracle daily forum and your new radio show. Tell us more about them
In all that we do communication is key to getting information circulated, to educate and empower a wide cross section of the target audience.
ORACLE DAILY FORUM, the new radio program, Newsletter, social media pages and links are simply vehicles to connect with our members, friends, well wishers and the curious who would love to assist in the bridge building process to ensure that the bonding and Unity that we desire within the diaspora and the connections to the African continent can be solidified for the empowerment process of all our people.
9)How are you able to do all this and still be a great mum?
The great part of my work is the motivation from a supportive family, especially my daughter “Drupassion” who is sometimes more involved than I am.
She is the constant voice that reminds me of the struggles of our people. She is the researcher of the News and contributor to the discussions.
So my work is made easy because of the bond and partnership in my home. We decide our agenda and we basically do everything as a team. I really do not believe that I could have maintained the focus without the love and support from home.
10)What is your reaction to statements like "as a woman you cannot be very successful with work and family at the same time, one must suffer for the other"
“Different strokes for different folks”.
The same statement could be addressed to man who is not grounded in his commitment to what he considers important. Everything in life worthy of achieving comes with sacrifices.The journey is made easier by having a genuine and strong support system who is vested in the vision and willing to join the mission.