WYL: Tell us a bit about yourself!
AP: My name is Aaliyah, I was born and raised in Halifax Nova Scotia. I'm currently a junior at Citadel High School, once I graduate next year I would like to do a lot of things. Attending University of Kings College is currently at the top of my list. I enjoy instagramming, watching makeup/ natural hair tutorials on the internet, and spending time with people I care about.
AP: Ending the stigma surrounding mental illness is important to me because within the African Canadian community, the struggle with mental health is often a silent one. With misunderstandings within the community around what mental illness means and barriers that prevent individuals from accessing help or safe spaces, dealing with depression, anxiety and other disorders becomes challenging and complicated. It seems as though either you are perfectly ‘normal’, or you are at the opposite end of the spectrum, which means you are suffering from psychotic symptoms or you’re ‘crazy,’ and as a result, you are ostracized. A black man or woman experiencing a mental health challenge is more likely to hide it or delay seeking help over the fear of being shunned or labelled by the people around them. Certain barriers like these can prevent us from seeking help. More mental health awareness within all communities can break down these barriers.
It's so hard to choose between cats and dogs because they're all so cute, but I think I'll go with dogs! :)
My favourite food is probably won ton soup.
I still find them highly interesting. I just think maybe, I'm needed elsewhere.