Second Story celebrates Persons Day every year by giving the Howler Award to a woman, girl or gender-oppressed person who is an exemplary, fearless community leader; an inspiring and hopeful champion who has found their voice and used it to mobilize others to effect change on issues of concern to women.
We are pleased to present the 2021 Howler Award to Jessika Hepburn, for her work as a community-minded entrepreneur, activist and organizer!
Jessika is a local business owner of Black and Jewish descent, and a longtime activist and organizer. Jessika runs her Cafe and book shop, The Biscuit Eater in Mahone Bay, with a community mandate. It is explicitly a safe space for LGBTQIA+ and BIPOC folks and is used to host meetings and hang outs for marginalized groups. Jessika has implemented a Community Care program, where anyone who is in need of food (or books!) is able to come to the biscuit eater and receive what they need, free of charge. Jessika is also one of the driving forces behind the BIPOC South Shore group, which has been speaking truth to power and doing important and much needed work in our community. We are so pleased to present this year's Howler Award to Jessika, who is building community over cups of tea and fighting oppression and racism, right here in our neighbourhood. Congratulations, Jessika!
During the Howler Award presentation, Jessika urged everyone to read Audre Lord's speech, 'THE USES OF ANGER: WOMEN RESPONDING TO RACISM,' from her keynote presentation at the 1981 National Women's Studies Association Conference, which we really appreciated and wanted to make more widely available here. Thank you, Jessika! Read Audre Lorde's speech HERE.
Never explain, never retract, never apologize. Just get the thing done and let them howl.- Nellie McClung
I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own. And I am not free as long as one person of Color remains chained. Nor is anyone of you. - Audre Lorde