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Quentrel Provo nominated for Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 award

Quentrel Provo at the 2020 Courage to Give Back Awards in Halifax, N.S.
Quentrel Provo at the 2020 Courage to Give Back Awards in Halifax, N.S. Alexander Quon/Global News

Halifax anti-violence advocate Quentrel Provo announced last week that he has been nominated for Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 Award for 2020.

Provo said on his Twitter page that the nomination was an “unexpected blessing.”

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“Twenty-twenty has been so crazy with everything going on, so this is something good,” he told Global News.

Provo is the founder of Stop the Violence, Spread the Love, an initiative that advocates for peace, ending gun violence and improving the lives of Black youth in Halifax.

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The movement started eight years ago following the death of Provo’s cousin Kaylin Diggs.

Last year, 33-year-old Provo was recognized by the United Nations on the global list of the Most Influential People of African Descent (MIPAD) Under 40.

Provo has also received a Senate of Canada 150 Medal, was chosen to meet Barack Obama during his 2019 visit to Halifax, and won the Indomitable Spirit Award at Nova Scotia’s Courage to Give Back 2020 Awards.

“It’s been crazy the last year and a half or so,” he says.

Read more: ‘It’s amazing’ — Halifax’s ‘Stop the Violence’ founder nominated for prestigious award

But Provo says impacting lives is still his greatest accomplishment.

“It’s good to be recognized for the work that I’m doing, but I always tell people what motivates me and continues to inspire me is hearing from people that I’ve impacted … in a positive way,” Provo says.

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He says his family is his biggest supporter.

“I never take full credit for awards… It’s our award,” Provo says.

Provo says many of his planned speaking events have been moved to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic, but he is still finding ways to stay engaged.

Stop the Violence day founder issues new challenge for 2020
Stop the Violence day founder issues new challenge for 2020

He says he has been attending Black Lives Matter rallies, but most of his regular engagement with the community has moved to online formats like Zoom calls.

Provo says it’s a “new way of doing it, but it’s still getting the message out there… spreading the message that we can all do our part.”

According to the Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 Award foundation, the selection meeting has been rescheduled due to COVID-19. It says the advisory board will meet in September to select this year’s honourees, to be announced by the end of that month.

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