noun ac·tion·ist \ˈak-sh(ə-)nist\
an advocate of direct action
Seeing the dynamic Vicky Jeudy for the first time, you are encapsulated in her warmth, genuine good-heartedness, and fun spirit. But don’t be fooled, behind those gorgeous twinkling brown eyes you’ll catch a glimpse of steel. Who would have thought that a Haitian-American girl born and raised in Queens, New York would one day become one of the stars of Netflix’s award-winning comedy-drama Orange Is The New Black? Vicky did and she has since placed all bets on herself.
Having caught the acting bug at school, she decided to pursue it. “One year, after I was laid off from my corporate job I decided to take a year off and pursue the industry full time. It was a year of hardship, focus and God’s grace. At the end of the year I booked Orange is the New Black.” As much as it was truly a blessing to book the job, Vicky was also blessed with fantastic coworkers. “It’s great working on the show. We are a close family and have a deep level of respect for the things that we do. Usually in between takes we are singing, playing around and just having fun. The whole cast and crew are great.”
Having established herself in one of the toughest industries, Vicky has a new drive and focus; encouraging Haitians. “My dream for Haiti is to create jobs. I’m open to working with people who have a true passion with Haiti. I recently started an Instagram page called #EncourageHaiti and am working on a new social media project called ‘Encourage Haiti.’”
“I believe the words we choose to speak are vital and can build up or destroy a community.”
Over the past Christmas season, Jeudy has been partnering with Haiti Global Village, an exciting new cooperative of Haitians in the diaspora and friends of Haiti, working collaboratively to find sustainable solutions for Haiti’s future has led to Vicky to her own call to arms. The purpose of the project is for “people from ALL parts of the world (young & old) to speak words of life and encouragement to the people of Haiti,” by recording short, personal videos of encouragement and support. With her steely will and the goodness in her heart, Vicky is hoping her IG page can create a space where the community of Haiti can come hear words of love and positivity. Success for Vicky didn’t happen overnight, it was a product of her grit, hard work, and her grace to not only succeed, but to also pay it forward to a country and people who shaped the person she is today. While most architects create communities with construction materials, Vicky is hoping words instead of brick and mortar will create a stronger community. “I believe the words we choose to speak are vital and can build up or destroy a community.” Here’s hoping this actionist will inspire people to speak words of love and hope to build up the spirits of the Haitian people!
Let’s find out what’s on actress and humanitarian Vicky Jeudy’s mind with Woy Words!
- My nickname is: Kiki, only my family calls me that.
- The first thing I do when I wake up is: Breathe & Journal & Pray.
- Things that I do not like to do: I hate burpees.
- In 3 words my mom or family member would describe me as: persistence, strong willed, and loving.
- My superpower is: I wish I could memorize a book by looking at the cover.
- I can’t live without: My eyebrow pencil from Anastasia.
- A project or accomplishment that I consider to be the most significant in my career is: Orange is the New Black.
- A time when I almost gave up, how did I feel about that, and what I did instead of giving up is: I almost gave up in pursuing this industry. I decided to take a year off when I was unemployed to break into the entertainment industry. During that year things were hard and I remember calling my cousin who wouldn’t allow me to make any excuses. She said in her thick NY accent “Don’t tell me what you can’t do. Tell me what you can do”.
- On a weirdness scale of 1 to 10, I am: a 5.
- Everything tastes better with: Hot sauce-Haitian hot sauce is even better.
- If I only had $10.00 I would: Either buy my dad lunch or give it to my little cousin.
- In the event of a zombie apocalypse, I would: die! I hate zombies and horror films.
- My favorite quote is by: my friend who is 88 years old. She says to always work very hard. She worked two full time jobs for 25 years.
If you would like to help Vicky #EncourageHaiti please include your first name and media tag, and a description of yourself in 3 words along with a 15-60 second long video to the Encourage Haiti instagram page or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You may choose to speak English or your native language.
Photo Credit: Vicky Jeudy