COVID CAN’T WIN!
A part of
Motivating Minds, Inspiring Nations and Building Global Bridges!
By Patrick Donovan – Author/Screenwriter
US Navy Disabled Veteran – 1980 – 1991
Seattle, WA (The Hollywood Times) 06/10/2020
“TheWay2Inspire.org is an incredible global organization founded by humanitarian, Felicia Henderson. She’s found a way to unite peoples, help local communities and build global bridges in ways that only she can. Listen and read my interview with Felicia and you too, will be, inspired!”
– Patrick Donovan
True Help & Empowerment for Women & Aspiring Youth Foundation USA
Mrs. Felicia S. Henderson is an African American humanitarian. Having studied a double major in Allied Health and Business from the prestigious University of Illinois at Chicago, she has three (3) decades of corporate experience from different organizations in the United States and Nigeria such as Ameritech (formerly Illinois Bell) a Telecom company in Illinois, the prestigious Chicago Tribune- one of the foremost newspapers in the USA and the esteemed Hartford Insurance Company to name a few.
After living over 12 years in Africa, she decided it was time to return to her roots. Thus, returning to the United States with her family and currently resides in Texas where she acts as the Managing Director of AE Consults, Kesma J International Resources Limited, Visionary Incubator and Founder and International Director of The Way Foundation and its multiple arms located in various countries. Felicia wears many hats and remains a woman off abundant talent and countless possibilities. Having long since carved out her niche as the “International Business Woman”, “Humanitarian”, “Actress”, “Model”, “Motivational Speaker”, “Instigator Of Change” and “Visionary” she proudly states “ I’m a jack of many trades and master of everything I do!”. Aside standing as a UPF Ambassador of Peace and Global Goodwill Ambassador, she is an Executive member of the Nigerian Belize Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture and also sits as Chairman of Media /Publicity and Business Development Committees, as well as an active member of several national, international and multilateral boards, associations and organizations.
A firm believer in the ideology that ‘we all are ordinary people, just waiting to do extraordinary things”, Amb. Henderson is passionate about motivating, inspiring people and challenging people to make the right choices in life and has been internationally recognized for doing just that. Having received many local & international awards and honors inclusive of being recognized as 1 of 100 Globally Influential Women in London she continues to try and set the bar higher in the sixth (6th) sector.
She is ever ready to support lend a hand to start up with that special spark in an effort to give other budding Not for profits something to emulate and aspire to with her simplistic, fiery and contagious “do as I do, not as I say attitude”. With her “can do” unique approach/perspective of looking at every event from the “outside in” she has successfully incepted numerous innovations in the education, health, socio economic spheres with no sign of slowing down as she continues to roll out international collaborations in various areas to ensure that the lives of the Global Populaces are impacted positively while ensuring that her trademark phrase “Win, Win, Wins” are consistently created for sustainable growth and development and the benefit of Global communities as a whole. This feisty mother of five (5) is disciplined, firmly planted in her beliefs while holding steadfast to her values and committed to fulfilling her vision of nurturing downtrodden souls, motivating the discouraged, and empowering the weak, lost and forgotten.
“GOD has given each of us A PEARL… SOME of us MORE THAN ONE! If we refuse to IDENTIFY and JOIN our GIFT our PEARL with others AS ORDAINED, we and it will ever remain JUST A PEARL and NEVER become the PRICELESS GIFT and EVER SO BEAUTIFUL STRAND OF PEARLS that GOD intended IT and US to be…. TOGETHER!”
With its unique “can do” approach & perspective of looking at every event from the “outside in” The Way Foundation USA has successfully incepted numerous innovations in the leadership, education, health, socio-economic and community development spheres with no sign of slowing down as it continues to roll out international collaborations in various areas to ensure that the lives of the Global Populaces are impacted positively while ensuring that its trademark phrase “Win, Win, Wins” are consistently created for sustainable growth and development and the benefit of Global communities as a whole. Remaining firmly planted while holding steadfast to its values and committed to fulfilling its vision of nurturing downtrodden souls, motivating the discouraged, and empowering the weak, lost and forgotten.
Join us in Touching the Life of Someone in Need Today!
Click to hear the full interview. The full transcript is below.
Patrick Donovan: Welcome Felicia to the Hollywood times, how are you doing today and how have you been with the COVID lockdown and how’s your family?
Felicia Henderson: Well, Patrick, everything’s been great over here in Houston. I have to say that I really empathize with everything that’s going on in the world right now.
It’s really a tough time that we are facing, most, especially because outside of the emotional turmoil, that have its own indices we’ve got this huge problem that we’re dealing with globally. COVID and so, I mean, it’s a lot, I can imagine for some people to, to have to deal with. but on our side is, thankfully pretty calm and pretty steady and consistent where I am here so I’m grateful for that. My family’s doing really well, as I hope is yours.
Patrick Donovan: They are. Thank you very much for asking. Talk to me about your early beginnings, where you’re from, what got you interested in activism?
Felicia Henderson: You know, the tell you the truth. I can’t ever. recall not being into what you would call activism. I come from a family that’s Southern and, we basically, I guess you you’ve, everyone’s always heard of the Southern Hospitality type of thing. And so it’s always been a sense where, we’ve always given back. We’ve always been a part of community. My family is from Mississippi, so, I could say probably all of my life I’ve been, a humanitarian, so to speak because community has always been a big part, of my life growing up as a child. So, I can’t point out any particular time. because even as a youngster, I was taught not to hold on to things, not to put value in things, but instead to put value in people.
So my mother was that neighborhood mom, she would cook and everyone was always welcome to come and eat after holidays and birthdays and Christmas, if we didn’t play with toys, they would disappear and it wasn’t as if they disappeared because they got thrown away. My mom just gave them to other children, you know? And so, we learn to you, don’t ask for what you don’t want. You, when you receive things, you always think about other people. And we were always open to sharing everything. So I guess I’ve been a humanitarian all my life. I organize blood drives and book drives when I was in elementary and high school, I recall being a part. Yeah. Of oratory contest and the speeches, I would always do where like Martin Luther King or Sojourner truth are not a woman. And when I look back now, I felt so much and I would win these competitions because I felt so much when I gave these speeches because I would study them they were like become a part of me and maybe they became more a part of me than I even knew, because I believe in the words that I spoke. I believe that them, and I definitely believe them now. So, all of those, positive images, all of those pro empowerment pro development pro love pro-life pro light pro hope messages.
Those unification messages were instilled in me since I was young. And I guess they kind of developed me into the woman that I’ve become. now in my older age…
Patrick Donovan: Oh, I wouldn’t call you older. You just keep getting better.
Felicia Henderson: Thank you. That’s a very generous compliment.
Patrick Donovan: Yes ma’am. What is TheWay2Inspire.org? What was the catalyst for its creation?
Felicia Henderson: So we all use certain terms in our lives. When I was a child, I used to read the dictionary because I had this innate love for words. I never knew I was going to become a communicator but I just always, I read a lot and I always wanted to know what words meant, because I always read beyond my age and, this phrase, the way always comes up in my mind. I’m a Virgo. I’m very structured and organized. So, there’s a “way” to do everything, for me, so I noticed that I always use the term “The Way.” This is the way you do this is the way you do that. I know in math and algebra A, plus B equals C. B plus A equals C, C minus A equals… There’s still, there’s a way, there’s a method to everything. And so, when I moved to Africa, I wanted to start this nonprofit and, in starting my nonprofit, the name of it was The Way.
And that was just what stuck in my head, the way foundation, the way foundation, the way foundation. So, I went to go and register it and they were like, well, the name is too general. You can’t do that. And I was like, well, what do you mean? I mean, nobody has an organization called The Way, but I went to Google and there was the way to do things.
And so, I guess that’s why it was too general. So, I decided I can’t let the way go. So, what do I do? I must turn it into an acronym. And so that’s how true health and empowerment for women and aspiring youth foundation was born. And we’re now in many, many, many countries and the aspects of it that I have in here in the United States, it’s obviously to help an empowerment for women and inspiring youth foundation USA, or TheWayUSA and, I think that the name is truly fitting because our motto is, “Motivating minds, inspiring nations and building global bridges.” We want to teach people how to be good people. We want to help people help themselves. We want to help organizations position themselves to help people. I believe that, everything happens by reason.
There’s nothing in life that has happenstance. And right now, in life, everyone needs to know the way. But right now, more than any other time, we as human beings need to understand that there is a way for us to get passed this. There is a way, for us to come out of this better than we were before. There is a way that we can get to the light or the better side of it.
There is a way that we can change everything that has happened and create a situation that this can never happen again. There is a way, but it can only happen if we work together. So, I think that that’s the way it’s all about.
Patrick Donovan: I am inspired, and I don’t say that lightly? Do you remember the TV series Andromeda? It was created by Gene Roddenberry. And in it, The Way, also known as Wayism, is a pacifist religion founded on the Magog, Prophet in the series, the anointed one, it teaches about the divine and entity of love and peace, the people of The Way follow this religion in the series, the beliefs are based in Zen Buddhism.
[00:07:50] The phrase “Blessed Be”, which is taken from Wiccan Neo Paganism is frequently used by the believers in the series. Some Wayist monasteries, reflected Gothic, architectural inspiration, and getting into what you said The Way could also be attributed to Taoism, as the study of Tao is literally the study of The Way.
It’s amazing that the correlation you’ve got in this and the TV series Andromeda that Gene created. He was a visionary and it’s amazing that you’ve got that. Those two words are so powerful, ya, know?
Felicia Henderson: They are, the, the thing is truly, Patrick, that words are powerful in themselves. And I think that’s why I love them so much.
So, it’s funny that you would mention that because I’m more of a spiritual person than I am a religious person. And I believe that the energy that we put into the universe into the world always finds its way home and back to us. That is part of The Way. We already know the way we always, we already realize the path it’s right before us.
Many of us cannot see it because we either refuse or it’s too difficult to follow the path, or we’ve yet to recognize that this is the way. So that’s really, I mean, I’m going to actually go in and do a little bit of studying in that I have delved into Taoism before, and I do study a lot. I read a lot of, because I do a lot of meditations. I believe that we have to be whole within ourselves, as I do a lot of self-introspection and searching and grounding within me and I find that I’m most creative in those times. These are the things that come out when, when I am in those places and so, again, Finding those things are helping me find the way, my way, what I was created for and what I was intended to do.
Patrick Donovan: Wow. It’s amazing. And I’m really getting into this because there’s a Zen Buddhists saying when the student is ready, the teacher will appear. And when the teacher is ready, the student will appear and sometimes that person is you.
Felicia Henderson: Absolutely! Most often it is, but do we listen? Can we hear?
Patrick Donovan: Difference between hearing and listening? We hear a lot, but we never listen!
Felicia Henderson: Absolutely. I definitely agree with that, Patrick.
Patrick Donovan: Thank you. So, with COVID-19 and over 1.8 million people testing positive in United States and over 109,000 people that have perished from it, what was the impetus for COVID Can’t Win. Tell me about it.
Felicia Henderson: Well, again, all of the projects that I create, and I’ve got more than 57 are born, not, they are born within me, but they are not of me. And I recognize that I was created to do what I do. So I’m just literally a vessel, but I realized that we were in a time where even the best of us, who’ve never been in any trouble at all, understand what it feels like to be imprisoned, to be bound by something. For the vast majority of us we’re bound in our mind. But in this situation, we’re bound by the laws of the land, the laws of the universe and the laws of our nation, the laws of people we can’t go out. We cannot engage with our fellow man.
Though we live in this very virtual world, I think for the first time, many people are realizing how important people are to people. How much we need one another, because we can’t just have a conversation. We can’t just walk down the street and ignore one another. And though we’re ignoring one another, vicariously, we know that someone is there.
But while we’re trapped inside the walls of our home, the walls of our body, but the biggest walls, which are the walls that our mind has formed around us as a protector and a barricade, but also to kind of disengage us because we don’t want to feel overwhelmed by what’s going on in the world.
We realize for the first time, how a lonely we are, truly alone. If you’re not married, if you don’t have immediate people in your home, you could be sitting home alone with no one, literally no one to interact with. I can guarantee you that even the people who are virtual and say, “Oh, I hate phone calls,” they pick up their phones now.
Cause it’s the only connection we have. I tell people that regardless of who we are, regardless of what our race, sexual orientation, gender, social, economic standing, educational background, whatever it is. Our common thread is our human frailty. We need one another because we’re all afraid of the same thing and we all aspire to the same thing, but I realized that during this pandemic, we didn’t have one another anymore. How many people are trapped in this space and they don’t have hope anymore. They don’t even know when it first started. Everybody was like, Oh, it’s going to be over in a week. Oh, we’ll be fine.
Now they’re like, well, I don’t know when this is going to end. I’ve lost my business. Well, what is business going to be like after COVID I’ve lost family members, people that I’ve loved people that I cherish and I can’t even properly mourn them because I can’t be in a group. My, my child has just achieved an accomplishment that we’ve built towards for all their lives and we can’t celebrate it.
We can’t share that with the other people we care about. And so COVID Can’t Win was born of the need of the world. Just say it. Say it out loud, because again, words have power. People need to say COVID Can’t Win. I can’t! Oh, they can’t stop me from engaging with my family because I can pick up the phone and call them.
I can stand out in my yard and say hello to my neighbor. I can go into my backyard and jump around and dance and sing and be happy. I can do those things COVID can’t stop me from living. COVID can’t make me lose my business it can make me re-strategize the way I look at business. But COVID can’t take anything from me that I don’t give it willfully.
We need to have more messages of that. So, with this project, we created, a few things. One of them was I joined a campaign called One Day One Gives. So for me it was do one good. And it just inspires people to do one act, one random act for someone to make them feel connected, call someone. Go outside and pick up, refuse off the front of your neighborhood street. Whatever it is, just let the community, see you engage with people socially distanced, be responsible. Well, let the world see you feel the sunshine on your skin. Feel and realize that you are still alive. You are still breathing. There is still hope.
Patrick Donovan: You know, it’s amazing. You’ve answered my next two questions. You said, I said you described the COVID as a modern-day prison. Why make that analogy? You did. And UNICEF calls the COVID-19, the world’s most dangerous threat. How do you believe COVID Can’t Win will help combat this deadly virus? You answered that one.
And you answered the next one. What do you believe is the solution for beating COVID besides social distancing and everything that CDC has told us, is there another solution? And you just answered that one with going out. Being outside and engaging with your neighbors and everything, but in a very safe way.
And I caught something when you said that we have these walls. What about doors? And let me explain what I mean. There’s a story about Houdini and he did one of his last escapes for the Queen of England. And he was told to be shackled, in his scivies, in the deepest, darkest dungeon they had. He was to be locked in his cell and left there, and he went from the stage and he was taken down and he said, he’d be right back. Well, after the door was closed, the guard left, and Houdini released himself from his shackles and he began working on the lock.
Because he was working with safes and that’s how he became an escape artist. He worked on it and the people up on the stage began to wonder it was an hour, then another hour and then three hours and people began to leave and the Queen was worried. But she kept to his wishes, do not come from me!
Down below on the deepest, darkest dungeon Houdini was sweating. It was now eight hours and couldn’t unlock the door. He was so tired. He leaned up against it. It was open. He fell flat on his face. And the moral is the only doors that are locked are the ones within your mind.
Felicia Henderson: And I just got chills. When you told me that story, I’ve heard it before and I tell people often that you are your biggest obstacle, what you speak. Is what you receive. If you speak hope, you will receive hope. If you speak life, you will live life. If you speak, growth and positivity those are the things that will grow within your garden, because what you put into the universe always finds its way home. So, when we say we can’t. We literally cannot because we don’t even see that we can.
Patrick Donovan: Whether you can, or you can’t you’re right. Napoleon Hill.
Felicia Henderson: Absolutely. And so, I just think that sometimes we are our biggest, our greatest challenge and, our biggest deterrent, because we see something is such a big insurmountable task.
This dream is bigger than me. This is bigger than me. I can’t do this when it’s exactly what you can do. That’s why it came your mind because it’s meant for you to manifest it. If it wasn’t, you could have never even imagined it.
Patrick Donovan: Right. What do you believe the long-term impact is of our way of life, community schools, and our ability to perform our most sacred tasks like working again and how can COVID can’t win, help us through that ?
Felicia Henderson: Okay. Well, I think that some of our greatest challenges are going to be looking at this moment, where are we in business? Where are we in education? How are we coping with these things? And how can we, evolve so that if this happens, it can’t create this huge impact on our lives.
Online schools have existed forever. I ran a school in Africa. I had students in Africa who were registered in online schools here in America. Clearly now that’s a very viable option. There have been years of people speaking about not outsourcing but working from home. It’s a win-win for a lot of people. It’s a win for organizations and it’s a win for employees. For years, major corporations said it wasn’t possible, but now we see it is.
So how do we take what we have and, you know, build upon it. I think that we should pick the best of these times and develop upon them re-strategize the way we look at small and medium businesses and reorganize the way major corporations interact with small and medium. And that would also create a lot of new businesses because you have room for consultancies, you have room for, interim staff.
Look at how we organize our healthcare. It doesn’t have to be, it could be universal now so that everyone deserves it. And whether you’re working for a major corporation or you’re working for a small and medium, or you’re one of those interim staff, you still have to be taken care of health wise. So, I think that we should definitely build on where we are, and I think that there are a lot of amazing possibilities out there that are cropping up. If we just step outside of our box, our comfort zone, that little bubble, that way.
Patrick Donovan: So lastly, I want you with the last couple of minutes we have left, please talk to me about your upcoming fundraiser campaign and so our readers and listeners, can understand. So, the last part of this conversation is all yours.
Felicia Henderson: Okay, great. Well, we’ve been talking all day about COVID. This is a real thing that’s happening in our world. We’ve lost so many people outside of the lives we’ve lost, we’ve lost so much potential. And we’ve lost so much hope we’ve got this project going on right now. COVID Can’t Win and, it’s going to be a 21-day fundraiser.
It’s going to be running on the Global Giving Platform and we’re just asking people to join in with us so that we can embed the hardest hit cities that are dealing with the COVID’s right now, like our new York’s, our Chicago’s, Detroit’s, definitely our Minneapolis’, because outside of the COVID with everything that’s going on, they just need support, period.
Patrick Donovan: What is the length? What is the length for that? And on the global giving and you have a Facebook page and anything else.
Felicia Henderson: Yes. So, the link for the global giving is, well, my website, if they go there, it’s TheWay2Inspire.org. That’s “The Way”, the number “2”, “Inspire.org” or go to my Facebook page @theway, the number 2, inspire, (www.facebook.com/theway2inspire) via there you’ll see the link that. Goes into the fundraiser, which started on Monday (June 8th 2020) and we’re going to be going again, once these fundraisers over where we’re buying masks, we’re providing, different types of initiatives within the community to touch the people, food stuff and again, places like Minneapolis will get a lot more intensive support.
So we need people to help us join together to support this call so that we can help the well, realize that COVID Can’t Win. Please make sure you I’ll take a look at my page, see what the campaign is about and if you’d like to get involved, I’d be happy to talk to anyone who would like to get involved so that they can be instigators in their community and help me touch more people because we need people to help people.
Patrick Donovan: Thank you very much. I want to make sure I get those links up. Please send them to me. And, it’s been a pleasure speaking with you, Felicia. Thank you for your time, your energy and your thoughtfulness. Have a great day.
Felicia Henderson: Thank you so much, Patrick, for having me. You have an amazing and blessed day. And remember you are light.
Patrick Donovan: Thank you have a great day. Take care, and God bless you,
Felicia Henderson: Alright bless you. Bye.
Causes we care about:
Donate today: Donate to COVID Can’t WIN on the Global Giving Platform
Email: Email Felicia