Christian award-winning community champion and trailblazer, Gloria Florence Cameron MBE, recently passed away quietly in her sleep. Born in Jamaica, she migrated to Britain in 1957 and settled in Brixton, South London, where she devoted her life to serving the Black community.
Gloria’s community work started in 1958, when she joined St John’s Interracial Club in Brixton. She went on to start the Caribbean Folk Cultural Company (CFCC), which preserved Black culture and heritage through music, storytelling and dance. In 1987 the late Edward Seaga, the then Prime Minister of Jamaica, presented her with the Medal of Appreciation for her Cultural Awareness and Community Development in the UK.
Throughout her life, Gloria achieved a number of firsts, as well as founded community initiatives. In 1973, she became one of the first Black women to be appointed as a Justice of the Peace, and worked in the role for 16 years. She was also a lay visitor at Rochester Borstal, where she provided support for young boys.
She was a founding member of the West Indian Parents’ Action Group (WIPAG), which ran a day nursery and family services. Between 1978 and1987, it is estimated over 410 children and families used and benefited from the service.
In 1980, Gloria received an MBE from Queen Elizabeth II, for services in Community Development, Social Community and Race Relations.
Her commitment to culture and heritage extended to becoming one of the original executive board members of the Black Cultural Archives in 1980, paving the way to the development of a dedicated building, which is now a focal point in Brixton.
In 2016, Gloria wrote Case Dismissed, an autobiography of her amazing life.
She believed passionately in knowing your heritage and culture, and loved being able to perform with the CFCC to educate, motivate and entertain. She helped many during her lifetime, and will be greatly missed.
Gloria Cameron MBE is survived by seven children,
17 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.