Five Questions by Leslie Heigh
Freelance PhotoJournalist/Blogger for Social Esquire, SobeSavvy.com
The high five is a celebratory hand gesture that occurs after a triumph. The HEIGH Five is a series where we ask celebrities and personalities five questions and celebrate their achievements!
In this feature, we spoke with Tracy Mourning, founder of Honey Shine, Inc. on the eve of her 11th Annual Hats off Luncheon in Miami, Fl
1. Tracy, I’m curious. Why did you choose the theme ” HATS OFF” for your annual luncheon ? Why not Blue Dress or White Shoes ?
Growing up partly in Miami I went to various socials and church events where all of the ladies present wore fabulous and interesting types of hats. I find that women love to get all dressed up in their hats and give air kisses under the big brims and just have a lot of fun with it. It was a hit from the beginning and women look forward to it every year.
2. A lot of public figures throw around the term ” give back” when referring to their charity or philanthropic events, but in all actuality they only attach their names to these events and are not involved. I have lived in Miami now for 17 years and have witnessed how you and also Alonzo are actually full hands on when planning and executing every facet of your now legendary community benefit organizations.It is not just your name stamped on an invite… where does that dedication come from that it’s more than just your name attached to it ?
All the events we plan or sponsor are very personal to us. Alonzo and I don’t do what we do because we have to do it. We feel that the work that we do is part of God’s plan for us. We believe we are supposed to serve others. We are humbled and blessed that the opportunities have come to us and through us, but we don’t do it just by ourselves. We are lucky to have a great support team of folks who support what we do. Alonzo and myself are doing what we think we have been called upon to do.
3. Some folks have expressed to me that they are now suffering from “Charity fatigue”. There are so many charities and organizations out there all vying for that same dollar. How have you been able to not only succeed at overcoming that “charity fatigue ” obstacle, but excelling as your Hats Off event usually sells out every year ?
It is because of the relationships I have formed over the years. Relationships make all the difference in the world with people supporting our events every year. Even if people did not support my event, I would like them to support any event, charity or philanthropic venture that speaks to them as a person.
4. How did Camp Honey Shine come about ?
Growing up I noticed how numerous girls in the neighborhood would just be walking around with no purpose and nowhere to go. Summer camp was a big part of my life growing up. I wanted to give other girls the same types of opportunities to form life long relationships and experiences that enrich a life. It is open to all girls. I don’t like to use the term at risk girls. These girls may be in a at risk situation or born into an at risk environment but Camp Honey Shine tries to give them the tools and resources so that they can see there are choices out there so they are no longer at risk.
5. I have a personal question to wrap up my interview with you this afternoon. How do you define the difference between a friend and an acquaintance?
Time reveals who a true friend is. My mother always told me that if you pay attention, people will show you who they are. I used to think that everyone I met had my best interest at heart. I had to learn the hard way that is not always the case. The good part is some relationships that start off as a kinship, sometimes turn into a real friendship and that is a great thing.