“Despite your personal struggles know and believe anything and everything is possible. With faith, perseverance, and an optimistic mindset, you will get very far in life.” ~Carmen Veal
TheBlackManCan heads back to the state of Connecticut. This time for an Exquisite Women feature. We bring to you a woman of high caliber. She has made it her mission to teach, motivate and uplift others to reach their highest potential. We proudly present to you Carmen Veal CEO and Founder of Hope 4 Autism & Head Designer of Sani Auri Boutique. Carmen has a discussion with TheBlackManCan about but not limited to the inspiration behind her endeavors and what it means for a woman to be well-dressed.
TheBlackManCan: Carmen, after learning that your daughter, Sania, has autism you performed a great deal of research to receive a better understanding of the disorder. You could have stopped there, but instead you decided to create the non-profit organization Hope 4 Autism. What inspired you to start the organization?
CV: I founded Hope 4 Autism after learning resources for parents like myself were unavailable. Not only did I struggle with the diagnoses, I struggled finding assistance to help me with the diagnosis. I realized there was a missing link between autism and the families affected by it. This is what mattered to me, this was the start of my inspiration.
TheBlackManCan: What was your first reactions to your daughters autism and what form of Autism does Sania have?
CV: My daughter is severely autistic. As most people now know, autism is vast in a sense of a spectrum of disorders; each child is effected differently. Sania is completely non verbal, lacks most self-help skills, and is almost completely socially awkward, amongst other things. My initial reaction to Sania’s diagnoses was fear, denial, guilt- a world of emotions that took a toll on me physically, mentally, and emotionally.
TheBlackManCan: Who are the individuals that make up your board of directors. How can people get involved with your organization?
CV: Myself as the Founder, Kristen Hopkins as the Public Relations Chair, Nazy Fayaz as the Resource Program Director, Melissa Griffiths as the Marketing Director, Angelic Smith as the Event Coordinator, and Derrick Neal as the Corporate Relations Chair. Anyone interested in getting involved can send a resume and letter/or of interest to email@example.com. Our website also list vacant positions and contact information for volunteering.
TheBlackManCan: What services are offered on behalf of Hope for Autism?
CV: We offer support groups once a month to the parents caring for a child on the spectrum, mini grants to low income families, health and education advocate services, and program resources both in home and in office facilities for the child on the spectrum.
TheBlackManCan: What are some of your organization’s past as well as future events?
CV: Last year we had two charity benefits that allowed us to focus on spreading the word on our organization and the services we offer. This year our focus is the same, only now we are promoting on a higher level. We have teamed up with sponsors and soon an organization with a similar focus as ours. We combine fashion and family fun while educating on autism to accommodate everyone at our charity events.
TheBlackmanCan: How has your childhood experiences shaped who you are now?
CV: I was raised in a low income household and lived in a very dangerous neighborhood. My experiences in childhood helped me yearn for something more. Such as bigger and better opportunities, success, and happiness. My upbringings helped create a drive in me to prove that I was different and would some day make a difference.
TheBlackManCan: You are President & Head Designer at Sani Auri Boutique.What is San Auri Boutique? Sani Auri Boutique is my fashion company.
CV: I am in the startup stages of opening the boutique but have been designing woman’s clothing for two years now. I currently offer designs for women in high fashion, subtle, and every day wear. The same designs will be available in Sani Auri Boutique!
TheBlackmanCan: When did you realize your passion for fashion?
CV: As a child…I loved the idea of creating something I could wear myself. It began with my love for colors and inspiration boards I’d create with clothes I’d cut out of magazines. My passion grew even deeper in high school when I was able to dress up and wear high heel shoes.
TheBlackManCan: What does it mean for a woman to be well-dressed?
CV: Well- dressed is defined look that is complete from head to toe. A women doesn’t have to reveal any body part and can still be classy and sexy. Well-dressed means she offers the complete package by dressing and impressing.
TheBlackManCan: Where do you see yourself and your endeavors in the next five years?
CV: I see myself owning two very successful businesses. I see Sani Auri being a lucrative franchise business and Hope 4 Autism offering services and assisting families all over the world. I see my vision with both my passions on international levels.
TheBlackmanCan: What words of advice would you like to give the youth?
CV: Never ever ever give up on your dreams! Despite your personal struggles know and believe anything and everything is possible. With faith, perseverance, and an optimistic mindset, you will get very far in life. The only thing in this world that could possibly stop you, is you!
“We as black men must carry and tell the life long story and uplift black women whenever we have opportunity to do so”, theblackmancan.org has a firm belief that this holds true. Throughout the world there are exquisite women who are making remarkable contributions to society. We want to take the time to highlight an exquisite woman each week. If you know a woman that should be featured please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org In that email please state who you are and why you are nominating this person. Please leave your contact information and the contact information of the individual you are nominating.