Cruise Celebration: The Sister Accord Foundation
The Sister Accord Foundation recently celebrated their 10th anniversary with partner AAA -- The Auto Club Group.
AAA – The Auto Club Group was honored to partner with The Sister Accord® Foundation for their 10th anniversary. The Sister Accord Foundation is a 501c3 organization focused on enabling girls and women to establish and nurture positive, supportive and loving relationships with each other. The celebration took place aboard Royal Caribbean’s Freedom of the Seas with a four-day leadership development empowerment conference, "Embracing Freedom to Live Your Best Life.”
The newly amplified Freedom of the Seas set sail from Miami, FL, and traveled to Nassau, Bahamas, and Royal Caribbean’s private island, Perfect Day® at CocoCay®. The ship offered an all-in-one adventure with amazing entertainment, waterslides at sea, resort-style pools and tons of activities. Plus, there’s a spa, arcade and an assortment of delicious restaurants to dine in.
Follow along with AAA Members and Auto Club Group employees Jasmin Lankford and Ayanna Robinson as they learn more about the inspiring work of The Sister Accord and experience an exciting Royal Caribbean cruise vacation. AAA Member and Auto Club Group employee Michael Campo was behind the camera capturing the journey.
Day One: Departing Miami, FL
At the beginning of The Sister Accord empowerment conference, everyone was gifted a t-shirt and a fragrance collection. Each fragrance matched with the meaningful theme of the day. The theme for the first day was “love.” Self-love and self-care are important parts of The Sister Accord, as the organization is dedicated to helping its members build their confidence, courage and self-esteem.
The first event began with a welcome message from The Sister Accord Foundation CEO and founder Sonia Jackson Myles, as well as remarks from AAA Vice President of Marketing Phil Malcolm. They announced the upcoming launch of "Safety in Sisterhood," a partnership with AAA that includes a series on helping women stay safe while traveling.
“AAA is about helping people to safely navigate through life,” said Malcolm. “We help people to safely navigate on the road. We help people to safely navigate through financial decisions. We help people to safely navigate through travel. And a big part of The Sister Accord Foundation is helping women to safely navigate through life’s challenges. And so, that’s why we partnered with The Sister Accord to help them accomplish their mission.”
Our AAA travel guides answered cruise questions and provided resources. Then, the CEO and founder of ITL Fitness, Iris T. London, coached the group through some fitness exercises and taught everyone how to dance The Sister Accord Slide. Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Mali Music closed out the night by performing some of his hit songs.
“I’m so honored to be partnered with a brand that so many people trust,” said Jackson Myles. “When you have trust like AAA has, it means so much.”
Day Two: Nassau, Bahamas
On the second day of the trip, the ship docked in Nassau, Bahamas, and the group headed to a reception hosted by Bruce LaFleur & Associates. The theme for day two was “joy.” The Sister Accord encourages its members to keep moving forward with joy in the face of challenges.
At the event, Jackson Myles announced the start of a new The Sister Accord Bahamian chapter. The keynote speaker, Senator Dr. Erecia Hepburn-Forbes, spoke about supporting the organization’s goal to reach one billion girls and women with a message of love for self and love for each other.
“The Sister Accord, to me, it represents sisterhood all the way around the board,” said The Sister Accord personal concierge Tia Rochelle. “It represents love and support. It represents a safe space for sisterhood. It’s something that has just been such an amazing place in my life and an amazing experience for me and my daughters.”
After the event, there was free time to explore the charm of the Bahamian capital. The Festival Place Welcome Center near the port hosts more than 40 local vendors with artisanal items. Plus, Straw Market is the go-to spot for authentic Bahamian hand-made treasures. Royal Caribbean also offers a variety of shore excursions, including the Atlantis Resort, Junkanoo Beach and much more.
Day Three: Perfect Day at CocoCay
It was a Perfect Day at CocoCay, Royal Caribbean’s private island. There was so much to do! CocoCay has the tallest waterslide in North America and the Caribbean’s biggest wave pool. There are several restaurants, a zipline, a helium balloon ride, and serene spots to relax on the beach. Enjoying the fresh island air was the perfect way to spend day three. The theme of the day was “peace.” The Sister Accord strives to help their members find their own version of peace.
“From day one, The Sister Accord changed my life,” said The Sister Accord member Angelica Graham. “I’m so happy to be here, so happy to celebrate. I’m glad that AAA partnered with The Sister Accord to help make this happen.”
Back on the boat for the evening, there was a financial literacy presentation from the CJPA Global Advisors CEO and founder, Earl A. Carr, Jr. There was also a panel discussion featuring The Sister Accord members, Carol Tonge Mack, Morgan A. Owens and Regina Shipman. They spoke about their individual journeys of finding peace and purpose.
Day Four: At Sea for The Sister Accord Day
Day four was full of celebrations for the annual The Sister Accord®️ Day, August 31. This historic milestone was celebrated with delicious cake and beautiful flowers. The theme of the day was “patience.” Having patience gives The Sister Accord members the ability to wait in expectancy on their personal journey to freedom.
“I’m so grateful to all of our sponsors and donors who are investing in girls and women around the world,” said Jackson Myles. “To be celebrating 10 years on the Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas ship with all of these amazing people coming in from all over the country, I almost feel speechless. But I’m so grateful that the girls and the women and the boys and the men who are here are being inspired to operate in excellence, to spread love, to tap into their greatness.”
The morning started off with lively performances from Mali Music and Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Stokley. We were even visited by Royal Caribbean Captain Persson. The keynote speaker was Yvette R. Simpson, Esq., MBA, author of "On Purpose: The Power of Authenticity & Intention"; Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for law firm, Ulmer & Berne LLP; and political commentator for ABC News. Mali Music, Stokley and Simpson were all recipients of The Sister Accord Leadership Award.
At the evening event, Sonia Jackson Myles announced that The Sister Accord is partnering with the Nelson Mandela Foundation and establishing a new chapter in Johannesburg, South Africa. The organization currently has four chapters in Africa. The evening also featured a moving performance from Grammy-Award winning gospel singer Yolanda Adams, who received The Sister Accord Leadership Award.
“The Sister Accord is important to me because it brings together young women from all parts of the United States, and now the world, to make sure that they are actually being sisters to one another,” said Yolanda Adams.
To learn more about The Sister Accord Foundation, visit their website.