A retired educator who assisted with the integration of the first set of domestics from the Caribbean has passed away.
Cedolph Hope, who chaired the committee that welcomed the newcomers in 1955 under the Domestic Workers Scheme, died 11 days after celebrating his 87th birthday. He was buried last Saturday.
“He loved his people and he worked hard in the early days with the late Don Moore to help these women from the Caribbean feel comfortable in their new surroundings,” said his son, retired provincial deputy minister and Ontario Provincial Police deputy chief, Jay Hope. “That was my inspiration to do the same in policing by encouraging others to join the profession and also helping to lift them along the way.”
Hope also chaired the planning committee that organized a banquet at the University of Toronto in 1958 to mark the short-lived West Indies Federation.
A 1946 graduate of Barbados’ Harrison College, Hope spent five years working in Curaçao as an oil refinery operator with the Shell Oil Company before coming to Toronto in 1951.
Human rights activist Bromley Armstrong was a neighbour of Hope in Scarborough in the 1950s.
“You have to remember there were not a lot of people that looked like us who were here at the time,” said Armstrong who attended the funeral. “So we always welcomed seeing each other. He was very friendly and engaging.”
Hope took an automotive course and secured employment with Elgin Motors while attending university part-time.
He left Eglin after a decade in the service and sales departments to enter the U of T full-time where he earned his first degree and Master’s in 1965. Armed with his certification, he embarked on a 25-year teaching career that culminated with him heading the English as a Second Language departments at Harbord and Forest Hill Collegiate Institutes.
“For him, education was paramount in the West Indian tradition,” said Jay Hope. “He had an insatiable hunger for knowledge, he adored the English language and he was a stern disciplinarian.”
After retirement, Hope volunteered at the Mid-Scarborough Seniors Centre welcoming desk and as editor of their monthly newsletter. He also practiced yoga and enjoyed watching the Toronto Blue Jays on television.
“He was a health nut who enjoyed going to the gym and eating healthy,” recalled his son.
Hope’s wife of 61 years, Yvonne, who retired as assistant head of guidance at Maplewood High School in 1993, died last July at age 85.
In addition to Jay, they are survived by children George and Kathy.
Memorial contributions for Cedolph Hope can be made to Camp Jumoke, 1457 Dundas St. W. Suite 203, Toronto, Ontario, M6J 1Y7.