Meet Solai Clarke


Solai Clarke

Hey, my name is Aqiera-Solai. Most people know me as Solai. Fun fact, my name Aqiera means light and Solai means sun. I was never given a true nickname, so I started going by Solai.. I am a recent college graduate of Five Towns College, representing the class of 2023. I was born to be an advocate. 

As a little girl, I was always willing to retaliate against anything I didn't believe in. Built into a society where children are hesitant to interject, I stood out like a sore thumb when I spoke up for myself. From this innate gift of mine, I was able to voice my feelings in the child welfare system. Currently, there is a lack of resources for children in the system seeking to further their education. These children are forced into picking their own career and applying to school without the proper assistance, resulting in a loss of benefits, and a lack of school choice and career.

I believe that in order for me to be a true advocate for others I must be true to my own narrative. For me to be true to my own narrative, I need to recreate my identity.Being so involved in the child welfare system can overpower the way I view myself. I was a person before I was placed into care, and I am a person outside of foster care. To choose my identity, I am discovering new interests. I am finding out things I like such as art, writing, watching movies and even new languages. This allows me to be Aqiera-Solai instead of a girl that was a ward of the state of New York. Working in an organization where I can utilize my first-hand knowledge of the foster care system, along with my desire to showcase the stories that don’t reach the mainstream media, has been an inevitable goal of mine. To achieve  this goal, I have to embrace the thing I have always dreamed of doing, such as sharing my story through the art of film and poetry.