In 2019 Cameron Boyce changed his human body and became an immense legacy of love that has been shared with us thanks to his loved ones when they decided to release The Cameron Boyce Foundation as an invitation to all of us to be part of this movement that pursues sharing hope, change, the end of gun violence, a cleaner and kinder world, social awareness, and the opportunity to join efforts to cure epilepsy and eliminate Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP).
Just like most of you, we started to love Cameron Boyce when his very first projects came out on the Disney Channel and kept on loving him with every new project he was involved with. Years later, in 2017, we had the blessing of interviewing and having a photo shooting with him that we treasure in our hearts. Consequently, after noticing the great job that has been done in The Cameron Boyce Foundation, and been experiencing the unprecedented events that surrounded the world during the past year, I decided to approach them to talk about this article and they gladly wanted to get involved.
Therefore, keep reading to be part of this conversation with Libby and Victor Boyce, Karan Brar, and Sophie Reynolds, four people who knew Cameron Boyce like no one else, and have committed themselves to share in the world this unending legacy of love.
Libby and Victor Boyce: the devoted parents who planted the seed of love
Q: For me, particularly, it is somehow hard to ask this question because everyone who knows or has followed the work of your beloved son, Cameron Boyce, has felt the instant rush of joy, love, and energy he still spreads in this world. Nevertheless, how have you experienced the love others have for him? And what can you tell us about Cameron’s legacy nowadays?
It does not surprise us that people who met or worked with Cameron understand the positive and authentic energy that he emitted. What is surprising is that people who never met him also somehow felt this energy as well. Having been around a lot of young people in the entertainment industry, I think authenticity can be hard to discern because, in public, they are all asked similar questions and are often represented in a certain way. However, Cameron must have somehow stood maybe in a subtle way that you just can’t explain. Cameron grew up in LA, which is somewhat unusual in the entertainment industry. His family roots and genuine love of life played a big part in his interactions and personality. For this, we are so grateful.
Q: For those who might not know it yet, what is The Cameron Boyce Foundation?
TCBF was established within days of Cam’s death in order to continue all of the philanthropic work he had begun. His family and his close-knit village of friends are all involved in seeing this through. In addition to bringing clean water resources to third-world countries, Cameron was a big advocate for ending gun violence and giving young people alternatives to violence and negativity through creative outlets. So, TCBF is funding programs that get us closer to Cameron’s passions and wishes to better the world. Also, because epilepsy is what took his life, TCBF’s mission includes epilepsy awareness and research.
Q: Can anyone get involved with the work you do for the foundation? Even teenagers? How?
They can take a photo of themselves wielding something that represents peace for them and then post it with the #wieldingpeace. In addition, they can volunteer in their own community to helpothers. They can also contribute to NO bullying environments and be kind to others.
Q: Could you tell us more about what the Wielding Peace campaign is and how to be part of it?
Wielding Peace was a campaign Cameron started that aimed to encourage young people to find creative and peaceful outlets as alternatives to negativity and violence. He took some pictures of himself with peaceful objects and wielded them in place of a gun. It is a statement piece meant to inspire young people who he influenced. Young people should explore creative outlets like music, art, photography, or anything that they enjoy and express themselves in a peaceful way. They can post a Wielding Peace picture with the #wieldingpeace.
Q: Most teenagers find it difficult to express to others they feel like needing help, they are experiencing mental issues or they have a medical condition. Which advice would you tell them?
Find an adult who you feel safe and comfortable with and talk to them about your feelings/challenges. This can be a parent, guardian, teacher, friend’s parent, or someone else in your community. In addition, it is important for teenagers to understand that everyone goes through hard and confusing times when they are young. We learn from our experiences and mistakes. Know that help is out there and there are many things that they will find on their path that bring them comfort. When I was young, I had a journal that I wrote poetry in… I still look at it today and think back on how far I have come.
Q: How about your environmental commitment?
Our family is vegan because it is healthy and we became educated about the meat industry which was an eye-opener. We are very aware that humans play a big role and greatly impact our environment in a negative way. We will always support efforts to improve our earth. This was so very important to Cameron. Being well-informed is powerful.
Q: Cameron’s fans and some of his coworkers and friends have never ceased to show you their support. Would you find a way to thank them enough? Which words would you like them to know?
They do it for their love of Cameron and we get that on a cellular level. We witnessed Cameron’s deep friendships and that does not end with his death. Each of us is keenly aware of our respective loss and it is all mutual. We treasure one another and we will love them unconditionally forever.
Q: Are there new projects coming through The Cameron Boyce Foundation? What can you tell us about it?
We are supporting Guitars over Guns, Inner-City Arts programs, a collaboration with Gabby Giffords Foundation, and continued epilepsy research, and other creative arts projects for young people. We are also working on some tools for school teachers to use to help young people express themselves in positive ways.
Q: Anything else you would like to share with Vanity Teen?
We have some exciting projects coming this year that will allow us to further our efforts in creating awareness for SUDEP, as well as ending gun violence. For more information, you can visit TheCameronBoyceFoundation.org and follow us on Instagram: @thecameronboycefoundation
Karan Brar: the partner in crime
Q: After the film Diary of a Wimpy Kid, when the TV show Jessie came out, there were not many Indian descendent characters young people could feel related to. How and when did you realize the impact you were making in media when talking about representation?
I realized those characters had an impact on representation shortly after Jessie came out. When the show aired, I received a lot of emails and letters from Indian/Asian American fans who genuinely appreciated seeing someone who looked like them on screen. Until that point, I was acting because I had fun doing it, but I quickly realized it’s a bit bigger than that, and representation in film and television plays a pivotal role in our society.
Q: As we can see from some of your public appearances, and from your social media posts, there are several social issues that you care about like Black Lives Matter, and voting in the US elections. What motivates you to keep using your media to speak out for the right causes?
I think it comes down to something as simple as this: if you have a voice, use it for good.
Q: You also have been supporting projects about clean water and some other environmental causes, why do you think young people should act right now to keep saving our planet?
We only have one planet, and unfortunately, it’s fallen onto our generation’s shoulders to undo the damage that has already been done. It’s important for us to stay vigilant when it comes to protecting our planet and creating new sustainable means of living that are accessible to everyone in our community.
Q: So many have struggled to keep their spirits up during this trying time. Can you share a bit about how you are maintaining your sanity during the pandemic?
Therapy. Lots and lots of therapy. As a society, our mental health has been pushed to the breaking point and I think the best thing we can do during this pandemic is creating time to take care of ourselves and our mental health.
Q: Let us focus on one main topic: The Cameron Boyce Foundation; what can you tell us about your direct participation in it?
Yes! I act as one of the many advisors to the foundation who help guide where TCBF is going and how we’re helping.
Q: Thanks to you, the world knew the following famous expression: “Your partner in crime, Cam”. What can you tell us about it and the importance of keeping sharing the everlasting legacy of Cameron Boyce?
Cam signed that at the bottom of a letter he gave me on my 15th birthday and I’ve held on to it ever since, so when I decided to get a tattoo in his honor, I thought it was really well-fitting. Cam was an extraordinary person that was doing so much good work in this world and what we’re really trying to do is continue that work.
Q: How can other young people get involved and collaborate with The Cameron Boyce Foundation?
There are three main ways young people can get involved with TCBF! 1. Donate or check out the TCBF merch 2. Keep up to date on our projects through our socials/website 3. Spread the word using your own voice.
Q: The Cameron Boyce Foundation also promotes the importance of wearing masks nowadays. What can you tell us about it?
The pandemic has been challenging for everyone to say the least, and the only way out of this is by working together and wearing a mask. That’s why we’re stressing the importance of wearing a mask; we believe that everyone should be doing their part.
Q: We all love everything you do. Please, could you tell us something about your future projects?
I’ve got a few things in the works right now that I can’t talk about yet, but stay tuned!
Before we go
The always caring Sophie Reynolds also wanted to share with all of us a message to remind us that love will never go and the life of Cameron Boyce will continue inspiring us to be better people and we can share this love by taking action and collaborating with The Cameron Boyce Foundation:
“Being able to continue Cameron’s legacy through the foundation has been an incredibly special experience for us all. As his friend, it’s been very fulfilling to be a part of sharing his message and voice with the world. This year we’re especially excited for a new partnership starting with Guitars Over Guns, launching a program bringing music education and mental health together to support young people in LA. We’re beyond grateful for the continued support from people all over the world and are hopeful for what’s to come this year.”
After realizing what the parents of Cameron Boyce and two of his closest friends have said, and as a person who has been experiencing through the years how people continually have shown the love they still have for him, I feel like every word I could say will fall short if we pay attention to actions of those who have been supporting his dreams and social concerns during the last two years; thus, let me just say this: keep abreast of every new project of The Cameron Boyce Foundation, collaborate, follow its social networks and try your best to be kind to yourself; also, do good to others and take care of the planet because there is no better way to share Cameron Boyce’s legacy of love.