Sunny Hostin Is Here to Help

By Tanya A. Christian

America has grown to love The View co-host for eloquently speaking her truth, but behind the camera what drives the South Bronx native is being of service.

Sunny Hostin was 7-years-old when she found her calling. It wasn’t intentional. It wasn’t even a welcomed discovery. But it’s a moment The View co-host says triggered something within her and unknowing defined her purpose.

On an outing with her father’s younger brother, Hostin witnessed a crime that would eventually change her life. The culmination of a love triangle gone terribly wrong, the husband of a woman the South Bronx native’s favorite uncle was in a relationship with stabbed him before her eyes.

“I’m not someone that is confrontational inherently or someone that is pugilistic,” Hostin explains to ESSENCE. “But I do become that way when I see an injustice, or when I see someone that is being taken advantage of, or that doesn’t have a voice. And I believe that it comes from that childhood trauma. So it drives me. It’s driven not only my career but my entire life.”

Last month, at a luncheon in New York City’s Plaza Hotel, the Safe Horizons board member was honored as a Help Hero by HELP USA. The organization founded in 1986 was established to combat homelessness throughout the United States. Today it builds new homes, provides shelter for people in crisis and centers itself in under-resourced communities to offer job training, youth development, trauma counseling and more. Hostin was recognized for her unwavering dedication to give a voice to the voiceless and her ability to inspire change in the areas of domestic violence and social justice.

“When I get these awards, I can’t say that I don’t feel I’m worthy,” Hostin says, “but it’s like I feel there’s so many other people that are doing bigger things if I’m being honest. But it’s still nice.”

Continue reading at ESSENCE.com.