Syian Wignal Sr. is a man who has a huge heart for people. He cares about all people. You can tell that through his interactions with others. You will see him laughing and smiling while he is having a conversation with a child, a teen, an adult, and those who are older than him. He has gone through a lot growing up in the toughest parts of Jamaica. He grew up where tourists aren’t allowed to visit because of gang violence and lack of safety.
Sy Sr. was running a sports ministry in Jamaica seeking to make a positive impact on children, youth, and adults through sports. His main sport is soccer but he also is quite good and basketball and track. When there was some college recruiter in Jamaica, Sy was running a try-out for college-age people who played soccer. He had his good friend and boss hand him cleats and shin guards so that he could try out. He thought he was too old to try out. It ended up that he was the only person from Jamaica that year to make the team.
Syian Wignal came to the United States in the summer of 2004 on a soccer scholarship. He played soccer all 4 years of his undergraduate degree in Biblical Counseling. These years laid a foundation for Sy. He would see homeless people around and realized that often people would not talk to him and they would just be ignored. He would remember what it was like growing up without food for over a day and eating only breadfruit off of their one tree for a year. It is surprising that he still likes that food.
While at The Master’s University, Syian met his wife his first week at school. She was his Week of Welcome leader. It is a running joke that someone always gets married from that group and he and his wife are proof. They have been married for 15 years and have 2 children who are 7 and 12 years old. His wife is a local public school teacher and his children attend local public schools.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Syian Wignal Sr. decided it was time to start a non-profit that would help the unhoused population that was growing like crazy during this time. Real Way Foundation is the name of the non-profit organization that he started and is currently building. This organization helps the unhoused and anyone in need with career skills and leadership training. He has a huge desire to make a major positive impact on this world and this seems to be one area where he can help empower people to thrive to be the best people that they can be.