Sankofa Cultural Collective's (@SankofaCC) mission is to promote, preserve, and encourage the visual, performance and cultural arts and heritage of the African Diaspora community through educational, arts-based programs and cultural activities in the Greater Alexandria area.
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Our commitment is to supplement local educational resources and enhance the quality of life for Greater Alexandria residents through quality arts and cultural programming that celebrates the heritage and culture of the African Diaspora community.
Our activities and programs contribute to the overall 'quality of life' and vitality of the arts, cultural, and educational communities of Greater Alexandria, Central Louisiana and the state. We provide access to arts and cultural programming that might otherwise be unavailable or unaffordable for much of our target populations. In addition, our mission's work engenders cross-cultural understanding and fills a long-term gap in the arts and cultural landscape within the region.
Prior to the establishment of SankofaCC, in a city where 57% of the population is African-American, only one cultural arts agency existed whose mission reflects the heritage and culture of our core demographic (the Arna Bontemps African American Museum, a museum honoring the legacy of the late Harlem Renaissance author, poet and historian). To help fill this void in the Greater Alexandria arts community, SankofaCC began offering free cultural arts workshops in Alexandria in the Fall of 2014.
Presented by an informal group of individuals who value the arts and the African Diaspora community, the workshops were instructed by local and regional artists, craftspersons, and artisans. The initial workshop series included Bamboo Jewelry Crafting, Griot Storytelling, Afrikan Dance, Poetry and Spoken Word, and Afrikan Drumming. The workshops were held at various local venues, including the Rapides Parish Main Library, the Alexandria Museum of Art, the Bolton Avenue Community Center, and a facility managed by the Arts Council of Central Louisiana. The events were overwhelmingly received and drew participants from as far away as 90 miles.
Since then, our successes have guided us in the future establishment of creating cultural-arts based programs (the Sankofa Cultural Institute and Sankofa Academy) and a host of Community Outreach events and activities.