Back to Afrika
One of the organisers, Paul Ras Simba Rock, said that SANKOFA, which is in its third year, was founded directly on the culture and heritage of Africa, not only in its present manifestations but also from a pre-colonial and pre-slavery perspective.
“This authentic African fair and culture show is an ideal activity that will educate persons on various aspects of Afrikan culture in an informal enjoyable environment. The idea of Sankofa is derived from the philosophy that states, in order for a people to truly progress in positive, healthy and prosperous lives they must draw energy from their past traditions and cultures. This energy accompanied with the attending knowledge manifested in the reality of our present social realities can only serve to further empower our people with special emphasis on the youth.
“The word SANKOFA in the Akan language of Akanland translates in English to “go back and get it” (san – to return; ko – to go; fa – to look, to seek and take). The Asante Adinkra symbol for SANKOFA is a bird with its head turned backwards taking an egg off its back, or of a stylised heart shape. It is often associated with the proverb, Se wo were fi na wosankofa a yenkyi, which translates “It is not wrong to go back for that which you have forgotten. The Akan people of Akanland use an Adinkra symbol to represent this same idea,” he said. Rock noted that each year SANKOFA carries a different theme and this year it is UBUNTU.
He explained: “In the African culture, Ubuntu is a word that speaks to our interconnectedness and the responsibility to each other that flows from our connection. ‘I am because we are, and since we are, therefore I am’ is a good example of the ‘self-in-community’ foundation that gives rise to sayings in Zulu, such as umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu – ‘It is through others that one attains selfhood.'” SANKOFA has been placed on the list of activities that will bring recognition to the Season Of Emancipation which runs from April to August and will be held on April 29 in honour for the champions of the freedoms we now enjoy.
“We salute our heroes from Kwame Nkrumah to Clement Payne. SANKOFA will comprise a heroes walk gallery, specially created games of an Afrocentric nature for both youth and adult, along with African inspired face painting and Henna Art. Literature, DVD’s, cusine, clothing, music and many variations of craft will be on sale at this event. Other elements of fairs such as jumping tents and pony rides will also be there on the day for the enjoyment of the children in attendance.
“An Open Mic will prevail throughout the day for those who wish to share a word or song, in the fun and knowledge sharing of the day. A cultural show in the evening will showcase drum, dance, song and spoken word. Various Pan-Africanist and cultural groupings will have information booths set up at SANKOFA to share with us some more about themselves. African music, Reggae, Hip Hop, Calypso and other genres of music with African influence will permeate the air on [that day]. “SANKOFA is a free activity that will be held from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. at the Belfield Community Playing Field in Black Rock. This is a family event and [we are asking] that parents dress children in African dress as they did for Africa day at their respective schools,” Rock said.
You can check out the website for more information: http://ourafrikanheritage.com/magazine/archives/1154