M.A.P Black Girls Rock: cultural heritage takes place on the dance stage

Stills of MAP-Black Girls Rock at UCOF Fashion. (Submitted: UCOF 2023)

In Fredericton’s diverse community, dance becomes a unifying force.

Making Africa Proud (M.A.P) – Black Girls Rock is a group of dancers dedicated to inspiring and sharing their cultural heritage with others.

“Dancing is something they do and they enjoy doing in our community,” said Saa Andrew, founder of Battle Of The Art NB.

M.A.P-Black Girls Rock’s members are from different countries in Africa and they joined together not only to inspire the community but also to share their culture with their dance.

Andrew said he had different opportunities to show his talents and culture. He added he feels “it is time to give back to the community” by helping the youth to find a space where they can express themselves through art.

“My goal was to take their talents and exceed what they do,” he said.

About working together with the dance group, Andrew said seeing them growing and their skills getting stronger made him “happy to work with them.”

Jeanne Muhawe, a member of the M.A.P-Black Girls Rock, said being part of this group allows them to do what they enjoy.

“We love dancing,” she said. “We made this group to give space to others who want to dance and have fun.”

Muhawe said through their dance, they show “love” for their culture. She added Saa Andrew saw their dancing, recognized their talent and gave them an opportunity to get better at it.

Andrew said one of the reasons why the group got together is “passion.” He added they have the goal to share their cultures and create a space where the young African community can find a sense of union and belonging.

“Young Africans need a space, where they can share their cultures… and the community can see how talented they are,” he said.