Sankofa, the HWS Black Student Union, recently hosted its annual Charity Ball which raised more than $2,000 and awarded scholarships to two Geneva High School (GHS) students: Tiara Carter and Isaiah Richardson. Sankofa created a scholarship program for GHS students that recognizes both academic excellence and community service.
“The creation of this scholarship speaks to Sankofa’s multiple commitments, in seeking to support students of color at HWS and also students in the community,” said Solomé Rose, staff adviser to Sankofa and the program manager for global and community leadership at the Centennial Center for Leadership. “I am so proud of the work they have been doing to strengthen the community.”
The theme of this year’s Charity Ball was “Black Diamonds,” representing the strength, beauty and uniqueness of the Black diaspora. This year’s event took place on Saturday, March 26 at the Geneva Ramada Lakefront. The annual event celebrates the yearlong efforts of the organization and its members, as it also raises money to benefit local young people.
“Sankofa has been planning this event to not only engage the audience but to provoke thoughts about what is happening on the continent of Africa as well as in the United States and more directly in Geneva, N.Y.,” said HWS Area Coordinator Josh Kolapo, a staff adviser to Sankofa.
Award-winning artist, writer, performer, educator, and activist Dominique Christina served as keynote speaker. Christina holds four national titles in the three years she has been competing in slam poetry, including the 2012 Women of the World Slam Champion and 2011 National Poetry Slam Champion. The Charity Ball also featured a dinner, live performances, dancing and a silent auction.
Members of Sankofa have worked extremely hard to put together a unique and exciting annual program for more than 15 years.
“It is such an important event because it demonstrates the commitment we have to the Geneva Community,” Rose said.