Saturday, April 13, 2013

African Career, Education & Resource (ACER) Fair

Today I participated in the  African Career, Education & Resource, Inc (ACER) fair at Park Center High School,  Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. Service providers in such fields as health, employment, education, were there to showcase their services and share information on their programs.

I met people I know and new ones as well. The lady in the picture at the top here and on the left was my student at St. Olaf College about 13 years ago.

Some years ago, she read my book, Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences, and is an avid fan of it.

Other acquaintances who were there include Dr. Alvine Siaka, the coordinator of African Health Action and Rita Apaloo, coordinator of African Women Connect. Rita is also a long-term fan of Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences. As usual, we had much to talk about, concerning what we are trying to do with the African community in Minnesota.

Among the new people I met today is Iqbal Duale, Community Education Specialist for an organization called Planned Parenthood. We discovered that we have common interests and are involved in in cultural diversity issues. We plan to keep in touch.

It is heartening and gratifying to be with such people, whose commitment to social causes is unshakeable, and who are not deterred by problems and challenges encountered on the way.

A few days ago, I mentioned ACER, the organizer of today's fair. I did so in a blog post about a meeting of the board of the Afrifest Foundation. ACER and the Afrifest Foundation have decided to collaborate, and I decided to participate in today's fair partly to facilitate that collaboration. I am the chair of the Afrifest Foundation. I was delighted to meet the ACER volunteers and to note their welcoming and cheerful spirit.

I participated in today's fair under my business name, Africonexion. I had my table, seen on the left, where I displayed my books and other publications. I talked with people about the books and about my work as a cultural consultant dealing with Africans and Americans. As always happens, I met different kinds of people, including those who are working in institutions or organizations which require the kind of resources I offer, notably publications and presentations. I look forward to being in touch with these people, to learn from their experience and share my own experience.

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