Words from the founder, Melonie S. Grasty-Vazquez
(Wow! A Program to motivate, inspire and enhance the esteem, by way of knowing more about the African American Culture and Traditions. Plus the AACT Program incorporates the California framework for visual and performing arts within its programs. Yes, it is time for the AACT Program..
The Summer Camp (Temporarily Closed 2020 due to Covid-19)
Will return in 2021 ONLINE
Kids have fun learning or enhancing their knowledge of the African American culture through music, dance, art, cooking, song, poetry, and drama. They also learn about inspirational leaders modern as well as historical persons. Field trips are scheduled weekly and like our first year, expect a great performance at the end of the session.
The 2021 Summer Camp Dates are: TBA. Full day for ages 6-12 years and half day for 4-6 years.
Kwanzaa (Online for 2020)
Families have the opportunity to meet at the First Baptist Church of North Hollywood, CA to participate in the 7 day Kwanzaa activities. There's always an activity for kids and parents to work together relating to each of the Kwanzaa Celebration nights. Stay linked to our email list because times can change for super Special Kwanzaa events. Kwanzaa dates every even year, December 26 - January 1.
Harambe - Annual Fundraiser Event (Closed in 2020 due to Covid-19) Look forward to Online Fundraising Event for 2021
The Fundraiser Kick Off starts, Saturday in April. The actual date will be announced in January and the fundraiser will run for two weeks. The fundraiser ensures that we have professional teachers in the area of Dance, Drumming, Drama, Song, Music, as well as plenty of materials for the classes for our summer camp in July. The fundraiser will also increase our funds to have our professional complete the paper work for us to become a Non-Profit Organization. For more information and details please contact the AACT office at 818-419-9699. Please leave time for a return call. You can also email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why the AACT Program:
Growing up in Detroit after the Civil Rights Movement, I was so blessed to have teachers in my school determined to make sure that the next generation of students understood the movement, our history in the US and our culture. Culture was everywhere and kids knew we were quite a unique race. We ranged in color from the lightest of the light to the darkest of the dark and all the hues in between. We knew our culture from family, school and church and those bonds helped to cultivate high esteemed individuals.
Times have changed a bit. Fewer schools teach about the culture and traditions of the African American people, and families have moved away for better opportunities in other areas giving the grand kids less opportunity to make connections with traditions. As a former school teacher, I know far too well that higher self esteemed children are unstoppable when faced with obstacles or challenging situations. They tend to go through, around, over, under or just plan to break through it. When children know their heritage, their family, their traditions, their culture and know of successful people who have paved the way and positively impacted all people of this country, then their attitude is more of; "what can I do to build on it, make it better, or plan my own opportunity". High self esteem is important for anyone to be successful.
The AACT (African American Culture and Traditions)
The AACT Program is a family program centered around children. Children are the future of this country, of the world. The African American Culture, which has roots stemming from Africa, but includes the Caribbean, Latin American, Europe and of course generation upon generation of people in the USA. It is a vastly rich culture which has enhanced the American Culture in many areas. There are so many inventors, scientist, doctors, teachers, entertainers, business people, entrepreneurs, to name a view and I truly believe that the more people know of the African American peoples, the more we can expect greatness from the generations that follow.
As you peruse through the Summer Camp tab, know that the lessons taught that year are a small sample of the culture, and each year, campers will learn about different individuals, dances, music, stories, food, etc. Take a look through the Kwanzaa tab also. It might surprise you on how much fun we have in learning about ourselves.
As the AACT Program grows in my area, I hope that others would like to start their own chapter in their area. I look forward to welcoming charter members as part of a continually growing extended family. To continue the growth and education about the African American people can only tend to enrich everyone, the US and the world in a positive way.