The Carleton University Somali Students Association (SSA) is organizing a Somali Night on Saturday, January 20th in Ottawa. Tickets are $25.
Muslim Link interviewed the organizers to explore how this is an ideal event to connect Somali students, young professionals, and non-Somalis who want to learn more about the Somali community.
1. Tell us about what the Carleton Somali Students Association has been up to so far this year?
We kicked off this school year with our fall kick off where students where introduced to the members of the SSA and had the opportunity to create bonds and solidarity with one another. We then hosted small monthly events in which students could come enjoy a night away from their school work and release stress. We named these events “bashaal season” (celebration season), and had two main ones of which consisted of Somali BK chat where individuals were able to express their opinions about controversial topics and the other event was a karaoke night where individuals were able to relax and destress.
2. What is the purpose of Somali Night?
The event will be an evening that will highlight the many different talents that we have within the Somali community. By bringing poets, speakers and a fashion show together to display the diverse group within the community, our goal is to showcase the history and culture of Somalia, in the hopes of creating closer ties.
3. Tickets are $25. What are people going to be getting for that price?
After purchasing a ticket our guest will be served delicious cultural food Our guests will also be showcased entertainment from poetry, to a cultural dance and a cultural fashion show with a modern twist as individuals who are not somali can also enjoy the entertainment. Our guests will also get the chance to be apart of a panel discussion with questions regarding our culture, community and stereotypes. At the end of the event our guest will be filled with cultural experiences for all to enjoy.
4. Tell us about some of the talent performing at your event?
As mentioned above some talents part of our event will be two poets that will reciting an original poem. A cultural dance performed by members of our community. A highly anticipated fashion show titled “Culture Meets Modern” meaning individuals will be wearing cultural pieces incorporated into modernized clothing. Finally, a panel with active individuals in the community with different opinions discussing topics about our culture, community, society and our generation
5. What would be the benefits of Somali young professionals attending your event?
Young Somali professionals will get the chance to have an experience not only learning Somali culture but celebrating it through music, fashion, and food in a fun manner surrounded by their community members. These young professionals will get the chance to meet new people, and make new connections that would be useful down the road.
6. If you are not Somali, but you really want to attend this event, what should you do?
This event is fully in English so individuals who are not Somali are able to understand and enjoy it with everyone. Nevertheless, this event is open to the public as it is to promote the culture to everyone, despite everything that is happening now we are reviving our culture and allowing individuals who are not aware of the Somali culture to get educated.