People from many different counties and different cultures were gathered at the Locks 3 and 4 in Downtown Akron for the Global Village Festival on a sunny, but chilly day, September 14, 2013.
It was a day to experience the tastes, music, arts, languages, dances, games, and traditions from around the globe that all contribute to the mosaic of Akron’s diverse community.
The Bhutanese/Nepalese refugee community was represented at the festival with two information booths and several dancers.
One booth provided information about the Bhutanese Community Association of Akron. BCAA president Bishnu Subba, secretary Prakash Biswa, and treasurer Tuk Rai gave out brochures about the Bhutanese refugees in Akron and talked with people seeking information about their experiences.
BCAA President, Bishnu Subba (left, seated) assists
Liz Kuhn (right, seated) as she demonstrates back strap weaving
A second booth presented woven bags made by refugee women who work with Liz Kuhn. Liz helps the weavers to create and market their handiwork. The foreground shows bags for sale on a table. More bags can be viewed at www.woveninexile.com
Several young Bhutanese teens did some Nepali dances, Kirat manglang k lang was presented by nine people in Kirati jewelries, and two men from Cleveland did the maruni dance with one of the men dressed as a woman. A large group of spectators gathered to watch these talented dancers.
Through efforts like the Global Village Festival, BCAA and Woven in Exile hope the greater Akron community will learn about the Bhutanese/Nepalese refugees, why they are here, and the fact that they are here legally as permanent residents through cooperative actions of the United Nations and the governments of seven countries.
Article written by Champha Hangma Subba, Terry Kuhn, and Michelle Wilson. Pictures were taken by Champha Hangma Subba and Nilam Ghimirey.
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