Even with the best intentions, fundraising galas can be stuffy and formal. African Leadership Group (ALG) has found the perfect formula for its annual Afrik Impact Gala at the Denver Botanic Gardens. Guests can and do dress to the nines, yet remain happy and comfortable in beautiful, open-air surroundings. It’s always great to see honored visitors from Africa, as well as elected officials and other supporters who come from around the state and the region. There’s an abundance of pride and positive spirit displayed among guests, beginning with ALG’s founder and CEO Papa Dia. We look forward to this event every August.
On Saturday, Aug. 27, this year’s Afrik Impact theme, “Breaking Barriers and Building Bridges,” was evident from start to finish. The evening began with a VIP reception that featured a large delegation of guests from Senegal, including the Prime Minister of Culture. Attendees made their way to the outdoor main tent for pre-dinner hors d’oeuvres and beverages, with music from Cloud 9 Strings.
In addition to the Senegal dignitaries, others on hand included Colorado Congressman Jason Crow and newly sworn-in Colorado Springs Mayor Yemi Mobolade, the first Black man and first immigrant to lead the city. Darryl Collier served as emcee for the program, and became emotional as he read the proclamation from Gov. Jared Polis that declared August as African Immigrant Month in Colorado. Papa Dia spoke to the crowd, recognizing the spectrum of ethnicities. The program also included a group unity-poem reading, followed by a paddle raise.
Since its inception in 2006, ALG has organized multiple community events, engagements and discussions with programs focused on key issues such as education, career and job opportunities, business development, immigration and community involvement. Many other activities regularly reach thousands of individuals in the local community. ALG advocates for the entire African immigrant community—across national origin, tribes and language—to ensure continuous improvement to immigrants’ quality of life. For more information, please visit http://www.usalg.org.