By Ruby Hinojosa
On Saturday, June 20th Dolly Solomon, in collaboration with her Learning Group, held the fourth installment of the Tamejavi Culture and Arts Series (TCAS) which centered on Indian culture and its many facets including music, dance, and food. The Tamejavi Culture and Art Series consist of public, story-based events featuring the arts, cultural celebrations and traditions of local immigrant communities. TCAS is presented by the American Friends Service Committee Pan Valley Institute, a program that supports new immigrants organize for change and access the resources that are either unknown to them or elude them. It is also an organization that seeks to bring central valley immigrants from diverse cultures together to share, understand with one another and let their voices be heard.
In fact, Dolly Solomon, spoke of her experience with PVI as a participant of the Tamejavi Cultural Organizing Fellowship Program. She plays a great value on learning about other cultures in the valley and the similarities they share. An example she used was of a specific scarf of hers, something she used during prayer, which she found had been used in other cultures in different ways. In a graceful attempt at including other cultures she asked Salvadorian musicians to play a song that she both loved and felt similar to aspects of Indian cultural music.
Alongside this, Dolly and a few other guest speakers also expressed the many virtues both physical and spiritual of Indian cooking ranging from the medical, such as high vitamin C content in Indian Gooseberry and the antioxidant rich Turmeric powder, to the cosmetic, such as curry leaves being used to keep up the pigment of black hair.
Complete with dancing, food, and the informative lecture on the enriching aspects of Indian cooking, the Punjabi community from Livingstone put together and expose other communities to an elegant display of Indian culture with the hope of building a shared space within.