Brimestone Update

USASSCA members telling stories
USASSCA members telling stories








We are almost done!  All the stories for The Sudan and African American Oral Storytelling Project have been collected.  The stories are currently in the process of being translated.   Over the past year Kuumba, the United Sudan and South Sudan Communities Association (USASSCA) & CDF of Clarkston, GA has worked diligently on this venture.   From the initial gathering of the three entities in October 2013, to the recent “Tell Me a Story” Festival in May, we have made huge strides in meeting our goals.

The next steps include:

  • Reviewing the collected stories
  • Editing the stories into performance format
  • Coaching the Sudanese tellers
  • Kuumba Storytellers selecting stories to include in their own storytelling programs
  • A final concert presentation of the selected stories with USASSCA

Thanks to everyone for all of your hard work and continued support!

Deborah Strahorn – Brimestone Grant Coordinator

3 thoughts on “Brimestone Update”

  1. WHERE DID THE TIME GO? …. it seems like yesterday when Kuumba Storytellers of Georgia and the Sudanese Families partnered together on October 26, 2013…We had a Meet and Greet session as Kuumba Storytellers of Georgia received the NSN Brimstone Grant and the rest was HISTORY….On November 13, 2013 we broke bread together forming friendships and stories. Today was a special day 9-20-14 almost a year later as we are approaching the end of our project…… We heard the same stories from the same initial Sudanese Friends….but his time their stories showed all of the qualities of a Great Story. The workshop tips that were suggested from the Workshops of the Kuumba Storytellers were used to enhance their stories. It has really been a wonderful experience from the Beginning to the Ending as Kuumba Storytellers, LaVerne Amponsah and I attended every meeting, workshop, and festival and we embraced our new families connecting together as “ONE”. I can truly say that our mission for Connecting Communities Together Through Storyteller has been SUCCESSFUL. All of the Sudanese Storytellers were “AWESOME”. Kummba Storytellers who served on this project were …Deborah Strahorn, Project Manager, Workshop Facilitators …Ernestine Brown, Esther Culver, LaVerne Amponsah , Janice Butt, Chetter Galloway and Gwendolyn J. Napier. Many thanks to Roberta Malavenda, and to all of our Sudanese Friends of the Clarkston Community. We were all born to WIN and the Brimstone Grant made it all POSSIBLE.

  2. ITS SO HARD TO SAY GOOD BYE TO YESTERDAY….. Kuumba Storytellers Of Georgia members LaVerne Amponsah and Gwendolyn J. Napier were invited back to be a part of the Clarkston’s CDF N.E.T. Celebration on Tuesday, December 23, 2014. We had another opportunity to fellowship with some of our Sudanese friends that were involved in the Brimstone Project. Kuumba Storyteller, LaVerne Amponsah shared reading activities with the families and Kuumba Storyteller, Gwendolyn J. Napier shared Art and Craft activities with the children and later shared a Story with the families from the Collection of Children stories that were collected from our
    Sudanese friends. The story chosen was one that was told by Emmanuel Solomon, “Who Will Put The Bell Around The Cat’s Neck”. This story was one that he remembered from his Childhood and will be published in the Book Of Children’s Stories. I was so honored to perform this story for the families and the children. “Thank You” Emmanuel for giving me permission to share your story. The Celebration was “GREAT” . LaVerne shared various ways for the parents to communicate with their children through stories, reading, singing, finger plays and music. The parents were really engaged in the activities and the children were engaged in the crafts that were made. We made linking circles out of Pipe Cleaners together to show “UNITY” working together..all of the children added colors. I saw a glow of magic in the eyes of one of the children as she and I shared a story game together “STORIES ARE MAGIC”. The families and children merged together to hear the last stories for the year of 2014. The families had an opportunity to be so expressive through the sounds of the Drum. As I played the drum… Hands and feet were clapping and tapping and smiles were glowing like the sun. We were all connected again as “ONE” having SO MUCH FUN… We had so much delicious foods to eat…the fellowship was a great way to begin the Winter Holidays and to end the year of 2014. LaVerne shared Books with the parents for their children. They were all so appreciative as they departed expressing a Sincere “Thank You” for a “Wonderful Celebration” Yes, all of this happened in the City Of Clarkston. Many thanks to Roberta Malavenda and the CDF Admin Staff for a Job Well Done. The Clarkston Community – a Great Place to Be… As a member of the Kuumba Storytellers Of Georgia, the Brimstone Project has been one of my greatest experiences as a Storyteller. I have learned so many different ways to embrace an audience and so many ways to enhance a great story and mostly of all I have met so many wonderful Friends in the City Of Clarkston….a community that I didn’t know much about but now a Community that I will never forget. As I stated earlier…Its So Hard To Say Good Bye to Yesterday…… the Brimstone Project is almost ending but the relationships and bonding with the Clarkston Community will last forever. Looking forward to more Celebrations in 2015.

  3. BRIMSTONE PROJECT STORY SHARING WITH KUUMBA STORYTELLERS OF GEORGIA MEMBERS AND FRIENDS…. This is my Story… lights, action -cameras…….January 10th was a sharing story day of Stories from the Brimstone Project with the Kuumba Storytellers Of Georgia. We shared many stories from the Collection of stories to be published that were shared by our Sudanese friends in Clarkston. Some of Kuumba Storytellers who were a part of the Project shared the stories….Ernestine Brown, Deborah Strahorn, Esther Culver, Janice Butt and Gwendolyn J. Napier. We shared stories with our Members and friends at the January -2015- Monthly Kuumba Meeting. They really enjoyed the stories; making comments followed by the Stories such as: That was a great story….. I really enjoyed that story…. That story reminds me of one of my childhood stories…the comments continued….. As the stories were shared by the Kuumba Storytellers, my mind begin to travel back to Clarkston almost a year ago when we had the meet and greet session with our New Clarkston Sudanese Friends. My mind had such wonderful memories of the great fellowships, delicious foods, outstanding learning interactive workshops, story bonding, embracing cultures, smiling faces, hugs, hand shakes and high fives, beautiful children and families, different languages, drum making, great stories and so much more. Kuumba Storytellers on the Brimstone Project worked so faithfully together through planning, organizing and presenting. Our Project Manager, Deborah Strahorn kept us on “Task” and special thanks to Kuumba Member Chetter Galloway who made all of the blogging possible for all of us to share. We received so much support from Roberta Malavenda and ‘CDF”. Our new friends and families were so cooperative and willing to receive new information and share in return. I would like to personally thank all of our new Friends in Clarkston for an experience shared for a life time. Outstanding leadership was shared with the groups from Masmat, Emmanuel and so many others.

    This will probably be my last post….but please know that I will always remember the Brimstone Project and the Sharing of Stories with Our Sudanese Friends in the Clarkston Community. I will continue to share your “Stories” for all ears to hear. The Brimstone Storytelling Journey was “AWESOME”.

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