April 1, 2021
Dear Family and Friends of The Festival!
The International African Arts Festival (formerly the African Street Festival) turns 50 this year! We have had a phenomenal journey since our Bed-Stuy beginning on Claver Place. For five decades, even before it was popular or trendy, we have been a community-led institution that is and will forever remain squarely focused on centering Africa, its culture, its traditions, its values in everything we do.
While the history of this great institution is long and glorious, and though the stories are countless, we find ourselves at a crossroads as we approach our anniversary month. Frankly, we are in a financial crisis. The COVID-19 pandemic has dealt a heavy blow to the institution. Like so many of you who are running households, businesses, or organizations, we have struggled to stay afloat. After a year of trying to navigate a "new normal," we have come to the conclusion that we have to operate differently and more boldly. That is why we're turning to the community-at-large in an unprecedented manner. We are coming to you to ask for your moral and financial support. We are asking for your immediate and generous support NOW.The Festival theme this year is Hamsini ni Dhahabu ("50 is Golden"). So our GoFundMe fundraising goal is to raise at least $1,000 for each year The Festival has been in service to the community ($50,000).
Securing $50,000 over the next three months will help us recover from the loss last year. Typically, our annual budget for a week-long festival is $400,000 but in 2020, we lost approximately 70% of our revenue because of the pandemic. If we raise at least $50, 000 by June 30, 2021, then we have a chance of surviving and hopefully producing a festival in late summer 2021.
Your Donation Will Support These and Other Monthly Expenses
✅ Office space and utilities.
✅ Storage space for the stages, equipment, and supplies.
✅ Barebones operations, administrative, and technical staff.
✅ Public programs for the community-at-large.
Have you thought about life in New York without the International African Arts Festival? Dreadful! So please do NOT take The Festival for granted. Our future is non-existent without your support!
We aim to bring #IAAFestival50 back to Brooklyn at Commodore Barry Park late summer 2021. Can we count on you to help us sustain The Festival? If so, make a donation today. No amount is too small or too big!
You can also support The Festival by sharing this link with family and friends: https://gofund.me/1d2f0229
Visit this GoFundMe page regularly for updates. Share it often. Help us spread the word. REMEMBER, $50K IS is the minimum goal!
In advance, we give thanks for your support! Thank You, Asante Sana, Medaase, Shukran, E se Gan, and Gracias!
Dr. Segun Shabaka
Chair of the Board of Directors
INTERNATIONAL AFRICAN AFRICAN FESTIVAL Board of Directors
1. GoFundMe donations are deducted immediately from your bank account.
2. You can also donate offline by mailing a personal or business check, or money order to INTERNATIONAL AFRICAN AFRICAN FESTIVAL (located at 1360 Fulton Street | Suite 401 | Brooklyn, New York 11216.
3. We also accept donations via Cashapp ($IAAFESTIVAL).
4. In order for The Festival to receive your donation, please ensure that your donation is coming from a bank account in the United States and that you have a postal mailing address in the USA.
Photo Credits for this GoFundMe Page/Campaign: Lem Peterkin, Mpinduzi, Solwazi Afi Olusola, and Yaw Asare Aboagye.