The children of FONELISCO are cultural very sensitive and created their own drumming and dancing style. One local volunteer, Martin, started this in 2004. He created songs and different dance styles by himself and introduced it to the children.
In the beginning they used buckets as drums, because they had no real drums. But nevertheless all of the children liked it so much that they practiced more than three times a week. All of them would agree with the positive affects on their physical and cognitive abilities.
Asking Martin about the dancing style he would say: “We have lots of different styles because the children come from different parts of Tanzania and Uganda. Each region in Tanzania has his own style and so the FONELISCO CHILDREN DANCE GROUP is a mixture of the Bugobogobo, Chagulaga, Lukomyalume and Lusalo dancestyle.”
They use the dancing and drumming for different occasions, such as on country special events like INDEPENDENCE DAY or Christian events, for school graduation and also to thank for the good harvest and in rainy season to thank the “rain god” for supporting the crops with water so that they can grow and feed the people. They also welcome and farewell people with singing and dancing and often they just dance to make themselves happy in difficult times.
Their style is unique in Tanzania, so is their whole performance, including their dresses and self-made necklaces. They use all different kind of things from the nature like leaves, branches from the trees, animal skin, horns etc. to make their clothing.
Volunteers will always be welcomed with a special song and dance and will also have the opportunity to learn how to drum and dance, if they wish, so that they learn more about African traditional culture.
One big wish of the children for the future would be to become more popular with their performance by playing on different places in Tanzania and abroad to show people more about their personality, their culture and also to use it as a fundraising method for the FONELISCO organization.