The Importance of Education, Representation and Inclusivity

To fully understand the present, we must educate ourselves on the past. And to help create a more supportive environment in our world, where all are accounted for and valued, we must also look to the future.

Inclusivity and representation are essential to the mission of our Zumba® Love platform. It’s in this spirit that we strive to be an advocate for equality, opportunity, and justice for all Black people, by amplifying Black voices within our student and ZIN™ communities and raising funds + awareness for causes that further community outreach and education programs.

It’s our strong belief that in order to enact change, it’s our responsibility to set an example for our entire community by supporting organizations that move to the same rhythm as our mission! This month, February 2021, those organizations include:

CARE Elementary

Located in Zumba’s own South Florida backyard, CARE Elementary School sets children up for excellence, with a primary focus on literacy. Zumba is donating $10,000 to go towards the purchase of literature and materials focused on African-American history, culture and heritage, and works from African-American authors. Teaching history to young students is critical in education, and representation of Black history and contributions is absolutely essential to actively reflecting our own and other’s experiences and perspectives.

To learn more and make a donation to CARE Elementary, click here.

TACA 

Founded by Zumba® Jammer Rita Cohen of Virginia, USA, TACA (Tidewater African Cultural Alliance)  works to bring Africans & others together through community outreach, community service, educational programs, and cultural arts & events. Zumba is proud to donate $5,000 to help support the work of one of our community members focused on the advancement of Black lives and making a positive change.

To learn more and make a donation to TACA, click here.

Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation

The New York City-based Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation works to continue the vision of pioneer Alvin Ailey to build a cultural community providing dance performances rooted in African-American tradition, training + education, and community programs to unite people of all races, ages and backgrounds. Our shared values of movement and education through the universal language of dance makes AADF a natural fit for us to support, especially in this critical COVID-19 moment, where so many arts organizations have been affected. Even in this time of uncertainty and loss, dancers continue to create innovative new ways to reach their students and inspire them through dance. The Ailey Extension branch of the organization has been offering online dance and fitness classes since March, making it possible for even more students to experience the joys of dance. Zumba is donating $20,000 to AADF’s operational services directly impacting their instructors, dancers, educators, and programs.

To learn more and make a donation to the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation, click here.

So, how can you join with us and make a difference? Taking the time to learn more, get involved, or make a direct donation to any of the above organizations or any organizations in your area is a truly great way to share your support! Making sure you are educated and engaged about conversations surrounding Black lives and Black communities, as well as celebrating Black history, excellence, and accomplishments, is another integral way to enact change. 

Here are some thoughtful educational resources to get you started. The information contained in these resources was not created by us and is being provided for general informational purposes only. We are not responsible for the content contained in these resources and make no representation regarding the accuracy, adequacy, reliability, availability or completeness of any information:

Articles to read – 

Media to watch – 

Podcasts to listen to – 

Books to read – 

Foundations – 

Accounts to follow – 

Things to do this Black History Month… and keep doing the other 11 months of the year!

  • Continue to educate yourself and the people around you.
  • Confront racism wherever you see it, online and with family/friends.
  • Support small black owned businesses and creators.
  • Donate time/resources to Black organizations. 
  • Make actionable goals to support Black liberation (ones that Black communities ask for!)
  • Study the African Diaspora. 
  • Engage in healthy conversations about Black History on social media. 
  • Explore Black culture. 
  • Spend time with a Black elder in your community.
  • Read a book by a Black author.
  • Donate to an HBCU.
  • Read a biography of an influential Black figure.

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