The South African Project

The South African Project, a benefit performance featuring youth performers from the Bokamoso Youth Center of Winterveldt, South Africa.

The rural township of Winterveldt, South Africa is plagued with serious challenges, including a 50% unemployment rate and an HIV/AIDS infection rate that affects 25% of the population; teen pregnancy and family violence; and other social ills that accompany poverty. Yet despite these problems, the community is actively working to heal and restore its population. For the past ten years, the Bokamoso Life Center has worked with at-risk youth in Winterveldt, helping to mentor them, and teach them skills that move them forward in their lives.

Since 2003, Professor Leslie Jacobson and colleague Roy Barber, accompanied by GW students on undergraduate fellowships, have worked with the youth from Bokamoso in Winterveldt, S.A. Each summer, they have developed plays and songs that address social problems in their community. Since the winter of 2004, youth from the Bokamoso Youth Center have traveled to the U.S., staying part of the time with GW students and engaging in cultural exchange. Their residency culminates in a performance at the Dorothy Betts Marvin Theatre of The George Washington University, to benefit the Bokamoso Youth Center. This year’s performance includes a new play by Roy Barber and Leslie Jacobson. The performance, drawn from the lives of the youth, also features traditional African song and dance, and a guest appearance by GW’s Troubadours.

SPONSORS: GW Department of Theatre and Dance, with the support of the Departments of Music, Africana Studies, and Women’s Studies; and community partners St. Andrew’s Episcopal School and The Seekers Church

Friday, February 6, 2009 at 7:30 p.m. Dorothy Betts Marvin Theatre

TICKETS: Ticket reservations are available by emailing
by calling (202)994-6178 or by visiting the box office on the night of the performance, located next to the Dorothy Betts Marvin Theatre, on the first floor of the Marvin Center. Admission is $10 for students and seniors, and $30 for the general public.

All proceeds go directly to the Bokamoso Youth Center of Winterveldt, South Africa.

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