Afropolitan Youth Association (AYA) is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our Mission is uniting and empowering African youths for a positive future. The group consists of young Africans students and professionals in the United States. The primary purpose of AYA is to empower young Africans residing in the surrounding Maryland-District of Columbia-Virginia communities to be nurtured into responsible, well-adjusted and productive leaders. This will be achieved by promoting integrity, cooperation, and excellence.
The Afropolitan Youth Association, are the hosts of FestAfrica – Largest African Festival in Maryland, USA. Our objective is to Network, Unite & Empower Youth with African Heritage towards a Positive Future through Community Service. And we provide support to Charity Organizations with in interest in Africa.
- Create a network of young Africans.
- Promote African cultural awareness in America.
- Conduct education and social programs to promote unity and development among Africans.
- Provide and atmosphere for healthy, unbiased exchange of ideas.
- Provide opportunities to serve our community.
It all began with a concerned Nigerian parent in the summer of 2000. He believed young Nigerians had to form a network in order to achieve personal success and contribute to the success of their homeland Nigeria. He passed his vision on to his children and other young Nigerian youth, therefore giving life to the organization.
Transition from the Nigerian Youth Association to the Afropolitan Youth Association:
NYA is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit with the mission to unite and empower Nigerian-American youths for a positive future. Members range from ages 16 – 30 yrs old, high school students to young professionals in the MD/DC metropolitan areas & VA. In 2013 Nigerian Youth Association (NYA) became Afropolitan Youth Association (AYA). Although Nigerian Youth Association was all open to people from other African countries, changing our name solidified our commitment be inclusive and in solidarity with our fellow Africans. This change reflects the current posture of the festival committee and its partners.
Inception of FestAfrica:
In 2003, during one of their monthly Sunday meetings, members of the Nigerian Youth Association decided they wanted to have an event that would display their African culture and be a source of pride. They decided to put together a Nigerian Festival called “Naija Fest”. The festival started out in a small park in Baltimore County, MD. In 2006, they out grew the park and moved to a new location at Patterson Park, Baltimore City. The festival became Baltimore’s Official African festival and was included in the Mayor’s Showcase of Nations Celebration. In 2008, we changed the festival name from Naija Fest to FestAfrica to reflect the diverse members of the planning committee and to become an all-African nations’ festival. In 2011, FestAfrica moved to Veterans Plaza in Silver Spring, MD. The relocation to Silver Spring propelled our festival growth because of the location in the heart of Silver Spring, a large population of Africans who reside in Montgomery County, and overall cultural diversity in the community.
Purpose of FestAfrica:
The primary purpose of FestAfrica is to celebrate African culture and heritage in Maryland though authentic music, dance, arts and crafts, food, and fashion.
Goals of FestAfrica:
- Bring Africans together to celebrate our culture and heritage
- Educate the community non-Africans about Africa’s traditional and contemporary art forms
- Highlight African youth initiatives within our community
- Provide African and local vendors and opportunity to display their talents and goods
- Promote diversity and interactions within the community
Do you want to join us? Email us: afropolitanyouth @ gmail.com
Would you like to donate to our association and fund our Free African Festival “FestAfrica”? You can do so via paypal HERE or join our “Keep FestAfrica Alive” Campaign http://www.gofundme.
We appreciate your donation!