A local refugee choir performed traditional African dances, songs and drumming before exhibiting varieties of traditional dress in a captivating fashion show on July 16.

Co-founders of the Immigrant and Refugee Resource Village of Albuquerque, as well as New Mexico Women's Global Pathways, Lungile Sinandile and his wife Nkazi Sinandile organized the The Matunda Ya Yesu African Refugee Youth Choir performance and fashion show.

The event was held to benefit displaced youth from South African refugee camps. Each choir member spent weeks preparing for the event, sewing their own garments and handcrafting their own jewelry. Items were placed on sale, and proceeds aimed to benefit the youth choir members and their families, assisting them with living and back-to-school costs.


Mahatma Gandhi once said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”

Yes, I know, it’s completely cheesy to open up a column about volunteerism with a quote from Ghandi, but it’s true. Community service can help us find empathy, education and community. We come to understand that despite our various hardships and societal factions, we’re all just people: equally powerful, equally powerless.

Still, we often forget that fulfilling volunteer work does not always have to be far from home.

Two cooking lessons, one soccer game and a hundred hugs later, I’ve returned back to the States with improved Spanish jargon and a new perspective on travel.

I spent three weeks in Costa Rica, entirely out of my element, but also incredibly in it.

I joined a UNM professor, a few professional Costa Rican (Tico) athletes and around 20 collegiate student-athletes from across the U.S. for a summer internship like no other.

I have the superpower to trip on thin air, frequently burn dinner and experience chronic nose bleeds—if you know me, you know that I’m not a student-athlete.

In celebration of World Refugee Day, an international event voicing support for displaced persons in every community globally, one Albuquerque group hosted a crafts fair where refugee women sold handmade goods.

Women’s Global Pathways is a branch of the Immigrant Refugee Resource Village of Albuquerque, whose mission is “empowering the most marginalized populations of New Mexico including refugee, other immigrant local low income women, girls and their families.”

Their work aims to help this population with some of the common issues they face, including acquiring transportation, breaking language barriers and securing jobs.


Food: Olo hopes to display local pride

Summer’s just begun, and family-owned Olo Yogurt Studio on Nob Hill is keeping it cool with their frozen yogurt creations. Shop owner Paula Pope said she was inspired to make a froyo business while in California.

“While getting my master’s degree in public health from (California) State, Long Beach, the self-serve froyo concept was booming,” she said. “I loved that it was a healthy treat, and the ability to create your own treat allowed for portion control. Plus it was super affordable, especially for a cash-strapped college student.”

When it was time for the UNM alumn to think of a place to put her yogurt business, Pope said she thought about Albuquerque.

Artist Profile: Stranger Factory gives alternative art a platform

Stranger Factory is a gallery devoted to bringing a new style of art to Nob Hill with exhibits featuring artists from around the world, including work from local artist Karl Deuble, a native New Mexican and UNM alum.

Deuble’s art specializes in cartoons and character based artwork while also falling under pop surrealism and lowbrow. He started following the work of artists at Stranger Factory in college after being inspired by the gallery owner's creations for years.

After graduation, he worked as a screen printer for six years and attended Stranger Factory show openings. That was when Stranger Factory contacted him for his screen printing, saw his art and invited him to participate in a Halloween show, he said.

Column: College Anxiety: Understanding its triggers

Anxiety can be unpredictable and creeps into the mind beginning as a feeling of worry being presented in situations that an individual feels they have no control of. As the unease in these situations increases, anxiety can begin affecting everyday life preventing a person's ability to complete tasks they once found simple.

For many college students, anxiety is simply another part of the college experience you purchase – along with your textbooks.

Column: Ellen DeGeneres — A hero during Pride Month and every month

Twenty years ago, Ellen DeGeneres revealed both her character’s and her own homosexuality on her primetime TV sitcom, “Ellen.”

Despite winning an Emmy Award and receiving support from LGBT activists, her announcement was followed by a flood of criticism — advertisers no longer wanted to sponsor the show, she received hate mail, a bomb scare and even death threats.

Albuquerque Pridefest celebrates 41st annual LGBTQ parade

Albuquerque joined a national celebration of LGBTQ pride during Saturday’s 41st annual Albuquerque Pridefest.

Pridefest kicks off every year with a parade where different groups and organizations create displays and floats that represent and unite the LGBTQ community.

Notably, several senatorial candidates and corporate representatives were also in attendance.

Bad Suns: Live at Meow Wolf

The alternative indie rock band Bad Suns is four shows deep into their Outskirts of Paradise Tour and their energy is without a doubt strong.

Comprised of lead vocalist and rhythm guitar player Christo Bowman, lead guitar Ray Libby, bass player Gavin Bennett, and Miles Morris on drums. The band is fresh off their newest LP release “Disappear Here” (2016).

Satisfying the craving they left with their fans after the release, Bad Suns delivered a quality show that was full of energy, color and a refreshing look at the indie rock genre.

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