Dance for Conservation

Traditional dance is an integral part of community life and culture in the Sukuma tribe, a Bantu ethnic group native to the Africa Great Lakes region, and many of whom reside in Tanzania. Dance is common after harvesting crops from farms, and for other celebrations and events. Further, some of the women’s dance groups have expressed interest in sharing their dance as part of a cultural exchange and engagement in cultural tourism.

The groups perform dances that reflect human life and interactions with local wildlife species, and that share messaging around environment issues (e.g., garbage clean up and proper disposal, clean water and warn against wildlife poaching). In the past, dance groups have participated in a competition where song is included, and whose lyrics are meant to discourage listeners from colluding with poachers and wildlife destruction. Winners competition, where song is included whose lyrics are meant to dare selected by a panel of judges, and are awarded safari tour trips to the Serengeti National Park or the Kijereshi Game Reserve to continue their wildlife conservation education.