All Articles Tagged "sierra leone"
Michaela Deprince does not look like the “typical” 17 year old ballet dancer. At 5’4″, she is shorter and more muscular than most ballet dancers. She is also from Sierra Leone and all three of these are noted “problems” (with the admitted race and body type issues in ballet) for someone who just wants to dance. But that isn’t stopping her at all.
In the latest issue of Teen Vogue, Michaela tells the story of how she was adopted from her home country after her parents were savagely killed in a war and she was placed in an “if you make it out, you’re lucky” foster home. Her parents came to adopt one little girl (her sister – not by blood – Mia) and couldn’t bear the thought that Michaela would “never find a home” so they adopted her too. Her ballet dreams stem from seeing a woman on the cover of a magazine in a ballerina costume and decided to always keep that picture with her. After moving to the United States with her adopted parents, Michaela showed them the picture and they decided to enroll her in a school in Philadelphia. Although the family eventually moved, 13 year old Michaela stayed in Philadelphia to dance at the school full-time and went to an online high school.
That is definitely a dramatic route for such a young lady but her parents support her and this dream. She has decided not to go to college right now, opting to see how far her talents can take her. Right now, Michaela is a member of the American Ballet Theater’s esteemed Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in New York City. There’s not much time for big fun because as Michaela says, all she has time for is class and practice.
Michaela Deprince is an amazing talent and can serve a s great role model for girls who want to dance but might be afraid because they don’t fit the “normal” look and type of a dance.
Check out the story here in its entirety as well as the beautiful pictures.
This young chocolate hottie is one of West Africa’s finest. Originally from Sierra Leone, Salieu Jalloh was discovered on the streets of New York in 2008. Since then, the young model has sky rocketed to the stars, booking several jobs under Red Model Management.
(New York Times) — The paramedic’s eyes were bloodshot, his features drawn. Pregnant women jammed into the darkened concrete bunker, just as they had yesterday and would tomorrow. The increase in patients had been fivefold, or tenfold. The exhausted paramedic had lost count in a blur of uninterrupted examinations and deliveries. The word was out: it was no longer necessary to give birth at home and risk losing a baby or dying in childbirth. Hadiatou Kamara, 18, waited in the crowd. She had already lost a baby boy and girl. “They both died,” she said quietly. Now, for her third pregnancy, she was at this rural health clinic outside Freetown, the capital. The Sierra Leone government has eliminated fees for pregnant women and children, and Ms. Kamara, like thousands of women in a country where surgery has been performed by the light of cellphones and flashlights, could afford trained medical staff to oversee her pregnancy for the first time. At the Waterloo Community Health Center here, the women were spilling out the door, as they have consistently since the fees were lifted last year.
Diamonds are truly not a girl’s best friend, as supermodel Naomi Campbell testified in the war crimes case of former president of Liberia, Charles Taylor at The Hague on Thursday.
Supermodel/ diva extraordinaire Naomi Campbell is in some hot water for allegedly accepting blood diamonds from the corrupt and former leader of Liberia, Chuck Taylor. Campbell has been called to testify at a war crimes trial later this month and her testimony could potentially invalidate Taylor’s claim that he never owned or traded diamonds, which many believe he used to “finance a rebellion in Sierre Leone in the 1990s.”
While Campbell has certainly shown a clear reluctance to get involved and even has denied receiving diamonds from Taylor, her actions, albeit passive, are not surprising or that disappointing. Most people in her situation would’ve accepted the gift. She has never claimed to be a role model or leader and is very comfortable with her role as a fashion model and celebrity and nothing more.
Russell Simmons, however, does fashion himself a leader. And he is a leader, who in 2006, came out in criticism of the film “Blood Diamonds.” Although nothing’s confirmed, it was suspected that DeBeers recruited Simmons to speak out on their behalf. While so many people have continuously worked to expose the dysfunctional and damaging relationship between the diamond trade and unrest and dysfunction in many African countries, here was Simmons telling everyone that diamonds do more good than harm, based on a “fact-finding” mission he went on, sponsored most likely by DeBeers.
Whether he really believed what he was saying or not, Simmons should take stock of his level of power and influence amongst Black America especially when endorsing such a delicate matter. Campbell may be getting all the attention these days for her involvement with Mr. Taylor but Simmons’ earlier actions and publicity tour for the diamond industry has had a much more far-reaching and direct affect on the public’s perceptions.