Letters from the dorm: Learn to dance with diversity

Letters from the dorm: Learn to dance with diversity

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Dance Around the World guests learned to hula dance and more.
Dance Around the World guests learned to hula dance and more.
In a multicultural city like Hong Kong, you're continually exposed to a fusion of different cultures and perspectives. Everywhere you look, there's a hint of mystery: a custom you're not familiar with, a foreign language being spoken, a hidden heritage central to someone's identity that you do not yet know.

Growing up in Hong Kong exposed me to the beauty of diversity.

When I moved to Canada last summer, I had a burning desire to share my love of cultures and to promote multicultural understanding. I also recognised the role outdoor exercise played in cultivating a healthy lifestyle.

This inspired me to create and organise a series of public cultural dance workshops which I called Dance Around the World

It was a daunting task. I had to approach, call and e-mail more than 100 companies, requesting sponsorship, workshop leaders who could work for free, refreshments and more.

One of the greatest lessons I learned was that I couldn't let failures and setbacks stop me. Although I faced rejection after rejection, support from my family and friends encouraged me to keep trying.

Eventually, the mayor of Markham (a city near Toronto) agreed to hold the event at the regional Civic Centre, with refreshments sponsored by the district councillor of Richmond Hill, free workshops led by local dance schools and funding from the Ontario government!

On September 8, after a month of intense planning, I was overjoyed to see more than 70 participants across the region attend my event.

People of all ages enjoyed a day in the sun and learned dances from salsa and Hawaiian dance, to Indian classical, Bollywood and belly dancing.

Even though I've only been in Canada for little more than a year, it already feels like home. Dance Around the World has helped me embrace culture and taught me the importance of trying. If you never aim for the stars, then you'll never get there.

 

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