If you've been around this blog enough to see my personal work, you know that being in tune with your heritage and culture is a big part of my life. It is an intangible heirloom of sorts, a legacy, that I learned from my grandparents, Humberto + Sara Flores, parents, and my tías and tíos. While it has morphed into our family's own sort of awesome Mexican American micro-culture centered around Corpus Christi, Texas, I'm always up to experiencing it wherever I can find it.
Early this year, my mom started a traditional Mexican dance group with at-risk Hispanic youth in Goldsboro, Ballet Folklorico De Colores. These awesome kids, aged from preschool to high school, get the opportunity to embrace their heritage like my mom and I did. She passes along the lessons from her parents about being proud of who you are + where you came from, about having confidence about your abilities, and being able to tell the story of your people to others through dance. In Goldsboro, the Hispanic population has boomed, so it's great to see what I know as "everyday life" in Corpus Christi, San Antonio, and other parts of South Texas and the Southwest, making its way to North Carolina. De Colores is installing the confidence in these kids and allowing them to realize that they are strong, Hispanic youth with bright futures.
How do you connect with your culture when you're not actively living it?