Apia residents raise funds and clean-up beach

It was a case of killing two birds with one stone: raising funds for one of Samoa’s top dancing acts and raising awareness on the nationwide plastic ban. 

To prepare the United Uso Dance Crew for their competition in New Zealand on April this year, two community-focused events were held on Saturday in partnership with the popular Coffee Bean Café. 

The public were invited to the Apia beachfront on Saturday to clean up the beach as well as support the dancing crew’s fundraising initiative. The crew sold $10 BBQ packs as well as joined the public to clean-up the beachfront, the campaign coinciding with the recent declaration of a ban on single-use plastics and straws in Samoa. 

A post that was tagged to the Facebook page of the Coffee Bean Café, said the crew’s fundraising initiative as well as beachfront clean-up was an overwhelming success. 

“A huge thank you to everyone who came down and helped in today’s beach clean up, it was a raging success. The united uso dance crew sold out and the beach has never looked cleaner. #peoplepower #banplastic #samoa #keepsamoabeautiful @ The Coffee Bean Cafe, Apia, Samoa,” posted Andrew Pedrana.

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The objective of the fundraising drive – which will be held on a weekly basis – is to enable the dance crew to fulfil their dreams of competing in the Hip Hop International South Pacific Dance Competition in New Zealand.

A member of the crew, Bennitto Rudolf, spoke on behalf of the United Uso in an interview with the Samoa Observer.

“Our goal is to compete in the real world of Hip Hop and to show our talent. It is also us promoting our country as a country of hip hop stars. Hopefully it can be a message to all the young dancers out there to come out and shine.”

“We are excited somehow to see our families, friends and all the people that came along to support us today and its great news to us. It is the first day of our program but a lot people had made the effort to be part of our event and we appreciate it,” he said. 

 Organiser and owner of the Coffee Bean Café, Andrew Pedrana believed that they will do well, and wishes them the best on their competition.

“I’m sure they will do really well as a team. Hopefully they will hit their target and will go to NZ.”

He also spoke on the important message that their fundraising program wishes to give out to all the public.

“I hope that with this ongoing fundraising program will continue educating the people on rubbish. That’s an important thing along with their dancing to have a message. We are not just here to raise money but also to raise awareness.”

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