Annual Events

Summer Performing Arts Camp – Camp Nia

This is a very low cost, two week, full day program open to girls ages 11-14 which includes lunch and snacks. With an Afrocentric foundation through performing arts, the camp addresses self-esteem, self-confidence, self-control, health & exercise, and proper diet.  With an Afrocentric foundation, the camp addresses self-esteem, self-confidence, self-control, self-expression, cultural awareness, health & exercise, and proper diet via the performing arts. Four classes are offered: vocals, dance, drama, and stage design. The girls select two classes to focus on for the duration of the camp, which they attend daily. Classes are taught by high school students, college students, and/or professionals experienced in the craft being taught. All of our instructors are well experienced in working with youth.

Camp Nia girls also have an opportunity to participate in open mic, arts & crafts projects, and cooperative games each day. The entire two weeks of Camp Nia are spent preparing for a culminating performance which is open to the community.

Annual Retreat

Before starting the weekly meetings for the new school year, the 7th and 8th grade Nia ladies attend an annual overnight retreat together. The retreat focuses on strengthening their self-esteem, sisterhood, respect for one another, and problem solving skills.  The retreat is held at Grizzly Creek Ranch, and the girls are exposed to a challenge course which includes a series of difficult tasks which must be completed together, and require group communication and cooperative working skills in order to accomplish. Only after completing one challenge successfully can they move to the next. The girls are also exposed to kayaking, archery, hiking, swimming, and other activities. After attending the retreat, the girls tend to have a stronger bond with one another, in addition to stronger self-esteem, having accomplished tasks together they never viewed as possible. They come back from the retreat stronger, and ready to start the new Nia year with a bang!

Youth Leadership Conference

Each year, Sisters of Nia hosts a leadership conference targeting youth ages 11-14 for boys and girls. Community leaders give their time to present workshops which provide youth with information and skills for building self-esteem, drug and alcohol abuse awareness and avoidance, peer pressure, self-control, sex education and health, and the law. The conference also includes a youth panel of high school and college students, as well as recent college graduates who share personal experiences of challenges and successes, as well as tips for being successful and dealing with challenges, and other insights benefiting the youth in attendance. The main goal of the conference is to educate and inspire youth to work to their fullest potential, live their lives with a purpose, and to take on leadership roles in their families, schools, and communities.

What did they walk away with?

95% enjoyed and learned something in ALL their workshops

95% felt the conference made a positive impact in their life

95% felt more prepared to be a leader after attending the conference

92% felt the conference was an overall valuable experience

95% would recommend the conference to friends

29% returning conference attendees

Quotes from Participants

All the workshops helped teach me how to carry myself and I learned the importance of being respectful.

This conference made a positive impact on my decision to lead by example. It has influenced me and shown me that people of color can be very prominent.

This conference helped me change my attitude and to stay on the positive side of life.

This conference made a positive impact because it helped me feel better about myself.

This conference taught me that attitude is the key to going to college.

I learned to be a leader and be who I am and not what others tell me to be.

Talent Show

Our Community Youth Talent Show is held in the spring. Each year, Sisters of Nia hosts a talent show where youth are encouraged to share their talents with the community. Acts include song, dance, spoken word, and comedy, among other talents. Talented youth in the Sacramento community are selected to perform as “showcases” to share their special gifts. In addition, Sisters of Nia girls are highlighted, sharing special performances while demonstrating their increased self-esteem and confidence. The evening also includes great food and raffle prizes.

Guest judges from the Sacramento area are selected and team together to choose three talent show winners. Past judges include Courtney Dempsey and Ken Rudolph from Good Day Sacramento CW31, and Lady Charmaine from Praise 98FM Lady Charmaine Live, an internet Gospel radio show. Year after year, the competition gets better and better, but more difficult to judge.

Our annual talent show has become a highlight in the community, and is looked forward to by Sacramento youth and their families. Our talent show gives Sacramento youth between the ages of 11-14 an opportunity to share their talents in a safe, caring environment and is an evening full of wonderful entertainment, fun, and fellowship.

HBCU/Black History Tour

As part of their culminating rites of passage, the 8th grade Nia girls will attend a Historical Black Colleges & Universities (HBCU)/Black History Tour in Atlanta, Georgia. The girls will visit Spelman, Clark-Atlanta, and Morehouse Colleges. Spelman shares similar core values with Sisters of Nia: academic success, sisterhood, ethical/moral leadership, respect, balance, social justice, and diversity. The Atlanta trip will also include a of tour Martin Luther King, Jr.’s childhood home, Ebenezer Baptist Church, and the King Center, to reinforce the girls’ sense of social responsibility for social change. The purpose of this tour is to bring the African history lessons from the weekly sessions full circle, and to reinforce each of the Sisters of Nia principles. During the trip, the girls are able to make visual connections to many of the weekly lessons related to African/Black History. They will also be exposed to several professional Black women who will share with them about their personal experiences of success and challenges. Upon returning home, each girl will prepare a presentation to be given to the 6th and 7th grade Nia ladies which will share highlights about the trip.

Rites of Passage Ceremony

The completion of the three year Sisters of Nia program culminates with a rites of passage ceremony, symbolizing their crossing over into new levels of maturity, as purposeful, confident, and motivated young women. We celebrated our 1st Annual Rites of Passage Celebration in June of 2012. Prior to participating in the ceremony, each girl must complete a series of eight tasks, each representing one of the Nia principles. Tasks include research, presentations, and interviews enabling the girls to learn about and connect with a variety of African Americans in their families, communities, and career interests. Upon completion of the program, each girl will be armored with a set of tools to be well prepared for her future.

Included as part of their culminating rites of passage, the 8th grade Nia girls will also attend a Historical Black Colleges & Universities (HBCU)/Black History Tour in Atlanta, Georgia. The girls will visit Spelman, Clark-Atlanta, and Morehouse Colleges. Spelman shares similar core values with Sisters of Nia: academic success, sisterhood, ethical/moral leadership, respect, balance, social justice, and diversity. The Atlanta trip will also include a of tour the APEX Museum (focuses on African history & the slave trade), Martin Luther King, Jr.’s childhood home, Ebenezer Baptist Church, and the King Center, at an effort to reinforce the girls’ sense of social responsibility for social change.

The purpose of this tour is to bring the African history lessons from the weekly sessions full circle, and to reinforce each of the Sisters of Nia principles. During the trip, the girls are able to make visual connections to many of the weekly lessons related to African/Black History. They will also be exposed to several professional Black women who will share with them about their personal experiences of success and challenges. Upon returning home, each girl will prepare a presentation to be given to the 6th and 7th grade Nia ladies which will share highlights about the trip.

Participation in the rites of passage ceremony is the ultimate goal of each Nia girl. It is a day to honor the many accomplishments and bright future of each of our Nia ladies…it is the day they begin to live their life with purpose.