The 2007 Barr Fellows class smiles for a group photo.

Shaumba-Yandje Dibinga

Founding Artistic & Executive Director, OrigiNation

OrigiNation is a performing arts organization based in Roxbury that has been serving youth since 1994. Founding Executive and Artistic Director Shaumba-Yandje Dibinga has extensive training, teaching, and performance experience in all areas of dance and theater and has been writing poetry and producing plays for twenty years. She founded OrigiNation, “The Nation that Caters to Youth,” to provide a safe haven for young people to learn the importance of self-respect, health, public speaking, education, self-confidence, job training, and the extent of African influences on various contemporary art forms.

OrigiNation, home to four professional youth dance companies, implements initiatives to raise students’ awareness about pertinent social issues and to facilitate their development into well-rounded citizens. It serves 400 youth in house and close to 5,000 through artist-in-residence programs. Shaumba-Yandje has won many awards, including the Boston Fellows Award and Boston NAACP Image Award, and is the author of the book Pride in My Stride.